ASRC Philanthropic and Corporate Engagement Coordinator
Refugees and asylum seekers introduction day
Refugees and Asylum Seekers Genna Verbeek Chair and National Representative
Introduce team• Freya Langham – Global Health Officer, AMSA• Nicole Lafontaine and Kristijan Jovanoski – Melbourne Uni Global Health representatives• Maja Christensen – Deakin Uni Global Health representative• Rachael Purcell and Marianne Safe – founders and early establishment of Crossing Borders• Victoria Smith and Adam Peterson – Monash Gippsland Global Health representatives• Raamvi Vivek and Emma Martin – Ignite representatives• Caroline Macindoe – Crossing Borders representative on ERASP board• Sadid Khan – education coordinator• Yara Abo – project coordinator• Madhuni Herath – publications officer• Caterina Mezzatesta – Coordinator ERASP
Definitions• Refugee?• A refugee is a person who “owing to a well-founded fear of being persecuted for reasons of race, religion, nationality, membership of a particular social group, or political opinion, is outside the country of his nationality, and is unable to or, owing to such fear, is unwilling to avail himself of the protection of that country...” (1951 Convention relating to the status of refugees)• Asylum Seeker?• A person who has left their country of origin, has sought refugee status in another country, but has not yet been granted refugee status and is awaiting a decision on their application.
Crossing Borders• Aims – Direct Assistance, Education and Advocacy• Medical students able to assist in areas of need particularly with social activities and health education• Links in Melbourne: ASRC, Edmund Rice Asylum Seeker Centre (ERASP), Hotham Mission Asylum Seeker Program, Refugee Health Network (Dandenong Clinic), Professor Louise Newman (psychiatrist)... And more
What was done in 2011• Buddy system established at ERASP and weekly lunch at the centre• Detention centre visits commenced at Maribyrnong and Broadmeadows centres along with cricket/soccer and Harmony Day celebrations at the centre• Education sessions (as per following slide show from Sadid!)
Crossing Borders Direct Action Advocacy Education
Education is not the fillingof a pail, but the lighting ofa fire. W B Yeats
Last Year’s Projects• Crossing Borders orientation & overview of asylum seeker process• Monthly education sessions from experts in their field. – ASRC Health Clinic Doctor & ASRC Representative • Dr Janet Bodycomb and Manita Ray – Practical approach and insight into refugee health care • Dr I-Hao Cheng & Dr Kelvin Lau – Asylum Seeker Mental Health & Advocacy • Prof Louise Newman & Sister Bridget – National Project Launch • Kon Karapangiotidis & a person story from an asylum seeker.
Aspirations for the Future• Continue Monthly Education Events – New speakers & Old speakers with new topics• Refugee & Asylum Seeker Health Workshop – Practical day long workshop on refugee/asylum seeker healthcare.• Introducing International Health Module into university curricula• Life skills tutorials for Asylum Seekers – Pioneered from Griffith, tutorials given by students to help with day to day living in Australia• & hopefully much more
Plan for 2012• 2 training days – education sessions in morning with psych, medical and psychological trauma teams and practical sessions in afternoon (eg. ID, mental health, modules for Healthy Start program)• Monthly education sessions for med students/movie nights• Link with ERASP to continue – buddy programs and social events• Link with detention centres to continue – specifically to organise social events at the centres• Establish ‘Healthy Start’ program in Victoria – liaison between Geelong, Central and Gippsland groups – link with Dandenong Refugee Health Clinic
Griffith Uni’s plan• Education sessions for newly arrived refugees, in collaboration with Multicultural Development Association in QLD• We would like to work with Victorian Refugee Health Network and DIAC – have emailed, waiting for reply!• Modules: – 1 – General health care – 2 – Nutrition and wellbeing – 3a – Women’s health – 3b – Men’s health – 4 – Medication – 5 – Patient’s rights and responsibilities – 6 – Emergency – 7 – Using the GP and hospital services
Roles available• Representatives from Melbourne, Deakin, Monash, Biomed and Health Science Society – feedback to their global health groups• Volunteer coordinators – Recruitment of volunteers, answering queries, matching buddies at ERASP• Education coordinators – Organise two training days this year, plus a couple of other education events for medical students• “Healthy Start” coordinators – Set up Griffith uni program in Victoria, including liaison with interpreter students for assistance• Project coordinators – Organise programs and activities for asylum seekers at drop-in centre and detention centre activity days• Publicity-graphics coordinators – Advertising, emails, Facebook pages etc• Embrace Education Coordinator – establish link with Embrace Education and allow some of the asylum seekers and refugees we meet to have English assistance• Sponsorship coordinators – organise equipment and packs for refugees at Healthy Start sessions, sponsorship for excursions at ERASP etc.
Application Process• We will be electing the committee in the next fortnight• If you are interested in joining the committee, please submit an application answering the following questions: 1. Why are you interested in Crossing Borders? 2. Any previous experience with refugees/asylum seekers (not a requirement!) 3. What can you bring to the role/which roles are of interest? 4. Any visions/ideas that you think would be important for Crossing Borders this year• Please send to firstname.lastname@example.org• We will organise interviews based on the applications