SSI News Blog

From the CEO: responding to the spread of the Delta variant

Over the last three weeks around 13 million Australians in four states and territories have been subject to COVID-19 lockdowns as the fast-moving Delta variant made its way into our communities.

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On the road to success and independence

Adam in his car

For the past six years, Adam Dib, a 28-year-old man living with cerebral palsy, has been determined to gain his driver’s licence.

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How Tatjana harnesses her experience of forced migration in her support of entrepreneurs

Tatjana Lukic-Co was just 13 years old when her family was forced to flee her home in former Yugoslavia, seeking temporary refuge in Germany before gaining asylum in Australia.

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From the CEO: Insecurity – the experiences of people seeking asylum and how you can make a difference.

How much does a country’s policies reflect onto the moral compass of its people, and what can we do as individuals to promote change?

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SSI offices turned into vaccination hub for asylum seeking communities

Yamamah receiving the vaccine.

On Thursday, SSI began facilitating the vaccination of people from asylum and refugee backgrounds out of our Parramatta office, as part of Western Sydney Local Health District’s outreach program to reach vulnerable communities.

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Multi-talented Syrian entrepreneur expands business into homemade organic products

A box filled with homemade organic products.

Refugee and entrepreneur Ashod Paloulian is a man of many talents. He trained to become a professional tennis player in his hometown of Aleppo, Syria, before relocating to Sydney to begin a new life.

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Talented refugee artist awarded with University of Sydney scholarship

A young artist beside her artworks.

Visual artist and Iraqi refugee Raneen Shamon arrived in Australia in 2017 from Jordan, where she had lived with her parents and younger brother for three years, waiting for their humanitarian visas to be approved.

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Syrian artist exhibits work exploring displacement and migration

A man smiling.

Visual artist Maher Al Khoury arrived in Australia seeking asylum from Syria four years ago. After graduating with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in 1988, he had a dynamic arts career working across the Middle East as a university lecturer and artist, with exhibitions in Syria and Abu Dhabi.

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Reconciliation through action

One of our biggest strengths at SSI is the diversity of our staff and commitment to being an inclusive organisation that supports the community and the wellbeing of our people.

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Young refugee mother finds education and employment in new home

A woman taking a selfie in her car.

Single mother and refugee Janet Ferdosian made the courageous decision to flee Iran in 2014 and seek temporary refuge in Turkey, where she lived for three years while waiting for a humanitarian visa.

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Making leaps and bounds down the pathway to independence.

Since she began receiving support from SSI’s Local Area Coordination (LAC) services 18 months ago, Jessy, a young woman with Autism Spectrum Disorder, has taken great strides towards living an independent life.

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Young refugee fleeing persecution forges prosperity in new home

A young man smiling at the camera.

23-year-old Irfan Ali Nasiri arrived in Australia from Pakistan with his mother and four siblings in 2016, reuniting with his father in Auburn, Sydney, after years of separation. 

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From the CEO: Australia’s roadmap to re-opening

Woman and young girl in kitchen happy

A question that has kept me awake on more than one night over the past year is, how do we emerge from COVID-19 as a stronger country – a country whose citizens remember that we live in a society, not just an economy?

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Keeping kids in foster care connected to family - National Families Week 2021

girl with white paper windmills on sticks

During National Families Week, we reflect on the importance of the family as a unit in the life of the child, and recognise the value of Life Story Work in keeping a child in care connected to their family.

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From the CEO: Myanmar and refugees in the Asia-Pacific

Karen mother and daughter smiling

Tsering Yangzom fled Tibet at the age of nine and lived in India for a number of years before coming to Australia as a refugee in 2020. She is one of many people from the Asia-Pacific region that SSI supports following forced displacement.


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Living and thriving as a young person with Asperger Syndrome

Like many university students, 20-year-old Bevan is focused on completing his degree and finding out what direction he wants to take in life.

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Tibetan refugee with prominent political profile helps translate for community

A woman giving an address.

Tsering Yangzom fled Tibet at the age of 9 due to the incorporation of Tibet into the People's Republic of China. She lived in a Tibetan village in India before arriving in Australia as a refugee with her husband, Kunkyab, in 2020.

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SSI supports refugee family with son on the autism spectrum

A family is captured with a father, young son and mother.

Iranian refugee Solmaz Hamdi Hesari arrived in Australia in April 2019 with her husband and their son, who lives with a disability.

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From the CEO: The Syrian civil war 10 years on

This month marks 10 years since the beginning of the Syrian civil war -- a conflict that has displaced more than half of the country’s pre-war population and left a staggering 80 per cent of the current population living beneath the poverty line.

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Achieving an equal future for women

Last week we celebrated International Women’s Day under the United Nations Theme for 2021: Women in Leadership: Achieving an Equal Future in a COVID-19 World.

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From the CEO: Crisis touches us all, but rarely impacts us equally

Illustration of working women

The COVID-19 pandemic is testing gender equity in ways that no-one expected. Women – and particularly women from culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) backgrounds – have been among the worst affected by the unprecedented events of last year.

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Business program provides human connection and localised support for Sydney city community

building in Darling Square, Sydney

It started with the notion that a thriving, resilient and diverse community is the indicator of a successful neighbourhood. So, add a newly regenerated urban area with a place-based business mentorship program, and see the community flourish.

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Sharing stories of migration and displacement through art

Portrait of Maher Al Khoury

“One common thread, that is not often acknowledged, is that anyone who calls Australia home, except for the First Nations people of this land, is a migrant of one form or another."

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From the CEO: Overcoming division in the shadow of the pandemic

two feet facing a line and each other

Monday this week marked one year since the first case of COVID-19 was detected in Australia.

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Online health and wellbeing workshops for refugee women during COVID-19 fosters community spirit

A woman smiling while holding some flowers.

Settlement Services International’s (SSI) Humanitarian Settlement Program Women Committee has partnered with Liverpool Women’s Health Centre (LWHC) and Mission Australia to encourage refugee women to stay healthy, informed and connected during the COVID-19 pandemic.

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