Today on Harmony Day we are embracing and celebrating all that is wonderful about Australian multiculturalism.
At Mercy Works we are very proud that one of our newest partnerships – Gateways to Employment for People Seeking Asylum – with the Romero Centre in Brisbane where we are seeing some wonderful achievements.
This new project addresses major barriers to employment for some of the 3,000 people seeking asylum in Queensland, with a particular focus on women, many of whom are survivors of domestic violence or have lived in detention for a prolonged period.
The Centre provides services to a diverse range of people seeking asylum from over 40 cultural groups including Afghanistan, Iran, Nigeria, Syria, PNG, Somalia, China and Sri Lanka and the goal of this project is to increase the level of sustainable employment for people seeking asylum who face barriers such as English language skills, lack of resources, lack of networks and cultural context.
So far 11 of our participants have exceeded their own expectations by securing employment and are now able to be financially independent and socially connected. They are paying rent and utilities independently!
“This Mercy Works program is a vital project to Romero Centre to directly address destitution, dependent and social, employment and health issues surrounding people seeking asylum,” says a spokesperson from Romero.
The life-changing impact of gaining meaningful employment means access to income and therefore shelter, food, education and health care, as well as self-worth, human dignity and social connectedness.
This vital program is hoping to successfully integrate migrants into our community and this Harmony Day we can’t think of a better way to celebrate inclusiveness, respect and belonging for all Australians, regardless of cultural or linguistic background and united by a set of core Australian values.