10 things you can do to help this Refugee Week

Refugee Week 2024

10 things you can do to help this Refugee Week

Play your part in building a more welcoming Australia for refugees.

 
Have you ever thought about how you can help refugees feel welcome and safe in Australia?
It’s something Australian Red Cross is passionate about, and this Refugee Week we’ve put together 10 simple and practical ways you can help to build an inclusive and welcoming Australia - because we all have a part to play.

Australian Red Cross is part of the largest humanitarian movement in the world, the International Red Cross Red Crescent Movement. As part of this movement, we work with people displaced by conflict, persecution and violence all over the world.

Our role is to support people in the places they flee from, the places they pass through, and the places they arrive. We support without judgement or conditions, and our priority is to be there for those who need us most, no matter where they come from.

Here are 10 simple and practical things you can do to support people who have just arrived in Australia.

Donate

Even a small donation can greatly improve the lives of people experiencing vulnerability due to forced migration. Your donation will support our Red Cross and Red Crescent partners to continue their life- saving work to help people overseas and people in Australia locate missing loved ones caught in crises.

You can help by making a tax-deductible donation online or by calling 1800 733 276.

If there is a specific cause you want to give to or support, there are several appeals delivering humanitarian assistance:

Build a welcoming community

Use this wonderful Welcome Toolkit to ensure that new migrants in your community feel welcomed and
supported as they settle in. Our Welcome Toolkit was created for primary and secondary school students
seeking to foster a more welcoming Australia in their local communities. We hope that everyone can use
this toolkit as inspiration to act with kindness and humanity.

Actions in the toolkit include sharing a smile, inviting a family to share a meal with you, hosting an
“Unpack the facts: humanitarian quiz” and practising English with a newcomer.

Helping a family find a place to call home is also one way to create a welcoming community. Safe and
secure housing is key to our sense of dignity and well-being and is the foundation for creating a new life.
However, many newly arrived refugees can find it hard to secure a home in the private rental market. If
you’re a landlord or real estate agent, we’d love to hear from you.

Spread the word about our Restoring Family Links program to help find missing loved ones

The Australian Red Cross Restoring Family Links program seeks to support families by helping to find missing family members overseas where separation is a result of conflict, disaster or migration.

Many refugees experience family separation when fleeing conflict, persecution or other situations of violence. People can also become separated during the migration journey.

Help members of your community who may be living with this experience to know that Australian Red Cross may be able to assist. Call our RFL hotline is available Monday-Friday (AEST) on 1800 875 199 or email tracing@redcross.org.au.

Get informed and listen to voices of lived experience

It’s important for all of us to listen, learn and share the perspectives of people with lived experience of being a refugee.

These voices, as well as a range of broader resources, can help answer questions and clear up misconceptions about refugees and people seeking asylum.

To learn more about refugees and people seeking asylum, you can visit:

If you would like to organise for someone with lived experience on being a refugee or asylum speaker to speak at a school or community event, you can do so through the In Search of Safety program (WA only).

Volunteer your skills and talents with Red Cross

Australian Red Cross is always looking for talented and passionate volunteers who could offer help with English teaching, navigating life in Australia, or anything else new arrivals may need.

Find out if we have a volunteer opportunity that's right for you »

Register your interest with the Community Sponsorship Program

Community Refugee Sponsorship Australia (CRSA) has a Community Sponsorship Program that offers a practical way to provide hands-on support to refugees already in the country. Through their 100 in 100 Campaign, you can help form a mentor group of at least five people who live in your community and are keen to provide support and share their skills with refugees.

Support your local community

Settling into a new country as a refugee can be a long journey. There are many communities across Australia already welcoming refugees and people seeking asylum. Contact your local council, Welcoming Australia or local support groups to see how you can support local efforts.

These organisations also have some great resources:

Support your local community

Finding work and a place to call home is one of the highest priorities for refugees in Australia. Most are eager to work but find it hard to access the networks many of us take for granted. If you are an employer or know someone who is, then connecting someone to employment can transform their life.

Employers can contact Red Cross and our partner agencies can help you find great candidates.

These organisations also assist refugees and people seeking asylum to find work:

 

Listen to our Refugee Week podcast

We have recorded a special podcast episode for Refugee Week 2024 which explores challenges refugees and former refugees experience, especially with their mental health, from being separated from their families in their bid to find safety. This includes an intimate conversation with a de-identified guest speaker with lived experience who shares her journey as a refugee and how she was forced to make the decision of seeking safety and protection in Australia

Use our Lived Experience Framework to make your organisation more inclusive

Australian Red Cross’ Lived Experience Framework, developed by our Migration Support Programs, can help your organisation to be more representative and supportive of its people through centring the voices and expertise of people with lived experience of migration, refugee, asylum seeker, immigration detention and more.

The Framework is made up of principles and practical guidance to take in day-to-day work to ensure:

  • Meaningful support strategies for people with lived experience
  • Pathways are in place to amplify lived experience voice and representation in communications and advocacy
  • People with lived experience are actively participating and determining their own needs and solutions in programs, service design and research.

More in Migration Support

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Refugee Week: 10 things you can do to help

Play your part in building a more welcoming Australia for refugees.

Migration support for thousands of people each year

“I am with you on this journey. I hear you. You are not alone.”

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