Welcome to MYAN's December eNews, our final newsletter for the year!
What a year it has been! As we reflect on our work in 2021 and prepare for 2022, MYAN would like to thank our fabulous staff, Governance Group, state and territory partners, Youth Ambassadors Network, State and Territory Advisory Network, our funding bodies, and all those in our networks across Australia for working with us to promote the rights and interests of young people from refugee and migrant backgrounds. And of course, a huge thank you to the young people from across Australia who are at the centre of everything we do.
2021 was a year where the COVID-19 pandemic continued to evolve and impact all of us, particularly those most disadvantaged in our communities. Much of our work in 2021 continued to focus on understanding and responding to the impact on young people from refugee and migrant backgrounds across Australia, including our work on the COVID-19 vaccine roll out.
2021 saw new faces join the MYAN team and our Youth Ambassadors Network and we were excited to end the year with another dynamic FUSE Summit!
From all of us at MYAN, we wish you a very safe and happy holiday season, and we look forward to working with you all in 2022.
Rana, Shannon, Martika, Andrew, Ali and Diana
Read on to catch up on the latest national news and activities, opportunities and resources.
KEY UPDATES FROM MYAN
FUSE 2021- NATIONAL MULTICULTURAL YOUTH SUMMIT!
On December 4th and 5th, 2021, FUSE- Australia’s only national multicultural youth leadership summit, once again delivered a transformative 2-day leadership event. In response to the ongoing challenges brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic, FUSE 2021 adopted a hybrid on-line and in state approach to bring together 50 emerging young leaders, delegates, field experts, decision makers, and MPs from all across Australia.
FUSE was opened by author Boori Monty Pryor who delivered an Acknowledgement of Country. Following this, FUSE was officially launched by the Hon Alex Hawke, Minister for Immigration, Citizenship, Migrant Services and Multicultural Affair.
Facilitated by MYAN’s Youth Advisory Network (YAN), on Day 1 FUSE delegates had the opportunity to hear from a panel of experienced advocates from diverse backgrounds and sectors on the topics of First Nations’s Rights, Climate Change, Mental Health, and Racism. This was followed by a presentation from Mike Clay, Executive Producer of the current affairs and comedy show 'The Feed' on SBS TV, who shared important tips and insights on how to pitch good stories to the media.
Afterwards, the delegates participated in a skills building workshop to reflect on issues of concern for refugee and migrant young people in Australia, and prepare ‘pitches’ outlining issues and solutions on the key FUSE topics for the following day’s events.
FUSE Day 1 Speakers and YAN facilitators-
Panel 1: First Nations Rights
Panellists: Alicia Johnson
Boori Monty Pryor
Facilitator: Fatima (SA Youth Ambassador)
Panel 2: Climate Change
Panellists: Robati Harrison
Facilitator: Mary (QLD Youth Ambassador)
Panel 3: Mental Health
Panellists: Annukina Warda
Zinab Al Hilaly
Facilitator: Chanceline (SA Youth Ambassador)
FUSE Day 2 FUSE 2021 Day 2 on 5th December started with an informal networking session. Delegates had the opportunity to meet with an audience of key decision makers and government officials to present their pitches and talk about the issues and challenges affecting them, and proposed community-driven solutions.
Panellists included Anne Hollonds; the National Children’s Commissioner, The Hon Amanda Rishworth; Shadow Minister for Youth, Sheena Watt MP; Member of the Victorian Legislative Council, Morgan Koegel; Senior Campaigner Climate Council, Elsa Tuet Rosenberg; Co-founder and Director of Hue Consulting, Caterina Giorgi; CEO at the Foundation for Alcohol Research and Education (FARE) and the Hon Luke Howarth; Assistant Minister for Youth and Employment Services.
Find out more about FUSE 2021 on MYAN website and social media pages.
MYAN Data Snapshot- Youth Settlement 2020/21
MYAN has once again developed a national snapshot on the number of young people aged 12-24 who arrived in Australia via the Family, Skilled and Humanitarian program streams in the 2020/21 financial year. Using the latest data from the Department of Home Affairs, the snapshot includes information on a range of demographic data, including age, gender, religion, language and settlement location.
Key points from the snapshot include:
* The total number of youth arrivals during this period was 3,578 -a significant decrease from the 9,474 young people who arrived in 2019/20 and the 13,759 young people who arrived in the 2018/19.
• Young people arriving via the Family Stream comprised 79.5% of all youth arrivals, compared to those arriving through the Skilled Stream-17% and the Humanitarian Stream of just 3.5%
• 41.5% of all youth arrivals were of high-school age (12-17) • 61% of all youth arrivals identified as female
• The top 3 countries of birth for young people arriving under the: Family Stream-Afghanistan, Vietnam and Pakistan
• Skilled Stream-Philippines, Indian and China, and • Humanitarian Stream-Afghanistan, Venezuela and the Democratic Republic of Congo
• New South Wales and Victoria continued to settle the largest numbers of young people- 61% of young people from all the migration streams
The 2020-21 data highlights a significant decrease in the number of humanitarian arrivals into Australia compared to Family and Skilled visa holders, even though the quota for the Humanitarian Program was already reduced in the 2020-21 budget. Advice from the Australian Government is that program delivery was impacted due to the multiple challenges presented by the global COVID-19 pandemic, which meant the Humanitarian Program could not be delivered up to the ceiling.
Children will be able to receive vaccinations through GPs, state and territory-run clinics, pharmacies, Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Services and Commonwealth Vaccination Centres.
Bookings will be open on 15th December 2021 using the Vaccine Clinic Finder, with appointments available from 10th January 2022.
Share your story through your artwork and win prizes!
Australia is now one of the most highly vaccinated societies in the world, which gives us the strongest chance to live safely with COVID-19. So, why not tell the world why taking the COVID-19 vaccine has been important and win some prizes?
All you need to do is share your story of 'why COVID-19 vaccines are important' through your artwork- for example, a photograph, video, painting, or any format of your choice. The entries will be judged by the youth artists from MYAN, and the top 5 entries will win gift vouchers. Other entries will be showcased on MYAN’s website and social media pages.
To submit your artwork follow the steps below:
Step 1: Post your artwork on your social media page (Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn or Twitter)
This art competition is a part of MYAN's #whatsyourwhy campaign, an initiative meant to drive COVID-19 vaccine intake, protect the community and help members of the community to get back to all things we love in the way we love!
A state-wide multicultural youth consultation was held at the Moonah Arts Centre in Southern Tasmania on July 16, 2021. The event was coordinated by the Migrant Resource Centre, Tasmania’s Multicultural Youth program. The consultation brought together young people from migrant and refugee backgrounds living in northern and southern Tasmania.
It presented a unique and valuable opportunity for young people to discuss the key issues they face settling and living in Tasmania. A key objective of the consultation was to amplify the voices of multicultural youth. The participants provided recommendations that they wished to be shared with service providers, local and state governments.
To hear about what young people in Tasmania have to say about mental health, employment, discrimination (racism), transport and education and training, read the report here!
MYAN WA –Catalyst 2021
One of MYAN WA’s key events has been the Catalyst Youth Summit, biennial event that brings together young leaders from diverse culturally and linguistically diverse (CaLD) communities to talk about the issues and challenges affecting them and propose community-driven solutions to an audience of key decision makers and government officials.
Catalyst is a unique event, based on MYAN Australia’s FUSE National Multicultural Youth Summit that is developed and delivered by young people, for young people. In 2021, Catalyst was held at Curtin University, in partnership with the Centre for Human Rights Education.
The Catalyst Summit brought together 20 young people and 8 young leaders from CaLD communities to talk about the issues and challenges affecting them and propose community-driven solutions to an audience of key decision makers and government officials including the Minister for Youth, Dave Kelly, the Commissioner for Children and Young People, Colin Petit, the Director General of the Department of Communities, Mike Rowe, and representatives from the Office of Multicultural Interests, the Mental Health Commission, the WA Police Force and representatives from MYAN WA’s Executive Group.
This report outlines the topics from the day, with a specific focus on the challenges experienced by CaLD young people and the meaningful solutions they have proposed.
Farewell to Alex Long, the MYAN NSW CEO The CEO of Multicultural Youth Affairs NNetwork, Alex Long has decided to step down her role of leading MYAN NSW. Alex has had numerous achievements in the past six years. Among the many other achievements, Alex has helped MYAN amplify the voices of multicultural young people and improved their settlement experience through advocacy, influencing policy and modelling best practice, and shaped the Youth Ambassador program. She helped establish MYAN as the state-wide multicultural youth specialist organisation and agency of choice for Government and the sector.
We wish Alex all the best in her new endeavours.
Welcome Sandy McKiernan- The Chief Executive Officer at YACWA We are excited to announce that after six months as YACWA's (and MYAN WA's) Acting CEO, Sandy McKiernan has been permanently appointed as YACWA's Chief Executive Officer. Sandy has already achieved some major milestones, including the transition to a new organisational structure, inaugural Lotterywest Youth Sector Grants Scheme round, a successful re-tendering for The YEP Project and a partnership with WAAC and the establishment of Regional YACWA.
Training and Opportunities
Refugee scholarship program 2022
Susila Dharma Australia is committed to helping alleviate the barriers faced by refugees and asylum seekers in the pursuit of higher level education and career development. Susila Dharma Australia's Refugee Scholarship Program 2022 provides financial assistance to a person enrolled to study in a tertiary institution on a full time and face to face basis.
Benefits- $2500 stipend is paid in two installments in the academic year. The scholarship is initially for 1 year and may be extended for a maximum of 3 years.
The University of Newcastle’s Scholarship for Asylum Seekers Program
The University of Newcastle has launched a new scholarship program for asylum seekers. The Scholarship for Asylum Seekers Program (SASP) has a small number of places for Semester 1, 2022. The Scholarship offers full fee-waiver for the degree duration and a stipend of $4000 each year (or pro-rata for part-time students). The details of the program can be found here.
Call to join Youth CaLD Disability Collective (YCDC)
In 2020, MYAN co-hosted a national webinar with the National Ethnic Disability Alliance exploring the experiences and policy/service system gaps for young people with disabilities from CALD backgrounds. From this webinar, Grace and Cindy, who participated in this panel, wanted to continue the conversation with other young people. This led to the creation of the Youth CaLD Disability Collective (YCDC). Co-chaired by Grace and Cindy, the YCDC is a group of young people from across Australia who meet fortnightly over zoom to discuss, plan and implement upcoming projects and topics that affect their lives. And they are expanding!
The YCDC is looking for 2-3 CaLD young people with disabilities who can commit to 3 hrs a fortnight to join this group of passionate young people.
You can be a part of YCDC if:
• You are between 18-30 with lived experience of disability • You are from a Culturally and Linguistically Diverse (CaLD) background • You are interested in joining a lived experience led group of young people with disabilities from CaLD background who come together to explore and discuss the intersectionality of these spaces and how to create positive change in communities.
If you have any questions please email Martika the Youth Leadership Officer at: firstname.lastname@example.org
*This is a grassroots volunteer group, however there may be some paid opportunities along the way.
The Scanlon Foundation’s 2021 Mapping Social Cohesion Report
MYAN welcomes the recent release of The Scanlon Foundation’s 2021 Mapping Social Cohesion Report. This report provides vital insight into contemporary social cohesion and population issues. The report contains several key findings relating to how children and young people have been specifically impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic in areas including education, employment, and racism. Findings include:
• Those who did not thrive in the home schooling environment or who faced particular vulnerabilities dropped behind academically.
• Younger children were affected by reduced social contact
• Parents with low English proficiency and limited literacy experienced language barriers to assisting their children in the home schooling environment.
• A substantial number of young people did not successfully transition from school to further education, training or employment.
• Younger people—defined as 15–24-year old—made up a large share of those who are unemployed.
The report shows a dramatic 20% increase in people who believe that racism in Australia is big problem-from 40% in 2020 to 60% in 2021. These findings highlight the systemic racism and discrimination is still prevalent with far-reaching implications for all Australians, particularly young people from refugee and migrant backgrounds.
This demonstrates the need for a well-funded national anti-racism strategy, and to ensure all levels of government are actively promoting anti-racist attitudes and behaviours and supporting community based initiatives. MYAN will continue to work closely with the Australian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) in 2022 on the drafting of a national anti-racism framework.
A survey of 20,207 young people in Australia aged 15 to 19 years have revealed their greatest issues in 2021 relate to COVID-19, the environment, equity and discrimination, mental health, education and job prospects in Mission Australia’s new youth survey report 2021. A total of 3,008 (15.1%) respondents stated they were born overseas and 3,984 (20.1%) young people reported speaking a language other than English at home.
COVID-19 (45.7%), the environment (38.0%) and equity and discrimination (35.4%) topped the key issues in 2021 that young people feel Australia must address.
Enhanced Support for Refugee Settlement and Integration
On 17th December 2021, the Australian Government announced a $37.3 million investment in new measures to drive better settlement and integration outcomes for refugees and humanitarian entrants in Australia. The new settlement measures which focus on creating opportunities for more Australians to directly support successful refugee settlement in Australia, include:
• A new Community Refugee Integration and Settlement Pilot (CRISP)
• Social Enterprise Grants to support Refugee employment
• Improved Refugee and Humanitarian Entrant data tracking and analysis
MYAN welcomes this initiative to improve settlement outcomes of the refugee and humanitarian entrants.