Working With Water And Migrant Community


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Background information on our water education program working with english as second language teachers and students.

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Working With Water And Migrant Community

  1. 1. Getting the message heard – MurrayCare working with the Migrant Community People of non English speaking background and illiteracy – what has worked, what the challenges have been and who can help you get your message out to the broader community
  2. 2. Goals of current project  To educate international students and refugees about the water crisis in South Australia and how to reduce their personal water consumption.  Develop skills for participants to teach others in their community to reduce water use.  Develop a DIY education kit for educators to use in their own English classes/community group.
  3. 3. Why educate refugee’s and new immigrants?  Initially overseas students were reported by home hosts to be using the showers for long periods of time (up to an hour).  Many immigrants have been charged excess water use bills after huge amounts of water used in the house (one report of kitchen tap left on constantly).  Background research carried out in 2006 identified that water conservation messages were not reaching or positively impacting upon this sector of the community.
  4. 4. What has worked?  Preference is for activities that engage students rather than formal presentations. Examples include taking students to the River Murray Catchment to involve them in seed collecting, water analysis, bat box construction and fencing off areas to protect turtle breeding areas (eggs) from foxes.  “During the Stage 1 pilot, students have significantly excelled in their English language skills because the project was interesting, they could apply knowledge from their homelands to SA, and they were engaged by the hands-on activities (ie,water quality testing). The chosen method of workshops, catchment tours, and resource development, proved successful with new immigrants and Refugees achieving very positive results. “ Hera Sandison, ESL Tutor
  5. 5. Implementation ideas from partner planning planning workshop  Carry out Action Based Research, which evolves with the project rather than starts with a fixed idea and keeps to it – the researchers should be flexible to change approach as new information or strategies are uncovered  The educational resource could be a mobile trailer, loaded with information, pictures, glimpse kits and touch-table items  Highlight the possibility of fines, regulations and rules for water overuse  Use examples from person’s country of origin as a comparison, which allows cross-cultural learning (i.e. Australian’s to learn from migrants)  Use international symbols (rather than words) to convey conservation ideas  Prime Ministers citizen test could have question/s about water  Peer education has shown to be effective in achieving specific outcomes in other projects (this idea uses peers of the target group to deliver a message)  Educate children of migrant families in an effort to reach older generations  DVD (Men’s African Cooking example)
  6. 6. Challenges  Refugees are obviously traumatized by their experiences in their home countries, as well as disoriented by all the changes in their new lives, not the least of which will be a new language.  The broad range of linguistic and cultural backgrounds (refer next slide)
  7. 7. Challenges Language spoken at home in South Australia Male Female Total Speaks English only 620,013 642,768 1,262,781 Language spoken at home 35,913 31,130 67,043 not stated Italian 17,395 18,422 35,817 Greek 12,893 13,005 25,898 Vietnamese 6,752 7,012 13,764 Mandarin 4,152 4,802 8,954 German 3,492 4,465 7,957 Cantonese 3,801 4,121 7,922 Polish 3,170 3,746 6,916 Arabic 2,897 2,525 5,422 Serbian 2,120 2,151 4,271 Croatian 1,852 1,900 3,752 Spanish 1,623 1,817 3,440 Australian Indigenous 1,534 1,694 3,228 Languages Khmer 1,558 1,615 3,173 Dutch 1,357 1,790 3,147 Russian 1,175 1,499 2,674 Source:
  8. 8. Who can help get your message across? MurrayCare refugee education resources will be available in mid 2008. Organisations that have provided assistance:  National Accreditation Authority for Translators and Interpreters  Conservation Volunteers Aust.  Aust. Refugee Association  TAFE English Language Services  SA Immigration  African Communities Council of South Australia  Multicultural Youth South Australia  Immigration centres and service clubs (esp. Murray Bridge)  Ethnic clubs  ESL teachers and tutors  Migrant Resource Centres (esp. to target new arrivals)  WaterWatch  Community radio and TV stations  Migrant and refugee community newsletters and newspapers
  9. 9. Partners  AMLR and SA MDB NRM Boards, Universities, Local Councils, New Immigrant groups and individuals, Multicultural Youth SA, South Australian Water Corporation, TAFE SA, Refugee Association, Church groups, Urban Ecology and Global Education Centre.
  10. 10. Handouts  Multicultural Youth SA Training seminar flyer  Case study – Korean University students  Copy of this presentation