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Welcome The Asylum Seeker Parish Support
"Refugees are not a number nor a problem but are persons, each of whom is precious, each of whom has a story, each of whom makes a claim on us as fellow human beings," writes Fr Andrew Hamilton SJ. "In Australia some refugees have been accepted in Australia from refugee camps. Others are not recognised as refugees. Some are found in detention centres; others live in the community, relying on charity for themselves and their families. Some still live on Manus Island and on Nauru."
“Our response to the challenges posed by contemporary migration can be summed up in four verbs: welcome, protect, promote and integrate,” states Pope Francis in his Message for the 105th World Day of Migrants and Refugees, celebrated on Sunday 25 August 2019. This takes place during Migrant and Refugee Week, marked by the Catholic Church in Australia from 19 - 25 August. The Australian Catholic Migrant and Refugee Office has released a comprehensive resource kit for Migrant and Refugee Week.
Last month we celebrated Refugee Week Week (16-22 June), which is Australia’s peak annual activity to raise awareness about the issues affecting refugees and to celebrate the positive contributions made by refugees to Australian society. The Refugee Council of Australia is the peak national body representing over 200 organisations who support refugees and people seeking asylum and coordinates Refugee Week across Australia. Read a reflection by Fr Andrew Hamilton SJ marking Refugee Week, here.
Cabrini provides medical care to asylum seekers and refugees attending their Asylum Seeker and Refugee Health Hub. Located on the ground floor at 503 Sydney road, Brunswick, it is open Monday to Friday, 9am - 5pm. It is co-located with Lentara Asylum Seeker Project There is limited free parking on-site as well as limited metered and un-metered street parking on Sydney Road and Blyth Street. For enquiries and bookings, call (03) 8388 7874.
"The reality is that no one is observing the situation in Manus and Nauru, no one considers our fate, no one is waiting to see when we are freed, no one is looking to see where we will be settled," writes Journalist and refugee in Manus, Behrouz Boochani, in this article in The Guardian on 2 July. Behrouz Boochani analyses the reason for the “Stop the Boats” policy in operation for the past six years and supported, for various reasons, by both major political parties. Human rights doesn’t feature in this policy nor is there any genuine attempt to contribute positively to the Refugee crisis in our world.
Catholic Social Services Victoria, on behalf of member agencies supporting asylum seekers and refugees, has written to the Prime Minister, Scott Morrison MP and the Leader of the Opposition, Anthony Albanese MP seeking their agreement to end the rancour and reach a just and compassionate agreement for the treatment of asylum seekers and refugees.
In the wake of the Federal election, CEO and Founder of the 
Asylum Seeker Resource Centre (ASRC), Kon Karapanagiotidis OAM, has written a letter to supporters indicating the need for increased advocacy and support for refugees and those seeking asylum.
The Catholic Alliance for People Seeking Asylum has released a federal election statement that calls for all sides of politics to commit to “language and policies that reflect a compassionate and humane Australian society”.
 
Sr Brigid Arthur csb and the dedicated team of volunteers at Brigidine Asylum Seekers Project 
(BASP) are confronted regularly by asylum seekers and refugees and their families who come to them desperate for help since the government cuts to the SRSS allowance. BASP, along with other non-government organisations, has been trying to raise funds in order to provide for the unprecedented demand for help being made upon them.
The Catholic Alliance for People Seeking Asylum's National Week of Prayer and Action 2019 is fast approaching. This year it coincides with Refugee Week, which is the 16 – 23 June 2019 and it will be during the first 100 days of a newly elected government (so it's a crucial time to send a strong message for compassion to our leaders from across the Catholic community!) Register yourself, your school, parish, network or organisation today! 

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