WCC Annual Report 2014-15 - Page 16

COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT AND ADVOCACY Groupwork, community development and advocacy are backbones of our approach to delivering services to ensure that newly arrived community members are given real opportunities to have a say, make meaningful connections and participate fully in our community. Our four multi-faith, multicultural support groups all grew in membership , strength and diversity with 75-90 participants now attending weekly meetings with the support of dedicated volunteers. Information sessions have included oral health, nutrition, counselling, family violence, parenting, legal issues, road safety, fines and debts and seeking financial support. Began significant engagement with the Melbourne Market in its relocation to Epping and with other local employers, in the bid to support pathways into work Highlights Continued local orientation bus tours, which have been highly effective in introducing newcomers to a range of relevant services, building trust and familiarity Developed a new partnership with Plenty Valley Community Health to deliver services for our Refugee Support Group Produced the Alsediqua DVD with the Whittlesea Arabic Women’s Group and the volunteer expertise of Alex Haynes, highlighting the power of social support at reducing isolation and depression With the Whittlesea Career Pathways Employment Working Group, ran another highly successful What Employers Want Breakfast with over 100 job seekers, local service providers and employers Facilitated strong community involvement in the WCC CALD Family Violence and Iranian Hamdel Projects. Young men engaged strongly in discussions regarding consent, violence and power, gender, respect, and helping friends and family Distributed The Harmony, our Arabic Newsletter to over 300 community members monthly Strengthened the co-ordinating role of the Whittlesea Multicultural Issues Network, to ensure local service providers collaborate to address the needs of newly arrived communities in our area Facilitated the role of Arabic and Persian speaking women in the Faith in Unity Project. The women went on to organize a highly popular community based event for Refugee Week Fed into WCCs Family Violence Royal Commission submission and the particular experiences, needs and barriers faced by CALD communities Met with the Shadow Immigration Minister to discuss the future of Australia’s Humanitarian Resettlement Program Reasons for Assistance Other     18%   Migra5on     5%   Material/ Financial   Assistance   12%   Educa5on  &   Training     11%   Family  &   Rela5onships     5%   Accommoda5on     5%   Social   Par5cipa5on     8%   Life  Skills     8%   Document Help 10%   Legal     9%   Youth     9%   Whittlesea Community Connections Annual Report 2014 -15 16