Joyful young African woman holding baby

Refugee Week is being celebrated across Australia this year between 16 June and 22 June 2024. Refugee Week promotes greater awareness of refugees, the issues they face and the contributions refugees are making to the Australian community.

The theme for Refugee Week 2024 is 'Finding Freedom: Family'. Every day millions of people across the world embark on dangerous journeys for the sole purpose of finding safety and freedom. From Australia to nations across the globe, settling into a new environment after experiencing the perils of a refugee’s journey can also provide the opportunity to live, to love and to dream. Crucial for many of these journeys is the power of familial bonds and the important role families play in providing solace, support and a sense of belonging to those forced to flee their homelands.

For more information about Refugee Week celebrations across Australia visit the Refugee Week website here


Transcultural Mental Health Centre's Work with Refugees

The Transcultural Mental Health Centre works with refugee communities and health professionals to support the mental health of refugees across NSW. Follow the links below to find out more about our work with refugees and to view our resources to assist those working with refugees.

 

TMHC's Refugee Week TransFORUM 2024 'Helping refugee families thrive' Resources

   
 

This year’s TransFORUM for Refugee Week was focused on Families and below is a list of resources discussed during the webinar. This is not an exhaustive list but a start in providing support to families. A recording of the webinar will be shared soon on this page

List of relevant services including NSW Refugee Health Services can be found on our Refugee Mental Health Program page

Child and Family Health, Western Sydney Local Health District (WSLHD) servicesare free with a Medicare card and live, work or study in the Cumberland, Parramatta, Blacktown or Hills local council areas.  More information, including details of their counselling service is available here.
If you are located in another LHD, check your local community health services and what is available for child and family health.

Multicultural Education, NSW Department of Education

Multicultural Education within the NSW Department of Education promotes education for all students about cultural diversity, community harmony, anti-racism, and intercultural understanding. Additionally, the team develops and promotes programs that meet the specific needs of students learning English as an additional language or dialect (EAL/D) including students from refugee backgrounds and newly arrived students. Multicultural Education provides services that facilitate communication and engagement with parents/carers and communities from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds.

Multicultural Education

Contact Multicultural Education

Other Transcultural Mental Health Centre services for refugee families include:

In response to questions and issued discussed at the webinar, other relevant websites for more information and learning include:

 

 

Finding Freedom in Sharing our Stories Video Resource

'Finding Freedom in Sharing Our Stories' Video Resource

 

 

The ‘Finding Freedom in Sharing Our Stories’ video resource, developed by the NSW Transcultural Mental Health Centre (TMHC), explores the theme of ‘Finding Freedom’ chosen for Refugee Week 2023 – 2025.

‘Finding Freedom in Sharing Our Stories’ explores what ‘Finding Freedom’ means to refugees who’ve embarked on diverse journeys to find freedom and safety, informs us about the many challenges they have endured and continue to face, as well as provide an insight into the many contributions made by refugees to our community.

From Australia to nations across the globe, settling into a new environment after experiencing the perils of a refugee’s journey is challenging and difficult, no two stories are the same. The journey can also provide the opportunity to live, love and dream. We hope this video captures that spirit. We would like to extend a very special thank you to the participants who have generously shared their experiences and provided insight into this and the Western Sydney Local Health District, Multimedia Unit for their support in the production of this video.

This video was developed by the Transcultural Mental Health Centre's 'Capacity Building in Strengthening the Mental Health of New and Emerging Refugee Populations'. This program works collaboratively with communities and service providers to strengthen and support the wellbeing of new and emerging refugee populations. The program has two components that work in tandem: building community capacity and building capacity within mental health services. 

Refugee Week Resources

Refugee Council of Australia

The Refugee Council of Australia has produced a range of downloadable resources for Refugee Week, including a poster, customisable CANVA resources, Refugee Week logo, resource kits and information about using a Welcome to Country or Acknowledgement of Country at your Refugee Week Events. The resources can be viewed and downloaded here.

Multicultural Health Communication Service

On World Refugee Day 2023, MHCS held  the Engaging Effectively with Refugee Communities Forum to highlight the importance of promoting access, equity, and preventative health care. The forum showcased new multilingual health resources to support those working with refugee communities. 

STARTTS - NSW Service for the Treatment and Rehabilitation of Torture and Trauma Survivors 

STARTTS is a key partner in Refugee Week celebrations and organises the annual NSW Humanitarian Awards given out at the NSW launch of Refugee Week every year. Visit the STARTTS Refugee Week page here.

  

Resources to support Refugees

 

NSW Refugee Health Service

The NSW Refugee Health Service aims to promote the health of people from a refugee background living in NSW by assisting refugees and the health professionals who work with them.
www.swslhd.health.nsw.gov.au/refugee

Refugee Trauma & Recovery Program - UNSW Sydney

The Refugee Trauma and Recovery Program (RTRP) is a research program, within UNSW Sydney, dedicated to understanding the psychological and neurobiological effects of refugee trauma and pathways to recovery. Contact RTRP directly at: [email protected] or 0477 407 752 
www.rtrp-research.com

Mental Health Community Living Supports for Refugees

A community-based program located in seven Local Health Districts (LHDs) that provides support for refugees and asylum seekers with mental health issues to live and participate in the community in the way that they want toClick here for a list of local providers.

NSW Multicultural Centre for Women's and Family Safety 

The Centre promotes culturally appropriate, evidence-based and community informed responses to domestic, family and sexual violence in NSW, including in regional and rural areas. www.ssi.org.au/our-services/domestic-family-violence/safety-centre

STARTTS - NSW Service for the Treatment and Rehabilitation of Torture and Trauma Survivors 

STARTTS provides culturally relevant psychological treatment and support, and community interventions, to help people and communities heal the scars of torture and refugee trauma and rebuild their lives in Australia.
www.startts.org.au

Settlement Services International (SSI)

SSI is a community organisation and social enterprise business that supports newcomers and other Australians to achieve their full potential.

Phone: 02 8799 6700
Email:[email protected]Website: www.ssi.org.au

Refugee Council of Australia

The Refugee Council of Australia is the national umbrella body for refugees and people seeking asylum and those who support them.
www.refugeecouncil.org.au

Specialist Refugee Team for refugee students and their families

The Refugee Student Counselling Support Team offers psychological expertise to schools to support refugee students and their families.
education.nsw.gov.au/student-wellbeing/counselling-and-psychology-services/school-counselling/refugee-teams

Asylum Seekers Centre

The Asylum Seekers Centre provides practical and personal support for people living in the community who are seeking asylum.
https://asylumseekerscentre.org.au

  

Resources to learn more about Refugees

Films to watch

www.refugeeweek.org.au/films-to-watch-during-refugee-week

Books to read

https://www.refugeeweek.org.au/books

Kaldor Centre for International Refugee Law

www.kaldorcentre.unsw.edu.au

Refugee Camp in my Neighbourhood

https://refugeecampauburn.com.au

Refugee education for NSW schools

www.roads-to-refuge.com.au