Women's Capability and Engagement Strategy
Women, particularly those from culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) backgrounds, play a pivotal role in the effective settlement of their families in Australia. The capability and resilience of women tend to influence the entire family’s settlement outcomes, including the ability to socially integrate and achieve economic goals. This is due the central role women and mothers play in keeping families cohesive, supported and connected within community.
Access has made a conscious financial and social investment to explore, educate and enhance relevant support services to enable CALD women to develop their individual capacity and that of their families. Our proactive approach is a combination of research, consultation, pilot programs, partnerships, employment strategies and family support services. All are designed to build a strong foundation for women to take the next positive steps in their lives and those of their families. Our goal is to ensure the individual needs of CALD women are prioritised and addressed through the organisation’s integrated service delivery model that promotes social inclusion, safety, wellbeing and opportunities for everyone to participate within society.
Some of the strategies include:
- Investment in Research: Access is currently working on an Australian Research Council (ARC) Linkage Research Project to gain a comprehensive understanding of the resettlement experiences for women at risk.
- Women at Risk Caseworker: The HSS Program has a dedicated female caseworker specialised in the provision of case management and the facilitation of community development initiatives for women at risk. The caseworker provides intensive case management support for single women and their children to address complexities intersecting between gender, religion and pre / post migration experiences.
- Consultations and Community Engagement: Access hosts Community Leader Forums, across both Logan and Ipswich, to engage CALD communities in discussions regarding concerns, trends, challenges and opportunities, to generate their own community-led solutions to issues. These forums are attended by women who share ideas and help to inform future project priorities and actions.
- Employment, Training and Social Enterprise: Access assists CALD women to gain employment and Australian workplace experience through supported positions within the Spice Exchange and Harmony on Carmody Café.
- Staff Training: Specialised training for frontline staff to accurately identify and respond to domestic and family violence is critical for ensuring positive outcomes for clients. Access has partnered with Lifeline’s DV Alert Program to pilot their accredited package specifically designed for settlement support workers.
- Multicultural FDV (Family and Domestic Violence) Workforce: Access is currently establishing a pilot multicultural workforce to support people from CALD communities to engage with FDV support services. Qualified multicultural FDV officers will be specifically trained in domestic and family violence, to recognise, respond and make appropriate referrals to link CALD clients with FDV support services.
“I thank god for Immigration giving me the visa and for Access for the help that I’ve had. They raised me up. When I came my brain was broken, I couldn’t think and they encouraged me, they took away my negative thoughts and filled my head with positive thoughts. They opened me up so I can trust people and took away my fear”