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Refugee Mentoring Program
The Refugee Mentoring Program is a part of Calvary’s Community Benefits program.
A pilot was conducted in 2007-2008 and the program was launched in June 2008 for future implementation.
The Community Benefit Program provides funding each year for specific projects aimed at serving the disadvantaged and marginalised in the community. This includes assisting external organisations working with disadvantaged people to meet their goals.
The Refugee Mentoring Program is an opportunity for Calvary staff to become directly involved in sharing their skills and expertise, to become aware of disadvantage in a more tangible way and also to increase understanding of cultural differences.
Why a Refugee Mentoring Program?
The Refugee Mentoring Program aims to provide people with a refugee background and/or their children with the opportunity to gain some experience of an Australian workplace. The intention is to assist them gain a clearer idea of the career direction they might wish to pursue and what study might be necessary to achieve this.
It is also seen as a way of enhancing the participant’s self esteem, assisting participation in the community and fostering networks towards enabling effective and satisfying engagement within the Australian social and cultural context. You can view our brochure here.
How does the program work?
The Refugee Mentoring Program is implemented under the direction of the Program Coordinator who has responsibility for the day-to-day running of all aspects of the program. Oversight for the project is provided by representatives of the local refugee support network who meet quarterly to offer guidance and consultation to the project.
Calvary staff volunteer to become mentors. They participate in Cultural Awareness and Mentor Training to prepare them for their role. They liaise regularly with the Program Coordinator during the conduct of their role.
Most work areas of the hospital have at least one trained mentor so that a wide range of work experiences are available to participants. Placements have been conducted in administrative areas such as Human Resources, Organisational Development as well as clinical areas, pharmacy and IT. Placements are designed to be flexible and are planned around the needs and availability of the participants. They may be scheduled as a full time placement across a series of consecutive weeks or as a number of hours per day or week across a more extended period.
The placement may be focused in one particular work area or include a range of different work areas if the participants desires a variety of experiences. Participants complete an induction process which includes Career counselling to establish their goals and desired outcomes from the work placement.
How do I get involved?
Calvary seeks Expressions of Interest from the local refugee support network for participants in the program. Suggested participants will complete an application process with the support of their support agency. There is no cost to agencies or participants. All participants must be sponsored by an appropriate agency, such as Companion House, MARSS, CIT, CRS etc, and have a designated liaison person within that agency with whom the Project Coordinator can keep in contact. The sponsor supports the participant for the duration of their program. Interested participants and sponsors can make an appointment with the Coordinator. You can download the application form and required police check forms before your appointment
Alternatively, if you wish to refer someone to the program you can make contact directly with the Program Coordinator, Rachel Davies on 6201 6369 or mobile0467 789 682 . You may also email to Rachel.email@example.com
Calvary Community Benefit Program is an integral aspect of our Catholic identity. The basis of this initiative is to witness to the founding inspiration of Catholic health facilities in Australia which began as community services. Community Benefit is a living and transparent way of keeping us aligned with our mission and demonstrating our stewardship of resources. It is an expression of our commitment to integrity and fidelity to mission, a mission to serve the poor and underserved without discrimination.
“Follow this link to a story that provides both a refugee and mentor perspective on Calvary’s Refugee Mentoring Program”