35 things you can do right now to help refugees

At a time where we can despair at the cruelty of the Turnbull Government in its treatment of refugees, the good news is you can actually help make things better.

By Kon Karapanagiotidis, Founder of the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre

You are powerful when you unleash your compassion, passion and talent to create welcome and safety for refugees. The darker it becomes the more important it becomes that our shared humanity burns even brighter as a beacon of hope.

Together we are this incredible ecosystem of justice and kindness when we participate, donate and advocate to support refugees. There is a volunteer role for everyone reading this. A good heart, a sincere desire to help refugees and being reliable are the most important things. Trust me that you will gain more from the experience of helping refugees than the help you give. You will have the incredible honour of meeting some of the most courageous, resilient and generous souls you will ever come across.

Start anywhere, whether it’s being able to volunteer on a weekly basis or do a one-off event in support of refugees, signing a petition or just getting informed. Just take that first step and stand up for your values and for our wonderful Multicultural Australia.

Below are lots of hands-on practical ways, across Australia where you can help refugees.

  1. Become a Regular Donor to the ASRC to provide home, hope and welcome to refugees
  2. Get free training on how you can change attitudes to refugees in your community
  3. Based in Melbourne? Volunteer to help refugees at the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre (ASRC)
  4. Based in Brisbane and want to volunteer locally, check out BRASS Network
  5. Based in Adelaide and want to help refugees locally? Get involved in the Welcome Centre
  6. Based in Perth and want to help refugees locally? Get involved in the First Home Project and CARAD
  7. Based in Hobart & want to help refugees locally? Volunteer for the Southern Tasmania Migrant Resource Centre
  8. Check out our FAQs section to find out what’s happening to refugees in detention.
  9. Host a welcome dinner for refugees in your home through The Welcome Dinner Project
  10. Under 30? Join the ASRC Youth Action Project to help young people
  11. Are you a mum passionate about refugees? Join Mums4Refugees
  12. Are you a Christian seeking compassion for refugees? Join Love Makes A Way
  13. Help people in detention stay connected with families, loved ones, legal representation and the outside world by signing a petition to block Dutton’s latest push to confiscate people’s mobile phones.
  14. Live in a regional or rural area of Australia? Join RAR
  15. Are you a Grandmother passionate about the rights of refugee children?
  16. Send an email to Senator Anne Ruston urging her to include all people seeking asylum and refugees in COVID19 safety nets so they can survive the crisis.
  17. Create employment for #refugees in Melbourne for example by using ASRC Catering and the ASRC Cleaning social enterprises
  18. Volunteer to teach English and provide support to Sudanese refugees
  19. Call Acting Minister for Immigration Alan Tudge today to ask him to release people seeking asylum from detention so they can be safe.
  20. Mentor refugees to succeed in the hospitality industry by volunteering for SCARF
  21. Be creative by doing your own fundraiser for refugees, anything from a trivia night, BBQ, party, garage sale to a music night
  22. Are you a lawyer based in Sydney? Volunteer your time to help RACS
  23. Are you a teacher based in Melbourne that would love your students to learn about refugees? Contact ASRC Schools Program
  24. Be part of the next generation of leaders with lived experience of seeking asylum by taking part in the Community, Advocacy and Power Program 2020.
  25. Mentor Young Refugees in Melbourne, get involved with CMY
  26. Get informed. Know the facts. Check out Refugee Council of Australia website
  27. Become a food sponsor to provide vital food security for refugees
  28. Volunteer for RISE in Melbourne to support refugees
  29. Live in Wollongong? Get involved with Strategic Community Assistance to Refugee Families (or phone 02 4224 8646)
  30. A migration agent or lawyer in Brisbane? Use those skills to help RAILS
  31. Based in Townsville in Queensland? Volunteer for the Townsville Multicultural Support Group to help refugees settle in the local community
  32. Join the RightTrack movement, a community-led grassroots movement of people focused on refugee justice.
  33. Help create a place of welcome & support for refugees in Brisbane by volunteering for the Romero Centre
  34. Help refugees build a career in fashion by using your creative skills to volunteer for The Social Studio
  35. Volunteer with the Refugee Council of Australia in their Sydney and Melbourne offices


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