The Australian Government and the Football Federation Australia (FFA) have teamed up to help young new arrivals settle into Australian life, Assistant Minister for Social Services and Multicultural Affairs, Zed Seselja announced today.
Speaking before the World Cup qualifying match between the Socceroos and Syria in Sydney today, Assistant Minister Seselja said the Government had allocated $100,000 to support the establishment of the FFA Multicultural Settlement Program.
“The program will help migrant families feel more connected to the broader community and less isolated.” Assistant Minister Seselja said.
FFA will establish a multicultural unit to enable it to better engage with newly arrived migrants and multicultural communities.
As part of the program, FFA will increase participation of new arrivals, aged between 5 and 11, in organised football activities.
“Football is a common interest for many newly arrived migrants and multicultural communities.
“The ‘world game’ represents an opportunity for people of many cultural and diverse backgrounds to come together.
“Taking part in football will enable these families to connect with other migrants and the mainstream community.
“It will provide a safe and welcoming space for boys and girls of all abilities to play modified football games – delivering a fun, engaging, and structured football experience.”
Assistant Minister Seselja said the program would also enhance the children’s physical and mental health through sports activities and weekly physical activity and enable them to make friends and build links with mentors.
“Our partnership with the FFA is part of our support for humanitarian entrants and migrants in participating equitably in Australian society,” he said.
“I am delighted that the Government and FFA can work together to make a real difference in the lives of children and their families who have moved to Australia to build a new life.”
For more information on how the Australian Government supports migrants and refugees visit the Department of Social Services website, the DSS Media Hub page and the Government support page. You can also view inspiring stories from refugees on their journey of settling in Australia from the Department of Social Services website.
FOR ALL MEDIA ENQUIRIES PLEASE CONTACT ANGELA MCGUINNESS ON 0427 839 164 OR (02) 6247 6444