Connecting to community

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Briana FioreHarvey-Waroona Reporter
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The Australian Red Cross, the Multicultural Services Centre, the Harvey Community Resource Centre and Harvey community members make hand-creams as part of the Harvey Women’s Program.Picture: Briana Fiore
Camera IconThe Australian Red Cross, the Multicultural Services Centre, the Harvey Community Resource Centre and Harvey community members make hand-creams as part of the Harvey Women’s Program.Picture: Briana Fiore Credit: Briana Fiore/Harvey-Waroona Reporter/Picture: Briana Fiore

A new initiative aiming to connect women after migration has kicked off in the South West.

The Australian Red Cross, Bunbury Multicultural Services Centre and the Harvey Community Resource Centre have joined forces to help new migrants in Harvey and the surrounding areas.

Red Cross project officer Sian Gair said the Red Cross received a Connecting Women grant to hold English language classes and help migrant women connect with the community.

“Harvey has a great history of migration so we thought it was a beneficial place to hold the program,” Mrs Gair said.

“Research says new migrants don’t have Australian friends so the group is for new migrants to connect with established members of the community and hopefully make friends.”

The Multicultural Services Centre in Bunbury is also helping with the Harvey Women’s Program.

The centre has a Settlement Engagement and Transition Support program that helps new migrants build on their own capabilities, become self-reliant and participate equitably in Australian society.

Case manager Julie Todter said there was a new cohort of migrants in the South West, including many in Harvey.

“Usually it’s a man who gets a skilled visa, they are working while their wife and children are at home. There’s then a need for the women to improve their English to gain (access to the) community,” Ms Todter said.

Ms Todter also said the group helped migrant women to get a driver’s licence.

Harvey Community Resource Centre manager Tracey-Ann Davis said she was thrilled to host the women’s group in such a multicultural community.

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