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Funding for community settlement programs.

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Funding for Community Settlement Programs

05 June 2008

The Hon Peter Garrett AM Federal Member for Kingsford Smith Minister for the Environment, Heritage and the Arts

Peter Garrett, the federal Member for Kingsford Smith, welcomed the Federal Government’s announcement that it would spend about $34 million next financial year on services to assist the integration of refugees and migrants.

A total of $214,739 has been allocated to two organisations in Kingsford Smith. The Sydney Multicultural Community Services Inc has received $67,626 for financial year 2008-09 and the Australian National Committee on Refugee Women Co-operative received grants of $147,113 for financial years 2008-09 and 2009-10.

“These projects will assist migrants and refugees in their cultural transition in Australia and build on their existing skills for their successful settlement”, Mr Garrett said.

“Migrants and refugees will also be assisted in overcoming barriers to accessing private rental housing accommodation which most face without rental history or referees in Australia,” said Mr Garrett.

“Organisations funded through the Settlement Grants Program are to be commended for their contribution to the positive and successful settlement of migrants and refugees in Australia,” said Mr Garrett.

A total of 230 projects from 168 organisations are being funded as part of the Settlement Grants Program to help refugees and migrants become self-reliant, contribute to the Australian economy and acquire the life skills and knowledge to settle in Australia.

Aim of the SGP

The aim of the SGP is to fund services which help clients to become self reliant and participate equitably in Australian society as soon as possible after arrival.

Settlement Needs The funding priorities of the SGP are determined through an annual assessment of settlement needs. This approach ensures that the services provided through the SGP are:

• targeted towards those communities and locations in greatest need of settlement assistance • responsive to changing settlement patterns and needs

SGP Funding A total of $32m is available for the SGP in 2008-09. Of this, approximately $22m is available to fund new projects, while the remaining $10m is for ongoing grant commitments.

SGP funding is:

• on a project basis • offered for periods of one, two or three years • based on financial years and is provided for a fixed period • expected to be fully committed at the beginning of each financial year • not recurrent, as priorities change over time.