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Home > Our community > Refugee Welcome Zones > Refugee Welcome Zone Forum 26 October 2023

Refugee Welcome Zone Forum 26 October 2023

With multiple crises, in multiple continents, we now have 110 million people globally displaced by war, conflict and persecution. In Australia, we have a relatively small, but significant, Refugee and Humanitarian Program, and many thousands of people living in the community who are in the lengthy, and challenging, process of seeking asylum.


What can be done at the local level to ensure we are meeting our obligations to uphold to rights of refugees and people seeking asylum, build inclusion and social harmony? Over 170 local councils from around Australia have signed the Refugee Welcome Zone declaration, making a public commitment to welcome refugees into their communities. In this Forum, we will look at how this commitment has translated into action, hearing from a diverse range of councils, from Mayoral advocacy initiatives, to practical measures to enhance outcomes in employment, inclusion and access to services.


Local government plays a key role in building stronger, socially inclusive communities, and plays a important part of the National Settlement Framework. In this Forum we will examine the specific policies affecting refugees and people seeking asylum and what can be done at the local level to support their needs.


Speakers include:

Paul Power, CEO, Refugee Council of Australia 

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Oliver Slewa, National Refugee Ambassador


Ann Ly, Taskforce Administrator – Local Government Mayoral Taskforce Supporting People Seeking Asylum

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Arif Mohammad Azizi, Community Connection Officer – Greater Dandenong Community Connector initiative

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Therese Watson, Community Advocacy Officer – Greater Dandenong Material Aid Consortium and Anti-Poverty Strategy

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Denise Gallanagh-Wood, Manager Community Development – Shire of Katanning

Thushy Kailanathan, Community Development Officer – Blacktown City Council

And… there will be the opportunity for participating councils to share details of good practice initiatives in their local areas.

Don’t miss this opportunity to learn about examples of effective collaboration between local governments, community organizations, and refugees, showcasing the impact of these partnerships.
Please register below.

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