SSI recently took a group of ‘Women at Risk’, and their children, for a day trip to the Blue Mountains.
The SSI W@R (Woman at Risk) Committee arranged the excursion for about 30 clients who are deemed “at risk”. The group was a mix of refugee women and women seeking asylum.
The excursion was organised so these clients could meet other women in similar circumstances and engage with their case managers in a relaxed, social environment.
A bus collected the group from Granville and Blacktown train stations and delivered them to Katoomba.
First stop was the Echo Point lookout to view panoramic views of the southern Blue Mountains and the iconic Three Sisters rock formation.
The group then visited the Blue Mountains Cultural Centre, where they enjoyed a culturally diverse picnic lunch and the centre’s World Heritage Exhibition, to learn about the region’s native flora and fauna, and enjoy an art show related to Aboriginal culture.
“The women and children shared the joy of the spectacular views and fresh mountain air,” SSI Team Leader Catherine Wood said.
“Using their budding English skills, they engaged informally with the staff and they were particularly interested in the flora and fauna exhibition at the Cultural Centre. It was a really positive educational and social excursion for the women, children and case managers.”
The Refugee Woman at Risk visa is given to women who have applied from outside Australia, are living outside of their home country, do not have the protection of a male relative and are in danger of victimisation, harassment or serious abuse.
SSI’s Women at Risk Committee supports women, and their children, who have come to Australia on these permanent visas as well as women who have come to seek asylum or on other visa categories.
Read the final report from SSI’s Women at Risk forum held in June, 2014.