Women from multicultural backgrounds smile for a group photo
Community workshops help families to feel confident interacting with Australian schools and other services. © NSW Department of Education and Communities

Supporting Refugees



Government agencies, non-government organisations and community groups often work together to support settlement needs in health, education, employment and basic services. Some examples of partnerships are:

Families in Cultural Transition (STARTTS)

Families in Cultural Transition, (FICT) is a series of participatory workshops delivered by STARTTS-trained facilitators in the preferred language of newly arrived parents, families and communities from refugee and refugee-like backgrounds. FICT addresses areas of concern to parents including parenting attitudes and practice in Australia, school life, keeping family relationships strong and how to use Australian support systems.

Sessions help participants to talk about the effects of refugee trauma on their families and children and to learn about how and where to find help when it is needed. FICT workshops help families to feel confident when interacting with service providers and become connected within communities, especially schools.

SPARK program (St Vincent de Paul Society NSW)

SPARK was a community based program offered by the St Vincent de Paul Society that engaged volunteers to provide education and settlement support to newly arrived children and families of refugee backgrounds. SPARK partnered with local schools to enhance the school's ability to support newly arrived families. Placing the school at the center of the initiative provided an important entry-point for families with early intervention, support and referral to other services.

Community Hubs

Community Hubs serve as gateways that connect families with each other, with their school, and with existing services. Dozens of community hubs operate under the National Community Hubs Program. The aim of the program is to engage and support migrant and refugee women with young children.