AN upcoming Wagga forum will give residents from refugee backgrounds living in rural areas the chance to contribute to better engagement with health services.
Participants will hear from guest speakers, including community researchers involved in a new research project, and local GP Dr Geraldine Duncan, who has extensive experience providing health and social care to refugee-background people living in Wagga.
Another key speaker is Mr Felix Machiridza, the lead functional family therapist at Riverina Medical and Dental Aboriginal Corporation.
The speakers will share their insights and launch the new project exploring community perspectives on health and wellbeing for people from refugee backgrounds living in rural areas.
Professor Deborah Warr, senior principal research fellow at Three Rivers University Department of Rural Health, said: "For some time now, many people from refugee backgrounds have been resettling in Wagga Wagga and other regional towns across Australia and this enriches our rural communities".
"The legacy of past experiences and the challenges of resettlement, however, continues to impact on people's health and wellbeing," Ms Warr said.
"This includes experiences leading up to enforced migration and post-settlement challenges of learning a new language, securing housing and employment, cultural isolation, and navigating unfamiliar and complex social and health service systems.
"I encourage anyone interested in this important social issue to come along and join the conversation."
Participants will also learn about available resources for working with people with refugee-background, and enjoy some morning tea.
The community event will be hosted by CSU Three Rivers UDHR and project partners, including the Multicultural Council of Wagga, Murrumbidgee PHN and the University of Notre Dame.
This free event runs from 10am to 12.30pm on Friday, May 17 at Gallery 43, Wagga TAFE on the corner of Macleay and Coleman Streets.
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