Bright colours, traditional music and food, and sharing of cultures was how Warrnambool celebrated the traditional Indian festival Diwali at the weekend.
For Raj Samrai and his family, The Festival of Lights is how they connect back to their Indian heritage every year.
"When we first moved to Australia we wanted to maintain a link to our culture, especially for our two children who were six and seven at the time," Mr Samrai said.
"We were very conscious of living in a western culture and we wanted to be mindful of our connection to our heritage and religion.
"Warrnambool already had an Indian community and we all wanted to maintain the linkage.
"We decided we would celebrate Diwali every year."
Mr Samrai, his wife Rashmita, son Ashwynn and daughter Marissa emigrated from the United Kingdom 12 years ago and settled in Warrnambool where Mr Samrai worked as a pharmacist's assistant at Monaghan's Pharmacy before beginning health and wellness coaching and mentoring business 'A Healthy You' which specialises in chronic illnesses.
Mrs Samrai volunteered throughout the community before finding work at Brophy Family Youth Services and now the Department of Education.
"We fully immersed ourselves in the Warrnambool community and made a large friendship circle," Mr Samrai said.
"Diwali is one of the biggest festivals in the Hindu calendar and is all about sharing food, music and our culture.
"It was the perfect platform to share our culture with our friends and the community."
Diwali originated from the Hindu mythology of Lord Rama and his wife Sita. After 14 years of exile the couple were welcomed back to their Kingdom Ayodhya and the people guided their way with lamps.
"Diwali talks about all that is good in the world," Mr Samrai said.
"It's about good triumphing over evil with an enlightening outcome."
Marking the Hindu New Year and celebrated over a five-day period, Diwali was held as part of the new partnership between Brophy and Warrnambool City Council's 'Welcome To Warrnambool'.
Based on the lunar calendar, Diwali was celebrated on October 27 with an evening of sharing food, music, reading out the meaning of the festival and the traditional Indian folk 'Garba' dance.
In the lead up to the event, local artist Megan Nicolson created colourful Rangoli's at the foreshore and outside Rough Diamond and the Brophy complex.
Rangoli is a decoration that is thought to bring good luck and is traditionally placed on the floor or ground in doorways.
"Rangoli's are traditionally made with colour sand and flowers but because of the wind I created them with bright pastels," Ms Nicholson said.
"People were delighted to see the colours and I had a lot of excited children running up to see them on the paths.
"It was a great chance to talk to people about multicultural festival and find out about other cultures and the diverse cultures living within our community.
"It was really rewarding to do something different and engage with and educate the community."
Brophy Family and Youth Services held the Diwali celebration at their complex on Saturday with about 100 people joining the festivities. The Welcome To Warrnambool program has various multicultural celebrations marked in their calendar.
Have you signed up to The Standard's daily newsletter and breaking news emails? You can register below and make sure you are up to date with everything that's happening in the south-west.