Productivity Commission releases report into mental health

Worried business man sitting on step with hand on foreheadThe Australian Government's Productivity Commission has released its report into the economic impact of mental ill health. The report discusses some key influences on people’s mental health, examines the effect of mental health on people’s ability to participate and prosper in the community and workplace, and implications more generally for our economy and productivity. The report includes a fact sheet about the implications for people from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds, available in English, Arabic, Hindi, Punjabi, Simplified Chinese and Vietnamese. 

Visit the Productivity Commission Website to download the report and supporting material.

Round 2 Models of maternal and child health care for African women of refugee background

The University of Technology Sydney, NSW Refugee Health Service and Western Sydney Local Health District Multicultural Health are conducting a study on how maternal and child health care is delivered to African women from refugee backgrounds in Sydney.
The information collected from this Delphi survey will inform programs and services to better meet the needs of this community.
For more information and to participate in this study click here. 

Research Study - people from Chinese cultural background recovering from mental distress

研究课题 - 华人群体的精神困扰康复经历研究


The University of Sydney is conducting a research study aimed at understanding more about the experiences of people from Chinese cultural background recovering from mental distress.  If you are of Chinese cultural background and have experience of mental distress or are a family member and/or carer for someone who has experienced mental distress you are invited to take part in this research study.

Download the invitation to participate in this study here  (PDF 362KB)

Download participant information for people with experience of mental distress here (PDF 404KB)

Download more information for families and carers here (PDF 601KB)

National Carers Week 11 - 17 October 2020

National Carers Week 2020 Over 42 million hours of unpaid care each week image of woman in wheelchair with man standing behindRecognise and celebrate carers across Australia from 11 - 17 October 2020. From 11 to 17 October 2020, National Carers Week recognises and celebrates the 2.65 million Australians who provide care and support to a family member or friend with disability, mental health condition, chronic condition, terminal illness, an alcohol or other drug issue or who are frail aged.

For more information about what's happening during Carers Week visit the National Carers Week website.

Mental Health Carer Advocacy and Participation Survey

MHCN is currently co-designing a Mental Health Carer Network Register funded by the Mental Health Commission of NSW to support their Lived Experience Framework. As part of this project’s co-design, MHCN is conducting an online survey about what motivates carers, families, and kinship groups to get involved in advocacy activities and what barriers have impacted their ability to participate. This survey will also be used to create a list of interested carers who would like to be involved in our next round of consultation as well as Network Register activities, future advocacy opportunities, and training. If you are interested in participating in the survey click here. 

NSW Premier's Multicultural Communication Awards Open!

NSW Multicultural Communication Awards 2020 LogoThe NSW Premier's Multicultural Communications Awards (PMCAs) recognise excellence in the multicultural media and marketing industry. Nominations for the 2020 Premier’s Multicultural Communications Awards (PMCAs) are now open. The PMCAs recognise the valuable contribution multicultural media and marketing plays in our society by connecting people to their culture, identity, and language. These awards celebrate and recognise the important role journalists, editors and publishers in print, radio, television and digital media play. Nominations close Monday 19 October 2020.

Visit the Multicultural NSW website for further details and to nominate. 

New National Suicide and Self-Harm Monitoring System

Two people in colourful outfit clasping handsThe Australian Government's National Mental Health Commission, together with the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW), has established Australia’s first national suicide and self-harm monitoring system. The National Suicide and Self-harm Monitoring Project has been established as part of the national effort to address suicide and self-harm in Australia. The project will improve the quality, accessibility and timeliness of data on deaths by suicide and on self-harming and suicidal behaviours.  

Access the new National Suicide and Self-Harm Monitoring System here.

Multicultural Disability Advocacy Association (MDAA) NDIS Community Connector Program

The MDAA NDIS Community Connector Program MDAA Community Connectors Program supports people from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds to access the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS). The program helps people to apply for the NDIS, connect with local NDIS contacts and connect people who do not receive NDIS to other support services that may be helpful. 

For more information about the service download a flyer here. (PDF 385KB) 

Consumer and carer consultation for the NSW Older People’s Mental Health Acute Inpatient Unit Model of Care Guideline review

The NSW Ministry of Health's Mental Health Branch is reviewing the current Older Peoples Mental Health Acute Inpatient Model of Care guideline.  
In reviewing the model of care, the Ministry of Health would like to consult older people who have experienced care in an acute inpatient unit and their carers. Hearing directly from users of these services and their carers/families is the best way for us to improve the quality of our services and provide care that meets your needs. If you, a member of your family or someone you are caring for has experienced care in an acute inpatient unit please click here to complete a survey about your experiences

Migrant and Refugee Women in Australia Survey

Illustration of group of diverse women. Migrant and Refugee Women in AustraliaMonash Migration and Inclusion Centre & Harmony Alliance: Migrant and Refugee Women For Change have partnered to develop a national survey of migrant and refugee women’s views and experiences in Australia. The survey asks questions about migrant and refugee women and their experiences living in Australia. Findings of this study will be used to inform advocacy to improve outcomes for migrant and refugee women. The survey is voluntary and anonymous. Participants are invited to enter into the prize draw for Coles Myer Gift Cards at the end of the survey. To complete the survey click here. 

Mental Health Matters Awards Finalists Announced!

Mental Health Matters Awards Logo White text across orange backgroundWayAhead are excited to present their Mental Health Matters Awards finalists for 2020. The Mental Health Matters Awards are held every year in celebration of Mental Health Month. The finalists have been announced across a range of categories including the Youth Awards, Aboriginal Social and Emotional Wellbeing Award, the Rainbow Pride Award, the Leadership through Lived Experience Award, the Mental Health Matters Media and the Arts Award, the Mental Health Promotion Award and the Community Initiative Award. Winners will be announced on Facebook Live on 1 October 2020.

For more information visit the WayAhead website. 

MDAA Advocacy Support for Disability Royal Commission

Happy girl with her smiling brother who is in a wheelchairMulticultural Disability Advocacy Association of NSW (MDAA) has received funding to provide individual advocacy support anywhere in NSW to help people engage with the Disability Royal Commission. Advocates can help people to make a submission to the Disability Royal Commission, arrange accessible supports such as interpreters, and connect people to services such as legal, financial, and other supports. Advocates are also available to support people with disability to make decisions about engaging with the Disability Royal Commission.
For advocacy support, contact MDAA on 1800 629 072 9:00 am to 5:00 pm (AEST) weekdays or download further information here (PDF 1270KB)
People who are deaf or have a hearing or speech impairment can contact MDAA through the National Relay Service on 133 677.
MDAA can arrange free interpreting for people who need help in another language.

Models of maternal and child health care for African women from refugee backgrounds

Joyful mother with young daughterUniversity of Technology, Sydney, NSW Refugee Health Service and Western Sydney Local Health District (WSLHD) Multicultural Health are conducting a study to learn more about how maternal and child health (MCH) care is delivered to African women from refugee backgrounds in Sydney. This information will inform programs and services to better meet the needs of this community.

Those working directly or indirectly in the maternal and child health (MCH) care services in WSLHD and South Western Sydney Local Health District, are invited to complete this online survey by 31 October 2020 by clicking on the survey link here.

R U OK? Day 10 September 2020

R U OK? A conversation could change a life.10 September 2020 is R U OK? Day.  R U OK? Day is a national day of action when all Australians are reminded that every day is the day to ask, 'Are you OK?' if someone in your world is struggling with life’s ups and downs.
By inspiring people to take the time to ask 'Are you OK?' and listen, we can help people struggling with life feel connected long before they even think about suicide. It all comes down to regular, face-to-face, meaningful conversations about life. Asking 'Are you OK?' is a great place to start. Learn more about how to ask R U OK? and  how to continue the conversation by visiting the R U OK? Day website. 

Living Library 2020

In 2020 the Living Library will return for Mental Health Month in October. The Living Library is an opportunity to listen to community members and clinicians from diverse backgrounds sharing their personal stories of mental health, wellbeing and recovery. In 2020 the event will be streamed entirely online every Wednesday in October from 1:00 pm - 1:30 pm via Facebook Live on the SWS Wellbeing Facebook page. To watch: Before October, ‘Like’ the SWS Wellbeing page on Facebook so you see all Living Library information and updates. On each Wednesday, be on the SWS Wellbeing Facebook page ready to watch at 1:00pm. 

BEING Supported Mental Health Peer Support Line

Being Supported LogoBEING Supported is a free mental health support service staffed by trained and skilled peer support specialists who understand what people are going through, specifically in NSW. BEING Supported offers support to people who might be feeling isolated, lonely, depressed and/or anxious, or who would like someone to talk to. BEING Supported is open from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm and 6:00 pm to 10:00 pm / 7 days per week. Call 1800 151 151 or visit the BEING Supported website.

New peer work videos released

Peer work hub Growing the lived experience workforce logoThe NSW Mental Health Commission has developed new video resources for the Peer Work Hub website to promote the mental health peer workforce. The videos are practical resources that address key questions and challenges that employers may have around building or growing their peer workforce, including peer supervision, supporting people with mental health issues in the workplace and the difference between peer workers and carer peer workers.

View the peer work videos here.

Mental Health Carers NSW Survey

Take the SurveyMental Health Carers NSW is inviting carers to complete an online survey about your understanding of health and health care. The survey asks questions about how you use health services, talk with doctors and other health workers and how you look after your health. The survey will take about 20 minutes to complete and will be open until 18 Septmeber 2020. For further information and to complete the survey click here. 

Extraordinary Times, Extraordinary Responses

Extraordinary times, extraordinary stories bannnerThe extraordinary events of 2020 have tested the mental health community like never before. The Mental Health Services Learning Network (TheMHS) wants to hear how you or your organisation have responded so that they can share stories of your skills, resilience and hope. Send TheMHS a two-minute video and they will share your story with a wide network of people in mental health on social media and at their upcoming conference. Visit the Extraordinary Times, Extraordinary Responses webpage for more information and to submit a story before 25 September 2020.

COVID-19 Domestic and Family Violence Funding

Sad woman looking at phone, hand on foreheadFrontline organisations which are experiencing increased demand in services as a result of COVID-19 can apply for a share in grant funding. The NSW Government understands that domestic, family and sexual violence services have had to respond to changes in service delivery, complexity or demand of their program resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic. The $9 million COVID-19 Domestic and Family Violence Funding - Tranche 2 Grant program aims to support sexual, domestic and family violence services to respond to the challenges posed by COVID-19. For more information about the funding click here.

Pop up COVID-19 testing clinic Burwood

Pop-up COVID-19 Clinic BurwoodSydney Local Health District will offer COVID-19 testing at Burwood Park  from Thursday 3 September to Saturday 5 September 2020, from 10:00 am until 3:00 pm. The clinic is free and does not require referral or Medicare card. Download a leaflet about the clinic in English (PDF 1444KB)Chinese (PDF 1556KB)Italian (PDF 1478KB)Korean (PDF 1557KB) and Nepali (PDF 1553KB)

Pop up COVID-19 testing clinic for Lao community

COVID-19 clinic Lao Buddhist temple 4 SeptemberA pop up COVID-19 testing clinic will be operating at the Lao Buddhist temple in Smithfield on Friday 4 September. The clinic will be open between 9:00 am and 5:00pm at Wat Phrayortkeo, at 711 – 715 Smithfield Road, Edensor Park from 9 am to 5 pm.  

No appointment is required and no medicare card or referral is needed. 

Download information about the clinic here (PDF 341)

Expert Advice Matters

Expert Advice Matters When it matters most an expert is in reach. Turn to your GP.Following GP concerns about CALD patients avoiding healthcare due to fear of COVID-19, the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners has extended its Expert Advice Matters campaign to reach CALD patients. A website for patients, has been translated into Arabic, simplified Chinese, Traditional Chinese, Hindi and Vietnamese, and has practical information on how to access a local GP, telehealth and interpreter services. You can view the website here:

GPs are helping to spread the message by sharing videos of themselves speaking in different languages, urging patients not to delay routine care. You can find these videos on YouTube here:

COVID-19 Support for Australian Refugees (CSAR)

Father and child wearing face masks sitting on sofa looking at laptopThe CSAR website has been developed by a team of academics and research assistants from the University of New South Wales to provide refugees, migrants and conflict-affected Australians access to mental health support. The site aims to address the high level of confusion, fear, and uncertainty about COVID-19 amongst people who are from refugee and conflict-affected backgrounds, and amongst those who do not have English as a first language. The site includes links to a wide range of services and resources and a free trauma-informed mind and body exercise program, which is offered in English and Arabic.  
Visit the CSAR website here

Applications are now open for Native Swahili Language Speakers

Do you speak Swahili? If so, the National Accreditation Authority for Translators and Interpreters Ltd (NAATI) would like to hear from you. NAATI is the national standards and accreditation body for translators and interpreters in Australia. NAATI currently have casual work opportunities for native Swahili speakers to work as Role-players. Role-players are essential to interpreter certification tests, where real-life interpreting situations are simulated. For further information about being a Role-player for NAATI, visit

Healthy Mind

Hands holding smart phoneThe Black Dog Institute has created a new mental health website for people with an intellectual disability. 'Healthy Mind' is an Easy Read website developed with input from people living with intellectual disability to assist in managing mental wellbeing. The website helps people with Intellectual Disability to recognise and regulate their thoughts and feelings. It consists of five learning modules including lots of videos and activities. Visit Healthy Mind site by clicking here.

Tribunal and Public Mental Health Services Survey

Young women standing behind her mother with hands on her shoulderIn response to the COVID-19 pandemic, NSW Health has made several changes to the Mental Health Act. These changes impact the care of people with a mental illness. Mental Health Carers NSW has launched a survey to assist them to understand the impact on carers of these changes so so that they can advise carers and provide feedback to NSW Health and provider organisations.

This survey is aimed at carers of a person who has been a consumer (patient) in the NSW Mental Health System during the past three months. To complete the survey click here. 

Tackling the Challenge: Talking Men's Health

Smiling young man with curly hair wearing pink shirt smilingTackling the Challenge: Talking Men’s Health encourages men in South Western Sydney to share their stories of resilience through challenges such as migration, unemployment, mental illness and discrimination. The project, led by South Western Sydney Health Service, aims to make a positive impact on men’s health by sharing stories of overcoming challenges and thriving. Stories are available to read and share here.
Follow the project on SWS Wellbeing Facebook page
If you are interested in sharing your story please contact Brendan Bennett  at

Supporting LGBTQIA+ refugees and people seeking asylum

Pride Foundation Logo with rainbowPride Foundation Australia is seeking expressions of interest for projects for the betterment of LGBTIQA+ refugees and people seeking asylum in Australia. The project will be conducted within a 12-month period, with a total payment of $20,000. The Foundation encourages projects that are collaborations between refugee and asylum seeker agencies and LGBTQIA+ groups. For further information and to make an application visit the Pride Foundation Australia website

Grants for Temporary Visa Holders

Emergency relief grant  for vulnerable during COVID-19The NSW Government is offering COVID-19 Emergency Relief Grants for Vulnerable Temporary Visa Holders and specialist migrant and settlement NGOs. The funding is available to organisations providing direct emergency relief to vulnerable temporary visa holders who are not eligible for Commonwealth Government income support during COVID-19 and to support services to cope with the increased pressure they are experiencing due to increased number of clients and/or decrease in workforce due to COVID-19. Applications for grants close 27 July 2020. Visit Multicultural NSW for more information and to make an application

Temporary Visa Crisis Management Flyer

Temporary Visa Crisis Management Program

The Temporary Visa Crisis Management Program provides up to four weeks of case management support for people on temporary visas. This includes temporary financial assistance and general case support. The program runs until the end of September 2020. For further information phone Western Sydney Migrant Resource Centre on 02 8778 1200 or download a referral form here (PDF 111KB)

One Door Connector Program

One Door's 'Connector' empowers people living with mental illness to build their capacity to live well and connect with others. The program is designed to support individuals living with severe and persistent mental health conditions who are not receiving NDIS funding, with individual support and group-based activities that build their capacity to live well. Examples include: social support, fun activities and outings, money and budget assistance, linking to other services, and other daily activities. Local Government Areas covered for the Connector program: Blacktown, Parramatta, Auburn, Mt Druitt, Hills District, and Cumberland. 

If you would like to make a referral, which includes self-referral, please download and complete this form (PDF 276 KB) and email to
Contact Josh Manzione, Coordinator Connector Western Sydney on 0419 932 413 for any questions.

Mental Health and Cognitive Impairment Forensic Provisions Bill 2020

The NSW Parliament has passed reforms related to acts committed by people with mental illness and cognitive impairments. The Bill is a remake of the existing Mental Health (Forensic Provisions) Act 1990 which will be repealed. The Bill implements a number of important recommendations made by two reports of the Law Reform Commission. The Bill also carries over amendments made in 2018 following the Whealy review of the Mental Health Review Tribunal that better support victims of forensic patients. One important aspect of the bill according to Attorney General Mark Speakman and Minister for Mental Health Bronnie Taylor is that it alters the language of the verdict ‘not guilty by reason of mental illness’ to acknowledge the impact of the harmful acts. 

To view the Mental Health and Cognitive Impairment Forensic Provisions Bill 2020 click here. 

Mental Health Australia Statement: Cultural Diversity and Respect

Mental Health Australia LogoMental Australia have released a statement on Cultural Diversity and Respect.  As the world debates, and protests, over the divide between racism and respect, the statement affirms Mental Health Australia's position on cultural diversity. The statement asserts that today, in 2020, people in our community are still marginalized, treated poorly or discriminated against because of race, gender, disability, age or sexuality and that these are social determinants of health and such discrimination is clearly detrimental to one’s mental health.

View the full statement here

Australian Mental Health Awards 2020

Happy diverse group of peopleEach year during the National Mental Health Month, Mental Health Foundation Australia recognises and celebrates the achievements and contributions of individuals, organisations and groups working tirelessly to stamp out stigma and raise awareness for Mental Health. To also provide support and build resilience in those lives impacted by Mental Health across Australia.

Nominations are invited from those who have made a significant contribution towards a positive mental health sector; provided an inspirational role model for the sector to follow and demonstrated excellence  or innovation in service delivery. For more information and to nominate someone visit the Mental Health Foundation website. 

Expressions of Interest - WayAhead Translation Project

WayAhead are currently seeking Expressions of Interest for an exciting new translation project which will provide culturally relevant mental health information to people from culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) backgrounds. The project is designed to help reach people who might not access information about mental health through currently available sources, and those who may have difficulty with written fact sheets. Click here for more information

Living Library 2020 - Save the date and Expression of Interest

Living Library 2020 Save the Date and Expression of InterestIn 2020, the Living Library will return for Mental Health Month. This year, the event will be streamed entirely online. The Living Library is an opportunity to listen to  community members and a clinician sharing their personal stories of mental health, wellbeing and recovery.

If you would like to be a Living Library speaker in 2020 or to learn more, go to: The organisers encourage speakers who are young people, older people, LGBTIQA+, refugee, and from migrant communities

Click here to download a flyer about the Living Library PDF 221 KB

Mental Health Month Small Grants Now Open

Two smiling women celebrating Mental Health MonthEach year Way Ahead offers a number of small grants to assist the staging of mental health promotion activities or events during October’s Mental Health Month. There are five categories of grants available including the Culturally and Linguistically Diverse (CALD) grants. CALD grants are for projects focusing specifically on Culturally and Linguistically Diverse (CALD) communities. In this category the judges are looking for projects which are especially creative or innovative; applications from small, community-led organisations or groups; projects which respond to the needs of their local/target community; projects which have a clear mental health focus and projects with a strong link to the Mental Health Month theme (“Tune In”).

For more information and to apply for a Small Grant click here.

2020 National Carer Survey  Make a difference for carers across our country and have your say! Complete it online now2020 National Carer Survey

The 2020 National Carer Survey will help Carers NSW and their partners to advocate for carers, influence policy development, and improve service delivery for carers into the future. The survey will take around 20 minutes to complete. If you are a carer and are interested in completing the survey click here.

NSW Humanitarian Awards Applications Now Open

STARTTS NSW Humanitarian Awards with past winners Each year, as part of National Refugee Week in June, the STARTTS NSW Humanitarian Awards provide an opportunity to acknowledge and thank those who have made an exceptional positive contribution towards refugee issues in the state of NSW. The Humanitarian Awards also provide a chance to further promote the hard work and achievements of both individuals and organisations in various fields that play a substantial role in improving the lives of refugees. Anyone can nominate, and anyone can be nominated!

Nominations Close 31 May 2020. Click here for further information and to nominate someone.

Nominations for Mental Health Matters Awards 2020 Now Open!

Mental Health Matters Awards LogoThe Mental Health Matters Awards recognise the outstanding achievements of individuals, groups and organisations that have worked to improve understanding, awareness, service provision and the general mental health of communities in NSW over the past year (2019 — 2020). Do you know someone doing excellent work in mental health? You can nominate yourself, a program you work for/with, or a program or person you know. Nominations are open in a range of categories including the Community Initiative Award, which recognises small, grass-roots, community-run groups, particularly Culturally and Linguistically Diverse community groups.
For more information and to make a nomination for an award visit the Way Ahead website. 

NSW Interpreter Scholarship Program

Interpreter Scholarship ProgramMulticultural NSW is offering fully funded scholarships to study an online skill set course through RMIT University to become a Recognised Practicing Interpreter for people from new and emerging communities, or languages where there is a critical need. The program is offered to people who meet the eligibility criteria and speak one or more of the following languages: Burmese, Chinese-Chiu Chow, Creole, Dinka, Fijian, Fiji Hindi, Igbo, Khmer, Kinyarwanda, Kirundi, Krio, Kurmanji Kurdish, Mongolian, Nepali, Oromo, Samoan, S’Gaw Karen, Somali, Swahili, Telugu, Tetum, Tigrinya, Tongan, Twi, Urdu or Uyghur.

If you fit the criteria and are interested in becoming an interpreter visit the Multicultural Website for more information.

Red Cross Emergency Relief and Casework Support for People on Temporary Visas

The Australian Red Cross has received funding from the Australian Government for the next six months to deliver emergency relief and casework support for people who are on temporary visas. These are emergency relief payments, not income support and provide one-off, limited amounts to help people with essential needs like food and medicine. The funds are for people on temporary visas who have no way to support themselves and who have urgent needs. If you believe or your client may be eligible for this support visit The Australian Red Cross website for further information. 

One Door Bilingual Mental Health Support Service

In times of uncertainty it is important to take care of your mental health, just as you would with your physical health. If you have lost your job, feel lonely at home, feel worried or overwhelmed, or simply just want to talk One Door can help. One Door's Bilingual Mental Health Support Service is offering people living with mental illness, their families and carers who live in Auburn and neighbouring suburbs, support in finding the right services. One Door have bilingual mental health support workers who speak Arabic, Mandarin, Vietnamese.and Farsi , Dari. 

Contact One Door Bilingual Support Service on 8737 5566

Visit the One Door Bilingual Mental Health Support Service website for more information 

Download a Flyer about this service here (PDF 6.3MB)


FECCA Access and Equity Survey 2020

Happy diverse group of peopleThe Federation of Ethnic Communities’ Councils of Australia (FECCA) is the national peak body representing Australians from culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) backgrounds. Over the years, FECCA has produced Access and Equity reports for the Government based on consultations and surveys across Australia. This survey is designed to get insights and opinions from people from CALD backgrounds about your experience finding and using government services.  The survey will take about 10-15 minutes to complete. For more information and to complete the survey click here.

Embrace Multicultural Mental Health - Feedback Survey

Embrace Multicultural Mental HealthThe  Embrace Multicultural Mental Health Project provides a national focus on mental health and suicide prevention for people from culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) backgrounds. Embrace would like to hear from you about your experiences, knowledge, understanding and how you would like to receive information about mental health, mental illness, and wellbeing. If you would like provide feedback complete the Embrace survey here.

How can aged care services be better?

Smiling older womanDo you have ideas about how aged care services can be better for people from migrant and refugee backgrounds? The Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety wants to hear from you. 

The Federation of Ethnic Communities' Councils of Australia (FECCA) provides information about how you can tell the Royal Commission what you think, in your own language. Visit the FECCA website for more information.

Harmony Week

In these difficult times many of us will need to change, cancel or postpone Harmony Week activities. In lieu of pubic events to celebrate, the Australian Race Discrimination Commissioner has prepared a short Harmony Week Address reminding us all of our responsibility to end racism. You can view the message by following the links below:
Race Discrimination Commissioner’s Facebook:

Multicultural March

Women in colorful clothesIt's Multicultural March, a month long celebration of our cultural diversity in NSW. In NSW we come from more than 307 ancestries, speak 215 languages and dialects, and follow 148 different religious beliefs. In Multicultural March across the state, there are festivals and events that are bursting with energy, colours and flavours. Saturday 21 March is Harmony Day and the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination. Take a look at the Multicultural March calendar of events, visit


The NSW Refugee Health Service Walking Program

Group of diverse happy people outdoorsThe NSW Refugee Health Service’s volunteer led walking program for newly arrived refugees is up and going! The walking program aims to not only promote physical activity but reduce social isolation and connect/ introduce new arrivals to various physical and social activities that are taking place in Liverpool and Fairfield. The walking program runs every week in either Liverpool or Fairfield respectively and is led by trained volunteers from the NSW Refugee Health Service.

Download a Flyer in English about the program here (PDF 1789 KB)
Download a Flyer in Arabic/عربي about the program here (PDF 1830 KB)
Download a Flyer in Dari/دری about the program here (PDF 1856 KB)
Download a Flyer in Farsi/فارسی about the program here (PDF 1843 KB)

Vinnies Xtra Eyes and Escape the Noise Kits

St Vincent De Paul's (Vinnies) Access and Inclusion team have developed two new resource kits for people with low vision or sensory overload. 

Xtra Eyes Kit

The primary aim of Xtra Eyes is to provide an inclusive and comfortable space for people who may have low vision. It contains a number of items that may assist people who have low vision: Magnifying glass, magnifier strip, magnifier sheet, laminated conversation cards, whiteboard marker, wipes. Download a Flyer about the Kit here (PDF 455KB).

Escape the Noise Kit

This kit is being provided to community organisations and businesses as a resource to support people who may experience sensory overload. Contents of the Headphone Kit: drawstring bag, information booklet, display poster, noise reducing headphones, multiple single use earplugs, wipes. Download a Flyer about the Kit here (PDF 589KB).

NSW Women's Week 2 - 8 March 2020:  a celebration of women

NSW Women's Week 2-8 March A celebration of womenNSW Women’s Week has been established as a centrepiece to support the improvement of the lives of women in NSW. Through a series of events and activities, it celebrates the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women, and promotes gender equality. 
The week coincides with International Women’s Day on Sunday 8 March. The theme for International Women’s Day this year is “An equal world is an enabled world”.

Visit the Women NSW Website for more information about events and activities happening across the week. 

NSW Health wants to hear from people with Intersex variations

Development of the NSW LGBTI Health Strategy Survey with people with intersex variations UrbisThe NSW Ministry of Health is in the process of developing the first NSW Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Intersex (LGBTI) Health Strategy. One part of the strategy will be to improve the experience of people with intersex variations with healthcare in NSW. As part of developing this strategy a research company called Urbis is running a survey and some face-to-face and phone consultations with people with intersex variations to learn what  your health needs are? What’s working well? What’s not working so well? and How could services be improved?

If you are interested in participating: Complete the online survey before Monday 16 March 2020 at 5pm

or Register to take part in a consultation session before Monday 2 March 2020 at 5pm

Peter Meyer Fund - Applications are open!

Peter Myer Fund 2020 Young Man wearing glasses standing against red backgroundThe Peter Meyer Fund of Schizophrenia Fellowship NSW Ltd invites applications from researchers for the Peter Meyer Research Grant of $10,000.

The Peter Meyer Fund provides financial support for research projects into schizophrenia, including research into the causes of schizophrenia, treatments for schizophrenia, psychosocial factors and how they relate to schizophrenia and psychosocial support services for people with schizophrenia. To be elgible for the grant researchers must be based in NSW and be under 35 years of age. The project must be completed within 2 years and joint funding with other funding organisations would be considered.

For more information about the grant and to make an application visit the One Door Mental Health website.

Liverpool’s Living Library is returning in 2020 for Mental Health Month

Save the Date - Wednesday 14th October 2020.Living Library

The Living Library program helps the community understand the lived experience of mental illness, it tackles stigma and normalises how and where to seek help. Instead of borrowing a book, a story is borrowed through a speaker. Speakers talk to and take questions from an audience. 

Find out more about what the Living Library is and how you can participate here (PDF 558KB)


DrugInfo 1300 858 584 hands claspedThe Alcohol and Drug Foundation’s DrugInfo helps thousands of Australians every year by listening, providing the facts and sharing contact details for counselling, treatment and support services. It’s free and confidential.

Get in touch:
Phone: 1300 85 85 84
(9am-5pm, Mon-Fri)

South Western Sydney Recovery College - Men's Focus Group

The South Western Sydney (SWS) Recovery College is seeking interested men to establish a Men’s Focus Group to develop male specific learning and education courses/workshops. The SWS Recovery College Men’s Focus Group will be instrumental in co-designing and informing SWS Recovery College of courses that will best meet the needs of men to support them in their recovery.
Expressions of Interest will close Friday 28 February 2020.

For further information and instructions on how to express interest click here (PDF 389KB)

Australian Multicultural Ambassador Program

The Mental Health Foundation Australia invites all multicultural community members to join its Australian Multicultural Ambassador program 2020. The aim of the program is to further engage multicultural and Indigenous communities in promoting positive mental health and well being, through a network of dedicated volunteers throughout Australia. It will also provide community leaders with an official platform to become involved in the introduction and coordination of Mental Health related programs in their communities, as well as opportunities for professional development.

Applications close 28 February 2020

For further information and to make an application click here.

    Support for Bushfire affected communities

    Fireman and young man holding smoke alarm standing in front of fire truckThe following links provide information and resources to assist culturally and linguistically diverse communities affected by bushfires.

    Bushfires can have a significant impact on our mental health. The following resources aim to provide information about coping with the ongoing mental health impacts of the fires and other traumatic events.  

    Digital Storytelling Workshop - for Syrian/Iraqi Youth with Disabilities

    Researchers at the University of New South Wales (UNSW), Sydney and the Community Migrant Resource Centre are seeking volunteer research participants to learn about using art and film making to understand the experience of living with disability.

    Download a brochure about this project in Arabic عربي here (PDF 1278KB)
    Download a brochure about this project in English here (PDF 1066KB)

    Community Languages Multicultural Grants

    DecorativeThe Australian Government is inviting applications through a demand driven process to apply under the Multicultural Affairs and Citizenship Program: Community Languages Multicultural Grants Stream One in 2019-20 and 2020-21. The objective of the grant opportunity is to support the administration of community language schools through the provision of funding based on student enrolment numbers to help cover school operating costs.

    Applications for stream one grants close 17 February 2020

    For more information and to apply for grants click here

    Support the young carer research project!

    DecorativeCarers NSW wants to hear from young carers (aged 16-25 years and under) about their needs and experiences caring, studying, working, participating in their community and accessing services. Carers NSW plans to conduct qualitative research in the first half of 2020 to complement the Carers NSW 2020 Carer Survey. Participating in the project is a great way for young carers to provide qualitative feedback about what is and isn’t working for them and how to service providers might better engage young carers in accessing support.

    Express your interest in participating in the project here. 

    Cumberland Community Grants Program

    Diverse group of peopleCumberland Council's Community Grant's Program provides grants to local not for profit organisations and individuals for projects which aim to develop a more vibrant, sustainable and inclusive community.

    Round two will fund projects in the following streams: community events, community participation, creative cumberland., minor capital works and small equipment grants program.

    Applications open 29 January 2020 and close 26 February 2020. For further information visit

    Are you interested in becoming a Bilingual Community Educator (BCE)?

    Smiling group of multicultural people standing against wallThe South Western Sydney Local Health District (SWSLHD) Health Promotion Service is currently recruiting interested eligible people to be trained to become BCEs. BCE’s are trained to deliver health education programs to culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) communities.

    SWSLHD is currently recruiting BCEs in the following languages:

    • Male BCEs: Arabic, Assyrian, Vietnamese, Cantonese and Mandarin
    • Female BCEs: Hindi (Fijian Hindi), Vietnamese, Dari, Nepalese and Samoan

    For further information about this opportunity download a Flyer here (PDF 720KB).

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