JRS awarded community grant to help build resilient, vibrant and healthy communities in the Parramatta LGA

Maeve Brown and Matthew Potts receiving the Parramatta City Council Community Grant from City of Parramatta Administrator Amanda Chadwick. Photo: Jason Nicol Photography

Maeve Brown & Matthew Potts receiving the Parramatta City Council Community Grant from City of Parramatta Administrator Amanda Chadwick. Photo: Jason Nicol Photography

“Support for asylum seekers at the early stages of migration is essential if they are to become self-sufficient and successfully integrate into the Australian community,”

The City of Parramatta has awarded Jesuit Refugee Service Australia with a community grant at a ceremony on Wednesday 29 June, 2016.

The grant will be used by JRS to provide employment training and English language classes to people seeking asylum who are living in the Parramatta Local Government Area (LGA) in order that they may become self-sufficient, connected, and productive members of the local community.

“Support for asylum seekers at the early stages of migration is essential if they are to become self-sufficient and successfully integrate into the Australian community,” says Maeve Brown, Manager of the Arrupe Project.

Typically, people seeking asylum in Australia receive minimal and restricted support from Commonwealth funded services.

“Asylum seekers face a host of challenges including access to affordable and safe housing, learning English, securing employment, dealing with past trauma, and connecting with the broader community. These pressures often lead to asylum seekers becoming depressed and socially isolated, and thus the process of settlement upon being granted asylum is delayed,” says Maeve Brown.

The project will equip asylum seekers with the necessary language skills and job-seeking knowledge to secure employment so they can become self-sufficient. It will also help increase their sense of belonging, supporting them to become actively engaged members of the Parramatta local community as quickly as possible.

Parramatta Council supports a wide range of services and activities that contribute to social development and help local communities.

“Investing money in programs that assist the community encourages and supports the creation of new and innovative projects that will make a positive difference to people’s lives,” City of Parramatta Administrator Amanda Chadwick said at the Award Ceremony.

The project will also train and equip local volunteers – many of them retired – with the teaching skills needed to run employment training workshops and English language classes on an on-going basis, providing the opportunity for established Australians to welcome new arrivals, and support them to fulfil their potential and successfully settled in the Parramatta LGA.

Information to editors

The Jesuit Refugee Service is an international Catholic organisation with a mission to accompany, serve and advocate on behalf of forcibly displaced persons. With its headquarters based in Rome and with teams working in nearly 47 countries around the world, JRS provides education, health, social and other services to approximately 850,000 refugees and internally displaced persons, more than half of whom are women. JRS services are provided to refugees regardless of race, ethnic origin or religious beliefs.

For further information

Oliver White
Jesuit Refugee Service Australia
Tel: +61 2 9356 3888
Email: oliver.white@jrs.org.au
Twitter: @JRS_Aus

 

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