Volunteers, housing sought for Syrian and Iraqi refugees

Netty Horton (Melbourne Catholic)

CatholicCare in Victoria has put out an urgent call for volunteers as it seeks to rehouse Iraqi and Syrian refugee families from temporary accomodation to long-term housing. Source: Melbourne Catholic.

In an interview with Melbourne Catholic, CatholicCare’s chief Netty Horton explained that CatholicCare and St Vincent’s Health Australia had partnered to support Iraqi and Syrian refugees by housing them in self-contained units on the site of St Vincent’s Health Care Services in Eltham.

Known as the Eltham Project, the units provided much needed temporary emergency accommodation to dozens of refugee families and individuals, but this refugee housing project is due to conclude at the end of September this year.

At that time, the units will be used as affordable housing for seniors. Iraqi and Syrian refugees aged over 55 years who are currently living in the units as part of the Eltham Project will be staying on in their existing units. However, there are 18 other households who will now need to be transitioned into private accommodation.

With the deadline of September 15 looming, Ms Horton said there was an urgent need for up to 15 volunteers to help these refugee families look for, and transition into, longer term accommodation. 

She said the Eltham Project had captured the hearts and minds of individuals, community groups, schools and parishes, and CatholicCare has been inundated with offers of support, from furnishing units to donating goods, welcoming residents and volunteering.

As well as volunteers to support these 15 individual refugee families, CatholicCare is also keen to hear from anyone in the community who may have information on low-cost accommodation for medium to long term lease.


CatholicCare’s CEO puts out an urgent call for volunteers (Melbourne Catholic


‘This is my country’: how a Melbourne suburb defied the far-right to welcome refugees (The Guardian) 

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