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Community Sponsorship of Refugees

 

Community Refugee Sponsorship Australia- CSRA

 

January 2022

New program commencing July 2022

In December, the federal government announced two important new measures that herald a new era for community sponsorship of refugees in Australia. 

  • New four-year ‘Community Refugee Integration and Support Pilot’ (CRISP): CRISP will enable Australian community groups to take primary responsibility for welcoming and settling 1,500 UNCHR-referred refugees over a four-year period, beginning in July 2022. Refugees involved in this program will be able to access Centrelink support and Medicare benefits on a par with other resettled refugees, with the role of community members likely to be focussed on providing welcome, practical support and some basic ‘on arrival’ needs like temporary housing, furniture and household goods and other material needs.  More information can be found in on the CRSA website here. 
  • Current CSP program will become more affordable: From July 2022 the visa application charge associated with the current Community Support Program will be significantly reduced.  This will make it more affordable for Australians to sponsor the visa of a refugee who is already known to them (e.g. a family member or friend).  

While these programs won't expand the size of Australia's humanitarian migration quota in the short term, this remains an important goal to achieve in future years, building on these new foundations.

Thank you to the church groups and individual Australians across the country who rallied to help trail-blaze this new approach by signing up to be a part of the Group Mentorship Program for newly arrived refugees (most, but not all, being Afghan evacuees). Mentor groups are providing much needed welcome, orientation, friendship and practical support, supplementing the role of government-funded settlement services. 

Groups have hosted dozens of welcome picnics and other events in communities around Australia and provided families with donated laptops, phones, scooters, toys and household goods to help fill gaps.  

Mentor groups are helping evacuees inspect and secure suitable housing in a very challenging housing market (with some successfully negotiating significant discounts with landlords), sort out hiccups with the registration of families with Medicare and Centrelink, provide advice on employment and educational opportunities and advise on the steps that people need to take to have overseas qualifications recognised here.  

For more information about joining with the groups involved in a new era of refugee protection in Australia, contact Community Refugee Sponsorship Australia (CRSA). 

 


 

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Telephone: (02) 9299 2215

Address: Locked Bag Q199,

QVB NSW 1230

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