Support for Parishes & Schools

WACMRO is vested in ensuring that parishes and schools have the tools and resources that they need to foster welcoming environments and create an inclusive community for displaced persons from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds. Parish and school communities can get involved by working together with WACMRO on one of our projects or programs, enquire today to get started.

Contact WACMRO if your parish or school would like to participate in any of our programs or projects

Creating a Welcoming Parish

This is a social and cultural inclusion plan. It promotes integral human development and faith formation which supports a parish in welcoming displaced persons, from culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) backgrounds, into the parish and community.

Creating a Welcoming Parish supports Parish leadership to create:

  • A welcoming culture that is culturally safe and informed by servant leadership
  • Strategic pastoral plans that invite, include, and foster participation of migrant and refugee persons, especially from marginalised, minority groups
  • Faith learning, personal training and outreach opportunities for volunteers working with the newly arrived CALD person

Creating Welcoming Parish Communities is the resource which informs this improvement plan.

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Draw Near Project

This Project enables parish and school outreach to newly arrived displaced people from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds using a Head-Heart-Hands model to provide opportunities for integral human development and faith formation. It has three interlocking components

Social Reality Discussion

Facts and myths around refugees and asylees are examined in the light of Catholic Social Teaching principles. Government information is used to identify the refugee person or asylee locally and their current situation is discussed.

Faith Reflection

Gospel passages are reflected upon to share the Church’s understanding of who Jesus is and his teachings about how God would like us to treat each other, especially the vulnerable person.

Neighbour Love Activity

This outreach activity is data-informed and SMART – specific, measurable, achievable, time-bound (4 weeks). The parish and school partner to collect food and hygiene packs for distribution to displaced persons in need in the postcode.

Refugee Bursary

The Catholic School Refugee Bursary creates an intentional space in the school community for the provision of education for a vulnerable person from a refugee background who would benefit from attending a Catholic school.

It is set up and funded by the school and extended to the student for the duration of their education at the school.

WACMRO works with School Leadership to:

  • Ensure the student and family are set up for a successful experience of mainstream education in a Catholic education setting
  • Raise awareness of the facts and myths around refugees
  • Create a trauma-informed approach to welcoming the refugee child

Modern Slavery Project

Many victims of modern slavery in Australia are migrants and refugees who are unaware of their work rights. The Modern Slavery Project empowers the parish and school community to mitigate the risk of modern slavery from the supply chains used to purchase goods and services.

The project offers practical solutions that can be adopted by the school and parish as a way of assisting society to combat this evil which Pope Francis has described as a ‘crime against humanity’.

Purchasing ‘slave-free’ goods and services also positively impacts supply chains that extend overseas, helping some 30 million people in our region.

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Catholic Community Refugee Sponsorship Program

This Program is in partnership with Community Refugee Sponsorship Australia (CRSA). The Program enables a parish-school community to financially sponsor a refugee family from a refugee camp for settlement in Australia.

The refugee family is documented by the UNHRC and vetted by the Australian Government prior to grant of a permanent residency visa. The Program is based on the highly successful Canadian model and is supported by Federal Government.

Neighbours 4 Newcomers

This program provides training and practical support to a volunteer group to offer local support to humanitarian entrant families (refugees) tailored to their individual needs and circumstances.

The Program requires a volunteer group from the parish-school community to assist the family for 12 months. This can include:

  • Homework support
  • Material aid
  • Spiritual support if requested
  • Group activities eg: picnics, visits to National Parks
  • English language practice
  • Financial support for food, clothes and utility bills
  • Referrals to support services
  • Links to local community groups
  • Links to support services for families

Catholic Migrant Community Forum

Australia is a multicultural, pluralist society with a strong separation between the church and the state. This is not the norm in many countries. WACMRO can assist Catholic migrant communities with social cohesion issues by providing opportunities for a community to hold important conversations in a safe environment.

Refugee Group Rapid Response

Sometimes a group of newly arrived persons must wait before being granted legal status as Humanitarian Entrants (refugees). These asylees are very vulnerable during this wait time.

WACMRO and its partners can assist this group with food vouchers, clothes vouchers, schooling and student stationary, access to Conversation English classes and limited interim medical support.

We acknowledge the Traditional Owners of Country throughout Australia and recognise their continuing connection to land, waters and community. We pay our respect to them and their cultures and to Elders past and present.

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