Students from more than 60 different countries took part in the program, including Sudan, Iraq, Syria, Iran, China and Sri Lanka. With the federal government recently announcing temporary humanitarian visas for Ukrainians displaced by the Russian invasion, the Refugee Language Program may soon be accommodating more students.
“The program offers opportunities unavailable elsewhere to refugees who may have a temporary visa or even a community detention visa and are unable to study or work,” Ms. Carnus said.
The program’s volunteer base of teachers and tutors includes university staff, students and alumni and has been funded largely through the generosity of donors.
However, funding opportunities have been limited during the pandemic and the program now needs to attract more financial support from donors or partners to continue beyond 2022.
“In 2022, we hope to find new sources of funding to continue the incredibly important work of supporting those with few rights and contributing to university efforts to improve lives. The program has already helped hundreds of refugees to start a new life in Australia and we hope to continue to support many more,” said Ms. Carnus.
Those wishing to support the program can do so in a number of ways, including:
- Volunteer work for individual tutoring for students,
- Donate used or refurbished student laptops, or
- make a donation via the program’s fundraising page.
Visit the Refugee Language Program page for more information or contact program coordinator Lesley Carnus at [email protected]