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New services to help migrants and refugees in ACT/NSW



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CHRIS BOWEN MP

MINISTER FOR IMMIGRATION AND CITIZENSHIP

SENATOR KATE LUNDY MINISTER FOR MULTICULTURAL AFFAIRS

MEDIA RELEASE

20 June 2012

NEW SERVICES TO HELP MIGRANTS AND REFUGEES IN ACT/NSW

The Minister for Immigration and Citizenship, Chris Bowen MP, and Minister for Multicultural Affairs, Senator Kate Lundy, today announced four new projects in the ACT/NSW region will be funded next financial year under the Settlement Grants Program (SGP) to assist newly arrived migrants and refugees become self-reliant and successfully settle in Australia.

From 1 July 2012, ACT/NSW regional settlement agencies will receive a total of $188,439 in additional funding to deliver new services that will assist humanitarian entrants and new migrants to acquire skills and knowledge to fully participate in the community as soon as possible after arrival.

As part of the funding allocated to the region this coming financial year, the Riverina Community College in Wagga Wagga will receive a grant to provide training in first aid, music, arts, sewing and crafts to increase young people’s independence and knowledge of Australian culture.

“This project will help teach young migrants critical life skills and build self-reliance,” Mr Bowen said.

“The Queanbeyan Multilingual Centre has also been funded to assist new refugees develop independence and to help them to navigate, and gain access to, mainstream settlement services in the Goulburn, Queanbeyan and Eurobodalla regions.

“As part of this program people will be taught life skills and financial management strategies and will be educated about employment and health issues.”

Announcing four ACT/NSW region grants, Senator Lundy said the Australian Government reaffirmed its commitment to helping refugees and migrants settle into their new communities through the Settlement Grants Program.

“These grants provide practical assistance to new arrivals, helping refugees on the right path make the transition to their new life in Australia by developing their existing skills and building capacity,” Senator Lundy said.

“The many services supported by the settlement grants program will help migrants and refugees to settle successfully into their new communities, promoting social participation and assisting in their cultural transition to Australia.

“The community sector plays a vital role in supporting the settlement of migrants and refugees and I commend the successful organisations in the region for delivering practical assistance to help new arrivals settle in Australia.”

The Australian Government will spend $39 million in 2012-13 to deliver services to humanitarian entrants and new migrants to acquire skills and knowledge to fully participate in the community as soon as possible after arrival.

A list of successful applicants in the 2012-13 funding round is available at www.immi.gov.au/living-in-australia/delivering-assistance/settlement-grants.

Media Contacts: Bill Kyriakopoulos 0400 510 802 / Laura Stevens 0432 833 769 (Bowen) Jessica Hill 0407 926 077 (Lundy)