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Message from the SCoA Chair

Hello and welcome to SCoA’s December Newsletter.

First of all, I would like to wish all of our members, newsletter subscribers, friends and colleagues all the very best for the festive season and a successful and happy 2018. On behalf of the Board I would like to thank you all for your support over the past 12 months and I look forward to an exciting year ahead.

Since our last newsletter, the team at SCoA has been busy organising our signature annual event, a settlement symposium and annual general meeting. We hosted the event in Canberra at the National Museum of Australia and were delighted that over 80 representatives of the settlement sector, government, academia and interested parties joined us for a productive and insightful event. We were pleased to invite some unique and interesting speakers to the event and hope those who attended found their presentations useful.

Also in recent months our team has been busy representing the settlement sector at a range of meetings and conferences. You will find more detail on these in the “What’s Happening at SCOA” diary, but a few key highlights included:

  • The Advancing Community Cohesion conference at Western Sydney University which, over 3 days, discussed and investigated themes of social cohesion and engagement with an array of insightful speakers. Our CEO, Nick, presented on the role of settlement in promoting social cohesion.
  • The MYAN National Conference took place in Melbourne and we were delighted to be sponsors of the event and to play an official “note-taker” role. More importantly, Monica and Jamila who attended on behalf of SCOA found it enormously relevant and useful to their work.
  • The DSS consultation on the Settlement Grants Program wrapped up earlier this month, with SCOA attending roundtables and putting in a written submission. We will share this with you as soon as possible, and will of course keep a close eye on any developments.
  • The DIBP hosted a roundtable on the 2018-19 Migration Program which SCOA was pleased to attend in Sydney. At the meeting, we raised the need for a more holistic approach to settlement across all migration streams and we hope to further engage with DIBP on this issue.

We have also taken part in a number of other crucial government and key stakeholder engagement opportunities in the past two months and hope to be able to share more of those with you in coming months.

We welcomed the release earlier this month of the report of the Joint Parliamentary Inquiry into Migrant Settlement Outcomes. We were actively engaged in this Inquiry and were pleased to see SCOA’s submissions and recommendations given appropriate consideration in the final report.

Finally, a word on this newsletter. What better time of year for all of us to think about our health and well-being? As we come close to the end of the mad rush to Christmas and the usual holiday shutdown it is easy to get caught up in frantic happenings and not take a moment to think about what is important: our health, and that of our family and friends.

We chose our December newsletter as a focus on health and well-being for Australia’s newest arrivals and hope you will take some time to think about the unique issues that impact them. Most importantly, I am delighted to share a carefully curated collection of innovations, success stories and key services delivered across the sector that are designed to improve health and well-being.

I hope that you enjoy this edition of Settlement News and invite you to contact our national office on 02 6282 8515 if you have any comments, suggestions or questions.

Kind regards

Dewani Bakkum,

SCoA Chairperson