About the Campaign 

Give Hope is an initiative of the Social Justice Forum on behalf of Synod and our partners.

This grew from rising church and community concern about how people seeking asylum are being treated in Australia and in offshore detention and the plight of refugees worldwide. 

The campaign advocates for a more compassionate, respectful and humanitarian response to these people and aims to raise awareness about their situation and help give practical support for those living in the NSW/ACT community.

As this global humanitarian crisis forces millions from their homes, we’re urging the Australian government to increase our humanitarian intake, help resettle offshore detainees in Australia and establish a new regional protection framework.

As a global citizen and signatory to the 1951 UN Refugee Convention, Australia has a responsibility to give protection to people who desperately need shelter. We need YOU to show our leaders the groundswell of support for lending a hand. See below how you can TAKE ACTION.

Deputy Premier, John Barilaro, and speakers at the 2017 Tafe Campaign Celebration, Nov 2017

Jon from Give Hope presenting a Community Action Workshop at Roseville Uniting Church, Nov 2017

Alex from Give Hope handing over $8k worth of vouchers to staff at Settlement Services International, following the 2016 Give Hope Winter Voucher Appeal

The Social Justice Forum team marching in the Palm Sunday Rally for refugees, April 2017

More people are on the move than ever before.

War, terror and poverty have created an unprecedented global humanitarian crisis of 65.6 million forcibly displaced people -20 people every minute.

According to UNHCR each day over 28,000 people are forced to flee their homes to escape violence and persecution. Among those forcibly displaced are 22.5 million refugees, searching for safety and seeking asylum. 

These are ordinary people - forced to take great risk and show extraordinary courage to survive unimaginable terrors,  leaving their homeland to build a new life for themselves and their families. These people have much to offer our community, if we allow them to “call Australia home”.

Every human has the legal and moral right to seek safety and asylum - regardless of origin, race, language or religion. In the face of the current humanitarian crisis, a global response is needed to protect and uphold these rights.

So, what's been Australia's response

The Give Hope campaign is one way of responding to this crisis. We work within the Uniting Church and the wider Australian community to advocate for change - for better laws and policies to help people live and flourish, with a chance to make their own luck in our Lucky Country.

Manus Island:       

The situation on Manus Island has been at crisis point for some time now. Over 600 men still remain on the Island, traumatised by what they have witnessed and fearful of violence outside the walls of the new centre. Many are still suffering from chronic illnesses and mental health problems and are not being given proper medical support. We must continue to put pressure on the Australian Government to act compassionately, evacuate the camp and bring them to safety before more lives are lost. We're asking you to make contact with our political leaders to express your concern and demand that this cruelty ends.

Prime Minister, Malcolm Turnbull : 02 6277 7700 , Minister for Immigration & Border Protection, Peter Dutton: 02 6277 7860, Opposition Leader, Bill Shorten: 02 6277 4022 Deputy Opposition Leader, Tanya Plibersek: 02 6277 4404 

For more information on the current situation contact Alex Hogan at the SJF Team: ahogan@uniting.org 

#LetThemStay  

In 2016 we campaigned to stop our Government forcing a group of people seeking asylum back to the hell of offshore detention. We called on our leaders to #LetThemStay - and with your help, we won. Now the Government has told this same group that they are at risk of losing all financial support and housing - a deliberate attempt to make life so unbearable that they have no choice but to return to danger. This decision could see hundreds of vulnerable people - including children and female victims of sexual assault -  thrown on the streets, without money or a place to live. How you can help:

- Provide immediate material aid for those in NSW/ACT who are directly affected. You can do this by sending gift cards from major supermarkets, department stores and pharmacies to the Give Hope Team. We’ll bundle these up and pass them on to the Asylum Seeker Centre in Newtown (ASC). The ASC team is on the ground working to support those in NSW/ACT who are part of the #LetThemStay group. Vouchers can be sent to: Give Hope Team, PO BOX 7137 Silverwater NSW 2128. Or you may prefer to make a donation to one of the major organisations working to help this group of people. CLICK HERE for info on where to donate. 

-Email Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, and Minister for Immigration and Border Protection Peter Dutton to demand a better way! We’ve made it easy for you to express your concern about the recent decisions. It’s important that we show the community's widespread concern. Simply follow this link, edit the message text as you wish, and send: https://socialjusticeforum.good.do/letthemstay/letthemstay/

-Meet with your local Federal MP to show that, as a constituent, you don’t support this decision! Meeting with your local Federal Member of Parliament is an ideal way of showing them that, as a constituent, you won’t support your government treating innocent people and children this way. Contact us for any support you need to organise a meeting, prepare and follow up.

A few other ways to get involved in the Give Hope Campaign:

A Community Action Workshop in your congregation or community 

We've teamed up with the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre for their #RightTrack Campaign to help change the conversation about refugees and people seeking asylum and create a more compassionate response. This is a 4hr program delivered by Give Hope and the ASRC for those who already support these people in need - but who want to learn more about how to change the current situation. Please contact Alex Hogan at Give Hope to discuss holding a workshop - ahogan@uniting.org / 02 9407 3230

Provide Practical Support:       

Each year we run voucher appeals to provide essential practical help to refugees and people seeking asylum in the community. We invite members of the church and general public to take part by purchasing a gift card or voucher for a supermarket, department store, pharmacy, sports store or cinema, and send them to us. It's up to you how much each voucher is worth. We then hand over all the vouchers to the team at Settlement Services International. They're working on the ground with people seeking asylum in the community. To get involved, simply send them via post to: Give Hope Team, PO Box 7137 Silverwater NSW 2128. 

Contact your local MP:

Getting in contact with your Federal MP is a great way to show them that their constituents are passionate about this issue and want change. We’ve made it super easy for you to do this – simply click the link, enter your address and either send the pre-filled message or add new words of your own. This is your chance to tell our leaders that WE CAN DO BETTER for refugees and people seeking asylum – make it count!

Click here

#WeCanDoBetter symbolic action:

Taking part in this symbolic action is a powerful way to say We Can Do Better for people seeking asylum. This is a great activity to get your family, friends, colleagues and church community involved in - the more the better! Just print out the sign (make enough copies for everyone), take a picture of your group holding the signs and, on the flip-side, write a message to your local MP in the space provided. This should be a message from the heart, telling your MP why you think we can do better for refugees and people seeking asylum. Be sure to sign off with your name, then send these in the mail to your local MP's office. We'd also love you to share the picture of your group with us - please email it to socialjustice@uniting.org. Download a copy of the sign from the 'Resources' tab below. 

Follow us on Facebook & Twitter for live campaign updates, pictures and action alerts

For resources and more background information please go to our resources page