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“migrants”

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“migrants”

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From the CEO: Premier support for refugees

Thank you Premier Mike Baird. Your comments at a recent Australia Day function in support of refugees and asylum seekers were positive reinforcement for all of us who work to help these people make the most of their lives in Australia. I had the pleasure of hearing Mr Baird say emphatically that NSW was in a position to support more refugees and asylum seekers and that the state would welcome them.

Vale Professor Graeme Hugo

News that the distinguished demographer Professor Graeme Hugo lost his battle with cancer this week has saddened many staff at Settlement Services International (SSI). SSI CEO Violet Roumeliotis said Professor Hugo was considered one of Australia’s most respected and valued researchers of population, international migration and discrimination of migrants.

SSI leader one of top 25 influencers in not-for-profit sector

Settlement Services International CEO Violet Roumeliotis has been named in Pro Bono Australia’s Impact 25 list of the most influential people working in the not-for-profit sector in 2014. Ms Roumeliotis was chosen in the top 25 from 200 people working in the sector, by more than 3,600 Pro Bono Australia readers who voted.

Free community-based legal help reaches new arrivals

A partnership between Legal Aid NSW and settlement services provider Settlement Services International (SSI) has been effective in providing free legal assistance to recent arrivals and migrants, especially in Sydney’s west, an independent review has found. Almost 2,200 services were provided to clients in the first year of the project and the partners today signed an undertaking to continue the successful collaboration.

From the CEO – sharing knowledge

SSI’s Chair Kamalle Dabboussy and I had the opportunity to present at the International Metropolis Conference in Milan in November, and we left with a membership invitation and the beginnings of a bid to host the conference in Sydney. The Milan conference theme, “Migration: energy for the planet, feeding cultures,” looked at a global migration context.

From refugees to entrepreneurs

Small business entrepreneurs of refugee background were celebrated on Monday November 17 at the launch event of Ignite Small Business Start-ups (Ignite) in Sydney. Attended by almost 100 people, the event featured catering, photography, and film by some of the entrepreneurs supported by the Ignite initiative.

From the CEO – Walk Together

I was incredibly heartened to see the thousands of people from diverse ethnic, cultural and religious backgrounds who walked together on October 25, to show their support for a multicultural Australia where all people are respected.

SSI Speaker Series: Perception is reality

Settlement Services International’s (SSI) third Speakers’ Series event for 2014 will explore the theme: Perception is reality: How do we form our perceptions of refugees and asylum seekers? The live panel discussion will approach the complex question from different angles following a presentation by Professor Andrew Markus, who heads the Scanlon Foundation’s Mapping Social Cohesion research program based at Monash University. The 2014 Mapping Social Cohesion report suggested that the majority of Australians support a humanitarian settlement program, which assesses refugees overseas but are negative towards asylum seekers arriving by boat. The predominant view is that asylum seekers are illegal economic migrants. Claims of persecution are often ignored as a push factor. These views have increased since 2011. 

Symposium highlights holistic support services best practice

Access to timely and collaborative support services during their first years in Australia is critical to migrant and refugee families, ensuring a smoother transition to a new life here. This was highlighted at today’s Cultural Shift symposium on supporting migrant and refugee families through settlement. “It’s during the first few years of settlement that families […]

Cultural Shift symposium for migrant and refugee families

Settling in Australia presents recently arrived migrant and refugee families with many new opportunities but the process of settlement and the associated adjustments to a new country can also be challenging. “The first few years after arrival are when many migrant and refugee families face some of their greatest challenges,” Settlement Services International (SSI) CEO, Violet Roumeliotis said. “As our population grows, it has become imperative that we work together to make the change as smooth as possible for migrants and refugees.” Ms Roumeliotis said SSI had, for the first time in NSW, brought together leaders and experts from diverse organisations to provide an insightful and engaging interactive program at a one day symposium to be held on June 5 in Parramatta, titled ‘Cultural Shift: symposium on supporting migrant and refugee families through settlement.’ Please read on for snapshots of just some of the presentations and workshops at the symposium. SSI can arrange pre-event interviews with presenters and can arrange for interviews if a journalist would like to attend on the day.   

The first Cultural Shift symposium for migrant and refugee families

Settling in Australia presents recently arrived migrant and refugee families with many new opportunities but the process of settlement and the associated adjustments to a new country can also be challenging. “The first few years after arrival are when many migrant and refugee families face some of their greatest challenges,” Settlement Services International (SSI) CEO, Violet Roumeliotis said. “As our population grows, it has become imperative that we work together to make the change as smooth as possible for migrants and refugees.” Ms Roumeliotis said SSI had, for the first time in NSW, brought together leaders and experts from diverse organisations to provide an insightful and engaging interactive program at a one day symposium to be held on June 5 in Parramatta, titled ‘Cultural Shift: symposium on supporting migrant and refugee families through settlement.’ Please read on for snapshots of just some of the presentations and workshops at the symposium. SSI can arrange pre-event interviews with presenters and can arrange for interviews if a journalist would like to attend on the day.

Symposium to highlight innovation in services for new arrivals

Access to timely and innovative services during their first years in Australia is critical to migrant and refugee families, ensuring a smoother transition to a new life here, a concept that will be explored at the upcoming Cultural Shift symposium. “It’s during the first few years of settlement that families face some of their greatest challenges, so it’s vital that NGOs and Governments alike provide innovative responses to these challenges,” said Settlement Services International (SSI) CEO, Violet Roumeliotis. “Services that build capacity in the process of settlement and the associated adjustments to a new country’s social, cultural, legal and other systems allow migrants and refugees to achieve a ‘cultural shift’ in their settlement journey.”  Ms Roumeliotis said SSI had brought together leaders and experts from the NGO and Government sectors to provide an insightful and engaging interactive program. The June 5 ‘Cultural Shift: symposium on supporting migrant and refugee families through settlement’ will be held in Parramatta. Registrations, which opened last week, will close on May 30.

Asylum seeker’s Olympic and academic dreams on hold

Hamed Ghorbani is a high achiever in his chosen sport and academia and a prime example of the talent and dedication found in many new migrants and people seeking asylum in Australia. Hamed, 27, from Iran, is living in the community on a bridging visa and is provided support by Settlement Services International (SSI) while he awaits a response to his application for refugee status. SSI is a leading not-for-profit organisation that provides a range of services in the areas of humanitarian settlement, accommodation, asylum seeker assistance and foster care in NSW. The organisation’s CEO, Violet Roumeliotis, said Mr Ghorbani’s achievements were impressive. “Mr Ghorbani is an elite athlete in the Olympic sport of handball, who has won a national club title with the University of Sydney and a silver medal for the NSW team at the national championships. “He is also a skilled researcher with a Master’s Degree in Sports Science and Physical Education. And in 2012, he was awarded a silver medal for best invention at the Taipei International Invention Show and Technomart for an ergonomic running machine that he designed. “Had Mr Ghorbani been born in Australia he could have strived to be an Olympic representative with a career in sports medicine research and development.”