SSI News Blog

The 6th annual STARTTS Refugee Ball was held on October 23, at Cockle Bay Wharf, and was enthusiastically supported by SSI staff.

The ball raises much needed funds for the NSW Service for the Treatment and Rehabilitation of Torture and Trauma Survivors (STARTTS).

SSI has been a major sponsor of the Ball for the past three years, and this year 20 staff attended. Attendees included members of the Board, senior management and staff from the various SSI program areas.

SSI Team Leader Magdaline Shenton-Kaleido attended and said it was an incredibly worthwhile event that people in the sector wholeheartedly supported. Attendees were particularly impressed with speeches by Australian Human Rights Commission President Gillian Triggs and STARTTS CEO Jorge Arouche, Ms Shenton-Kaleido said.

“The night was loads of fun, and provided a relaxed environment to raise money for and to celebrate the unique service that STARTTS provides people suffering from torture and trauma,” she said. “It was also an opportunity to network with others working creatively and passionately to support refugees and asylum seekers in our community to heal and follow their dreams.”  

STARTTS has facilitated programs that treat victims of torture and trauma in a holistic way for more than a quarter of a century. More than 5,000 clients are treated by STARTTS each year in services that range from counselling, to group therapy and other innovative programs that heal trauma and rebuild lives.  

Success stories

Bright future ahead for new Australian Dana Al Samaan

Dana is a young woman from Syria who came to Australia</p><pOriginally from Syria, Dana came to Australia via Iraq in search of safety.

I was born and raised in Damascus, Syria. Syria is the country where I attended school and university for free, where I enjoyed safety and security, where I learned to communicate and respect others even when we have differences in religion, thought, doctrine or ideology,” she said.

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