The ‘Ask Maria Project,’ initiated by Women’s Legal Service (SA): WLSSA, was delivered to women of Culturally and Linguistically Diverse (CALD) backgrounds in regional South Australia. The project is one of eight operating under the initiative ‘Safer Pathways for CALD Women’ established by Australia’s National Research Organisation for Women’s Safety (ANROWS) and Action Research Support. The initiative aims to create safer pathways for women and their children, who are experiencing or at risk of family and domestic violence (DV).
Four women’s legal sessions were held in August 2018 at Bordertown Migrant Resource Centre (MRC), Mount Gambier MRC, Murraylands MRC and Naracoorte MRC, to collate women’s concerns and better understand their needs. These sessions also empowered migrant and refugee women from a diversity of backgrounds (Afghan, Asian, African and Burmese) with knowledge on women’s rights and the Australian legal system, and how to access support services. As an outcome of this project, an online interactive resource will be developed for women and their children in four regional locations in South Australia including the Limestone Coast.
Key partners of the project included the Australian Migrant Resource Centre (AMRC); regional MRCs; Multicultural Aged Care; regional domestic violence services; local councils; South Australia Police (SAPOL); rural and remote health services; drug and alcohol services; Centacare; Migrant Women’s Lobby Group; Red Cross; Yarredi Services; Yarrow Place Rape and Sexual Assault Service; Victim Support Service (SA); Survivors of Torture and Trauma Assistance and Rehabilitation Service (STTARS); Migrant Women’s Support Group; and Relationships Australia, South Australia (RASA).