Media Releases

Regional centre of Armidale to welcome refugees

Community support will play a critical role in the successful settlement of an estimated 200 refugees in NSW regional hub Armidale, according to leading humanitarian settlement not-for-profit Settlement Services International (SSI).

Minister for Social Services, Christian Porter, announced on Friday that SSI had been contracted to provide on-the-ground settlement services to an estimated 200 refugees who will settle in Armidale in 2018 as part of the Humanitarian Settlement Program (HSP). SSI was recently successful in obtaining the contract for two of the 11 HSP contract regions: Sydney and NSW regional, which includes Newcastle, Coffs Harbour and the newly defined Armidale refugee settlement area.

Read more: Regional centre of Armidale to welcome refugees

SSI secures new refugee settlement contract

Settlement Services International (SSI) will provide settlement services to refugees and humanitarian entrants under the new Humanitarian Settlement Program (HSP), continuing its long-term work in this area.

In Canberra today, the Australian Government announced SSI was successful in two of the 11 newly defined contract regions across Australia: Sydney and NSW Regional, which covers northern NSW.

Read more: SSI secures new refugee settlement contract

Festival gives refugee artists a new beginning

The New Beginnings Festival for Refugee Week brings together new and established communities for a program of visual arts, film, installations and workshops.

The festival will include the Singular/Plural art exhibition, featuring established contemporary artists Lindy Lee, Aroha Groves, Alex Seton and Garry Trinh exhibiting alongside newly arrived artists from refugee backgrounds, including Sameer Dakhil — an expert engraver from Iraq.

Read more: Festival gives refugee artists a new beginning

Freedom of expression vs cultural appropriation

Journalists, comedians and writers will explore the blurry lines between freedom of expression and cultural appropriation at an event that will tip the traditional debate format on its head.

Cultural appropriation controversies continue to dominate headlines, targeting everything from festival wear to the hairstyles of the Kardashians, but critics argue these continual outcries are stifling the creative expression. Should artists be restricted by cultural boundaries when creating their work?

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Refugee entrepreneurship making million-dollar economic contribution

A report to be released on Thursday March 23 finds evidence that, with the right support, refugee entrepreneurs provide significant economic benefits to Australia.

The report, From Refugee to Entrepreneur in Three Years, looks at the existing and potential contribution of refugee entrepreneurs to the Australian economy and society. It was prepared by Professor Jock Collins of UTS Business School and will be launched by the Assistant Minister for Industry, Innovation and Science, the Hon Craig Laundy MP, in Canberra.

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SSI's response to Multicultural Australia – United, Strong, Successful

With today’s release of the Multicultural Australia – United, Strong, Successful, Settlement Services International welcomes the Federal Government’s strong and unequivocal endorsement of a multicultural Australia and the highly successful humanitarian settlement and migration programs that have been the centre of that success for more than 70 years.

Read more: SSI's response to Multicultural Australia – United, Strong, Successful

Inclusive celebration captures International Women’s Day spirit

An International Women’s Day event has embodied the inclusive spirit of the day with a celebration involving women, men and children of all ages and backgrounds.

Not-for-profit humanitarian organisation Settlement Services International (SSI) hosted the event for Auburn locals, community groups and individuals and families who are new to Australia.

Read more: Inclusive celebration captures International Women’s Day spirit

Syrian arrivals in Fairfield: sorting fact from fiction

A number of media reports since the start of 2017 have claimed communities in western Sydney are concerned about the arrival of the extra cohort of 12,000 Syrian and Iraqi refugees, using figures that are not supported by facts. 

As one of the largest settlement services providers, we know that the main reasons our humanitarian clients choose to settle in an area are: affordability, availability of suitable housing, access to services such as schools, IEC, SSI, and proximity to family.

Read more: Syrian arrivals in Fairfield: sorting fact from fiction

SSI partnership Thrive Refugee Enterprise fast-tracks refugee business plans

A new SSI partnership operating nation-wide will help entrepreneurs from refugee backgrounds fast-track their business plans and achieve their goal of establishing a successful business in Australia.

SSI has partnered with Thrive Refugee Enterprise, which aims to support the entrepreneurial spirit of refugees by providing microfinancing and mentoring support to aspiring business owners from refugee backgrounds.

Read more: SSI partnership Thrive Refugee Enterprise fast-tracks refugee business plans

Success stories

Ania Kebabjian story featured in Marie Claire Fashion Magazine: "I made Australia home"

Ania Kebabjian fled Syria via Lebanon and arrived to Australia in 2016 as a refugeeAnia Kebabjian fled Syria via Lebanon and arrived to Australia in 2016 as a refugee. She admits that starting up a new life and settling in takes time - but 2017 was different, Ania explains to Marie Claire magazine, as she finally feels at home.

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