What do you get for $200 in 2017? A nice pair of shoes, a good meal at a fancy restaurant, or a camera?
At the Australian Refugee Association $200 gives a future to children who have had to leave their homes for many different reasons. There is a unique challenge for new arrivals who have to attend school, some come to Australia as the head of their household, burdened with the responsibility of adulthood, despite their young age. All of a sudden they are children again, dealing with all of the usual issues of a developing mind. The biggest difference is that they are trying to learn one of the most complicated languages in the world. Without a basis in English, try to imagine how difficult it would be to explain that there, they’re and their all sound exactly the same, but have vastly different meanings. Try explaining which witch is which.
In order to become a fully contributing member of the Australian community the vast majority of employers expect a high school education. Students need to be proficient in Geography, Maths, and Science; this can be overwhelming for natural citizens let alone new arrivals with very limited literacy and numeracy skills in their own language.
This problem was identified early by the Australian Refugee Association and for over 10 years they have been running homework clubs. These clubs assist high school students with their work. Staff and volunteers work tirelessly to assist refugees with their spoken and written English, to ensure that homework and assignments are completed on time. The Homework Clubs create a pathway for young people, filling the gap between the New Arrivals program and mainstream schooling.
Without these clubs many children would drop out of school. Isolation due to language and cultural barriers would make education alien and threatening. Over 100 kids take part in the homework clubs in metropolitan Adelaide. The clubs allow people from refugee backgrounds to complete Year 12, explore their futures in education or employment, learn social skills, become mentors and create connections with the wider community.
The program is funded mainly by government grants; however as the number of humanitarian refugee visas increases ARA must expand the number of homework clubs. Your donation means that we can continue to offer support and education to the newest members of our community, ensuring that no child slips through the cracks and is unable to receive the education they deserve, an education that will allow them to realise their dreams, to become future community leaders.
Your donation will create doctors, lawyers, mechanics, and plumbers. Your donation will create Australians.