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The Archdiocese of Brisbane is partnering with Community Refugee Sponsorship Australia (CRSA) to launch the Archdiocese of Brisbane Refugee Sponsorship Initiative.

This initiative seeks to engage parishes, faith communities and schools to fundraise, support and build relationships with people as they settle into a new home in Australia.

CRSA is a registered, established charity who work to support community groups in their fundraising and welcome of people seeking to make a home in Australia.

Dear brothers and sisters, migrants and refugees! At the heart of the Gospel of mercy the encounter and acceptance by others are intertwined with the encounter and acceptance of God himself. Welcoming others means welcoming God in person! Do not let yourselves be robbed of the hope and joy of life born of your experience of God’s mercy, as manifested in the people you meet on your journey!

Pope Francis, Message, 17th January 2016

Two ways to get involved

Group Mentorship Program (GMP)

The GMP is designed for community members to fundraise and build social networks around a refugee household that has already arrived in Australia and has been referred to CRSA for further community support. 

A ‘Mentor Group’ is made up of at least five adults, from more than one family, who live in the same general geographic community.  

Mentor groups can be made up of parishioners, friends, family, neighbours, and colleagues – any group of Australians who feel they have the capacity to give time each week to helping a refugee newcomer.

Community Refugee Integration and Settlement Pilot (CRISP)

CRISP is designed for community members to fundraise and build social networks to welcome a household who has been granted a humanitarian visa but is still waiting to arrive in Australia.

The Australian Government has dedicated 1500 humanitarian visas within the CRISP program, and these Visas currently sit within the overall annual humanitarian intake.

For both initiatives, the groups will undergo training through CRSA and the Archdiocese, and will also need to complete pre-screening for eligibility.

Benefits for your community

 

Make a practical response to the ongoing refugee crisis

 

 

Foster  connectedness, unity and community life within your parish

 

 

Gain a deeper understanding of love of neighbour

 

Are you ready to help?

These are your next steps:

  1. Get a group of at least five adults from at least three different families together
  2. Assess your capacity to support a refugee household – your time and your finances
  3. Contact the Inclusion Team to start a conversation
  4. The Evangelisation Brisbane Inclusion Team will liaise with CRSA to support your group and prepare information for eligibility checks including Working with Children and Police Checks
  5. Begin fundraising
  6. CRSA will begin to work with the Archdiocese of Brisbane and your group to match a refugee household who best fits what your group is able to offer in support

Frequently Asked Questions

CRSA stands for Community Refugee Sponsorship Australia and is a registered charity in Australia. You can find out more about them on their website here.

You will be asked to commit to journeying with your refugee household for 12 months.

The financial commitment for the Group Mentorship Program is $4000.

While we will work within the specific needs of the family or household you are supporting, here is a list of things you can expect:

  • Assist in finding suitable employment
  • Securing suitable housing in a regional area with no migrant settlement services
  • Enrolling and supporting participation in education
  • Practicing English
  • Learning to drive
  • Understanding how to have overseas qualifications recognised
  • Accessing previously unknown local services ie finding a GP, navigating the local supermarket etc.
  • Making new friends.

You will be asked to commit to journeying with your refugee household for 12 months.

The financial commitment for the settlement pilot is anywhere from $7000 to $21000. This varies depending on the size of the household needing to settle in Australia. We will work closely with you to connect you with a household within your means.

While we will work within the specific needs of the family or household you are supporting, here is a list of things you can expect:

  • Meet the Refugee Household at the airport upon their arrival in Australia and provide transport from the airport to their temporary accommodation.
  • Provide safe and suitable temporary accommodation from date of arrival in Australia, until they secure appropriate long-term housing.
  • Provide essential items upon arrival including at least one week’s worth of food and groceries, seasonal clothing and at least one smartphone with a sim card and adequate data.
  • Provide weekly income support payments on a par with Commonwealth income support entitlements to enable the family to sustain themselves until they begin receiving income support via Services Australia.
  • Assist with registration for income support payments and Medicare through Services Australia.
  • Assist with opening an Australian bank account.
  • Assist with securing appropriate long-term housing.
  • Provide suitable and good quality furniture, appliances and other basic household goods for their long-term residence.
  • Connect with a local GP and any other healthcare provider required.
  • Assist with enrolment of children in school and adults in English classes.
  • Provide other forms settlement and integration support and guidance on an as-needs basis.

Unfortunately not. The Archdiocese of Brisbane is working with CRSA to organise parish and community groups to fundraise for, and practically and socially support refugee households in Australia or currently offshore Australia through the Group Mentorship Program (GMP) or Community Refugee Integration and Settlement Pilot (CRISP).

Our Refugee Sponsorship Initiative is working to support the overarching national work of CRSA and its programs. The Archdiocese of Brisbane may be able to provide information for other referral services to support the needs of people seeking assistance.

Contact

Contact Melinda for further information on how to implement the Refugee Sponsorship Initiative in your Parish or Community

Melinda Henry

Melinda Zakikhani

Refugee Sponsorship Initiative Project Manager

Email

zakikhanim@bne.catholic.net.au

Phone

(07) 3324 3521

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