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Manus Island Crisis

The situation for over 600 men on Manus Island is at crisis point. They have languished without food or water - in horrific conditions - for weeks now. They are too scared to leave the closed centre for fear of violence and, despite what we've been told, the new facilities are NOT finished and still under construction. 

This is a humanitarian emergency. Without help, these men will die. The Australian Government MUST act compassionately, evacuate the camp and bring them to safety before more lives are lost. 

"What can I do about it?"

We ask you to make contact with our political leaders to express your concern and demand that this cruelty ends. Contact details below:

Prime Minister, Malcolm Turnbull : 02 6277 7700

Foreign Affair Minister, Julie Bishop: 02 6277 7500

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.

But now these same people are at risk again! The Government has told them all financial support would be cut immediately and housing taken away - a deliberate attempt to make life so unbearable that they have no choice but to return to danger. 

This decision sees hundreds of vulnerable people - including children and female victims of sexual assault -  thrown on the streets, without money or a place to live. #WeCanDoBetter than this - we MUST do better!

Click on the TAKE ACTION tab below to see how you can help NOW! 

About the Campaign 

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

It grew from rising church and community concern about how refugees and people seeking asylum are being treated in Australia and in offshore detention.

The campaign seeks compassion and respect for these people, to raise awareness about their plight 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 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.

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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

Table Talk Group from the Yurora Festival 2017 taking part in our #WeCanDoBetter symbolic action

Stafford from Give Hope taking part in a public reading vigil of the Nauru Files at Sydney Town Hall

More people are on the move than ever before.

War and terror have created a global humanitarian crisis of 65 million forcibly displaced people. According to UNHCR, each day around 34,000 people are forced to flee their homes to escape violence and persecution. In 2015 alone, more than 300,000 refugees and migrants, mostly Syrian people seeking safety from a brutal civil war, fled to Europe.

Those who seek asylum are ordinary people - forced to take great risk and show extraordinary courage to survive unimaginable terrors and leave their homeland to find safety and 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.

#LetThemStay - 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 contact Mr Turnbull and Mr Dutton to express your concern about the recent decisions. It’s important that we our community's widespread disfavour. 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.

Get involved in the Give Hope Campaign 

By getting involved, you’re adding your voice to the call for change. A small commitment of time and energy can make a world of difference. There are lots of ways to take action:

NEW!! Hold 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 the Give Hope team runs 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. If you or your church want to donate vouchers to us outside one of our regular appeals, you're more than welcome! Simply send them visa 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. You can download a copy of the sign under 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