The My New Neighbour campaign hit the streets just three months ago and the wins are coming in thick and fast. To date, 10 councils have stood with refugees passing unanimous motions in support of community sponsorship.
Activists have led the way making sure that these councils have listened to their concerns and that their community leaders are standing with them in championing this neighbourhood solution to the growing global refugee crisis.
These wins are significant and should be celebrated, they pave the way for us to foster the spirit of welcome across Australia. But the work does not stop with these councils. It’s important that we continue to bring our communities with us on the journey. It’s important that we continue to encourage our local sporting groups, schools, universities and local business to add their voices to the call for an expanded and improved community sponsorship program.
So what else has been happening?
The Western Bulldogs have added their support to the campaign by calling for more community-led programs like community sponsorship. This extends on from their great work in helping to resettle refugees in the western suburbs of Melbourne. Check out this great video about their resettlement work and community sponsorship.
Activists working on My New Neighbour know that milestones like Refugee week are a great opportunity to do some much needed wider community engagement in their campaigning. Amnesty activist groups hosted more than 20 events around Refugee week and help get their communities involved in welcoming refugees to Australia. Congratulations and thank you for all your hard work!!
The Maroochydore Group in QLD hosted a screening of ‘Human Flow’ and Ai WeiWei re-tweeted a picture from there event to his 372k online followers opening a massive audience the campaign.
The WA Refugee network who have developed relationships with those with a lived experience of being a refugee and making Australia home showcased their stories through a poster series exhibited in 5 libraries across Perth.
Post refugee week it’s important that we keep up the pressure. There are small things all of us can do to champion or lead the spirit of welcome in our communities. Ask a local business if they will display a poster, collect some actions on the petition or even write a letter to your mayor. All of the things you need to take it to the streets can be found by clicking the button below.