Refugee Support - Mercy Connect
Despite the small numbers of refugees in our country, those attempting to build new lives here need support.
For students adjusting to a new language, different social rules and educational practices, school can be a daunting place. Mercy Connect is our volunteer program, launched in 2008. It recruits, trains and supports volunteers to assist school students and their families settle in Australia. After training, the volunteers offer guidance to students as they settle into the Australian school system. They provide support that nurtures well-being and self esteem and improves students’ literacy and numeracy skills.
Mercy Connect Sydney – Running since 2008, Mercy Connect Sydney currently has 67 volunteers and operates in 27 primary, secondary, Catholic and Government schools, assisting more than 450 students each year.
Mercy Connect Melbourne – Launched in November 2011, Mercy Connect Melbourne has 121 volunteers and operates in 37 Primary, Secondary Catholic and Government Schools and runs three adult literacy programs.
Mercy Connect Ballarat – Launched in 2012, Mercy Connect Ballarat has over 30 volunteers working in 10 primary and secondary schools supporting over 50 students.
Mercy Connect Perth – Launched in 2015, Mercy Connect Perth currently has 45 volunteers assisting in 10 schools.
Toowoomba Migrant and Refugee Support (TRAMS)
The TRAMS project provides social participation, economic wellbeing, independence and community connectedness via enhanced weekly English classes for women from asylum seeker and refugee backgrounds.
TRAMS also supports asylum seekers through the Dignity Project which involves individual case work and legal advice and support.
Mercy House of Welcome
Mercy House of Welcome, located in Kilburn, a suburb of Adelaide, is a place for asylum seekers to come together and receive support from trained workers and volunteers. We help the asylum seekers in learning English and work with them to develop skills.
Another major focus for Mercy House of Welcome has become the necessity to provide pro-bono legal advice and support for asylum seekers to complete necessary applications for their Temporary Protection Visa (TPV) or Safe Haven Enterprise Visa (SHEV) as asylum seekers are no longer entitled to legal aid assistance.
Since it opened, Mercy House of Welcome has seen a rapid increase in the number of asylum seekers using the services provided.
Mercy House of Welcome is open four days a week from 10.00 to 4.00pm.
Meredyth Taylor is the Co-ordinator of Mercy House of Welcome.
To volunteer or donate to the Mercy House of Welcome please contact Meredyth or Emma on mobile no. 0434 450 666
- 65.3 million refugees, asylum seekers and internally displaced persons worldwide
- Developing countries host 86% of refugees in the world
- Top host countries are: Turkey (2.5 million), Pakistan (1.6 million), Lebanon (1.1 million) and the Islamic Republic of Iran (979,000)
- Total number of refugees and asylum seekers in Australia in 2015: 57,594
Source: UNHCR Global Trends 2015
Mentor Refugee Students
We are seeking volunteers to mentor refugee students in primary and secondary schools in 2017. Volunteers commit to at least half a day per week for one school year.
Experience working in a school setting is an advantage and ex primary and secondary school teachers are encouraged to apply.
Contact Mercy Works to be put in touch with the Mercy Connect Coordinator for your area.
Telephone: 02 9564 1911