MCWH has produced a number of training guides for community organisations and individuals who work with immigrant and refugee women. They may also be of interest to health and other professionals.
Most of us don't think twice about visiting the doctor. It's just another appointment in our busy lives. But imagine having to ask questions like: What is health? Where do I go? What do I say? How do I pay?
The Women's Health Map is an innovative manual for community workers supporting immigrant and refugee women to navigate our health system. It is especially useful when working with newly-arrived women and encourages community workers to see the Australian health system through new eyes.
Women's lives are marked by constant change, and for immigrant and refugee women, their arrival in Australia is also a departure point for a new phase in their lives.
Our Points of Departure Project (POD) ran from 2009 - 2011 for NGOs and individuals to build knowledge and capacity to advocate on key health issues affecting immigrant and refugee women. The Points of Departure Advocacy Toolkit is a useful guide for all immigrant and refugee women or groups wanting to advocate on issues relevant to them.
Common Threads, Common Practice provides a concise, easy to use reference guide for best practice when working with immigrant and refugee women in sexual and reproductive health.
The best practice guide is informed by the Common Threads Research Report published in 2012 by MCWH, which is also available for download.
The MCWH diabetes prevention education manual is based on years of bilingual diabetes prevention education to immigrant and refugee women through our successful SEED Project. The manual has been designed to to assist other service providers in adopting a culturally appropriate model of health promotion with culturally diverse women on the topic of diabetes prevention.
For more information you can also download our SEED Project Reports below.
Our project reports make a significant contribution to the body of knowledge related to immigrant and refugee women's health and wellbeing, and effective strategies for education, health promotion and evaluation.
The On Her Own Report documents a sexual health promotion program MCWH ran in response to the high number of unplanned pregnancies and abortions experienced by female international students in Australia. The program (which took place in the City of Melbourne) aimed to build the capacity of these students to improve their health and wellbeing especially their sexual health.
This report outlines the main findings of the Participate, Advocate, Communicate, Engage (PACE) Leadership Project, including the outcomes of the PACE leadership training program for immigrant and refugee women. The report highlights some of the issues that have become apparent during the implementation of the project and puts forward recommendations in developing, implementing and evaluating empowerment and leadership programs for immigrant and refugee women.
The MCWH Understanding Sexuality Project responded to the recognition of the AGMC that immigrant and refugee communities could improve their understanding of and support for the issues facing their GLBTIQ members.
Coming out, coming home or inviting people in explores the impacts of cultural differences in supporting GBLTIQ individuals and documents the success of the project in building the capacity of bicultural workers to support same-sex attracted women in their communities, through informative and culturally relevant training and education.
Violence against women is a significant public health issue worldwide and can be prevented. However, the complexity of women's experiences of violence highlights the need for culturally appropriate strategies. Effective violence prevention efforts must address the specific and diverse situations of women from immigrant and refugee communities, within the cultural, religious and socio-economic contexts of their lives
Based on extensive research and consultation, On Her Way provides an overview of the various groups of immigrant and refugee women in Australia that should be involved in any violence prevention effort. The nature of violence perpetrated against these women, and the factors that may increase women's exposure to violence are also covered.
The Common Threads Report is the culmination of a national and cross-cultural research initiative to understand and articulate the issues, needs, values and experiences of immigrant and refugee women in relation to their sexual and reproductive health.
By focusing on the stories and experiences of women from four different cultural and linguistic groups (Chinese, Indian, Sudanese and Middle Eastern) alongside consultations with key health providers in the field, the Common Threads report is a compelling illustration of why definitions of health must incorporate the social determinants which affect wellbeing: factors such as gender, culture, language, and socio-economic situation.
The Bbkayi Report documents a study conducted by MCWH and commissioned by Whitehorse Community Health Service, tracing the enablers and barriers for Chinese women in the City of Whitehorse in accessing antenatal, maternal and parent support. The study found that family and Chinese cultural practices such as the 30 day confinement period play an important part during pregnancy and childrearing and influence how Chinese women access programs and services.
The report has implications for all immigrant and refugee pregnancy-related services and is a fantastic resource for anyone interested in improving the cultural relevance of health services.
Funded by the Tasmanian Department of Health and Human Services, and headed by Project Manager and author, Yabbo Thompson, this report provides an invaluable record of how the MCWH Points of Departure Toolkit can be effectively put into practice to support women from immigrant and refugee backgrounds in their own advocacy work.
MCWH was very proud of the role it played in this project, which built on our national Points of Departure Project. Thanks to Yabbo and the Tasmanian Government for allowing us to share the report.
In response to the growing prevalence of Type 2 diabetes in some overseas-born people resident in Australia, the Multicultural Centre for Women’s Health implemented the Diabetes Healthy Living Project. This innovative pilot project aimed to increase the capacity of immigrant and refugee women to make healthy lifestyle choices so to minimise their risk of developing Type 2 diabetes.
Through the project, Bilingual health educators delivered diabetes prevention education sessions to women in eight different languages: Amharic, Arabic, Italian, Macedonian, Sudanese Arabic, Tagalog, Turkish and Vietnamese. Read the full report to learn about the project findings and achievements.
Coronary heart disease is a major cause of death and disability in women. In Australia, heart disease kills more than 31 women every day. Evidence of the increasing incidence of heart disease amongst culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) communities has also been well documented.
Heart Foundation Victoria partnered with MCWH to develop and deliver heart health information to women from CALD communities. The project aim was to educate communities about the risk factors of heart disease and warning signs of heart attack. The project was funded by the Heart Foundation Engaging Women’s grant and could not have been possible without the endless enthusiasm and support of Catuscia Biuso, who also authored this report.