Citizenship and Multicultural Interests Minister Tony McRae has approved grants to community-based organisations under the Western Australian Inclusion and Integration Grants Program.
ASeTTS, a refugee support group, will receive nearly $16,000 for a vacation program for refugee youth, aiming to target 20 young people aged 12-21 years, from refugee backgrounds mainly from the Sudanese and Middle-Eastern communities.
The program will provide an opportunity to engage in a range of activities which will deepen the youngsters’ understanding of their new environment, lessen stress and internal conflict associated with living in two cultures (home and broader society), build self-esteem and reduce social isolation, while providing a range of enjoyable recreational activities.
“This project is designed as an early intervention strategy, addressing issues of family breakdown, as well as linking participants with education, training and employment opportunities,” Mr McRae said.
“I am sure the program will be of lasting benefit both to the young people and their families and meet a critical need among new and emerging communities.”
The Grants Program is one of the key initiatives flowing from the Inclusion and Integration Action Plan approved by Cabinet in 2005 and was developed in recognition of the need for broad-scale change to address exclusion and social alienation of some members of religious and ethnic minorities, particularly those from new and emerging communities.
The grants will support community organisations with new plans, or building on existing ones, that promote integration, inclusion and active participation of minority groups in all walks of life.
“I am confident the projects will produce terrific results as they involve partnerships and collaboration between community organisations and the non-Government sector, facilitate interaction between minority groups and the broader community and promote active citizenship among minority communities,” the Minister said.
“In approving these grants, a strong emphasis has been placed on innovative projects for young people and those designed to remove structural and other barriers to participation, particularly of new and emerging communities.”
The next round of grants will be announced early in 2007 and the Office of Multicultural Interests will continue to work with community groups to develop their project ideas and assist them in the application process.
Minister's office - 9213 7150