Our government is introducing more and more regional visas as part of a national population plan, requesting migrants to prove themselves for 3 years before obtaining Permanent Residency.
The “culture of welcome” in regional areas is often very limited and there is hardly an acceptance of cultural change. Besides, they lack the presence of multicultural organisations and ethnic communities that could act as “anchors” for new arrivals.
Research by the Monash Migration and Inclusion Centre shows, besides isolation and racism, many additional challenges such as –
Employment: Many young people leave these areas because of a lack of job diversity at best or job availability at worst. No wonder that most migrants, particularly those on a skill-based visa, are rather underwhelmed by local job offerings. Besides, local employers might not be even willing to give a job to a well-skilled foreigner instead to a local with whom they are socially connected.
Housing, Health & Transport: Regional towns vary significantly in their levels of access and affordability. Most are already grappling with social challenges and may face a “double disadvantage” when migrants increase demand on existing services.
We intend to create a documentary by following a couple of new migrants in regional areas from the time of arrival in a regional area of Victoria to the end of their 3 year period, thereby documenting their experience and learning what works and what needs improvement.
Similar to Interracial Love, we will evaluate the progress of the migrants as well as the host community throughout the period and provide guidance and mentorship to both sides.
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