Thank you for supporting former refugees during 2020.

Sanctuary Australia FoundationBlog

Thank you so much for supporting Sanctuary through the challenging year that was 2020, and enabling us to continue to assist refugees both here and overseas. We are grateful for having assistance from both the Federal Government, organisations and individuals.

Girl using computer donated by Sanctuary
One of the fortunate recipients of a computer donated by Sanctuary.

Sanctuary’s Computer Aid Program has donated over $40,000 worth of recycled laptops in the last financial year, helping refugee students and their families to connect to Wi-Fi and providing Microsoft Office 2010 or Libre Office with donated machines. With generous laptop donations from business, schools, colleges, organisations, and individuals we have made a real difference to students ability to stay connected with their teachers and online learning resources. Thank you to Atlassian and Collier’s Charitable Fund for supporting this program, and a big thank you to David, our brilliant computer technician, for making this possible. If you work for an organisation that has access to used good quality laptops/Macbooks, tablets/ipads please consider donating them to Sanctuary! Call Mark on 66522127. Thanks!

Girma and his wife reunited thanks to an interest
Girma reunited with his wife and daughter.

The Sanctuary Travel Loan Program provided an interest-free airfare loan for Girma’s wife and daughter once they received their visa, and fortunately they arrived in Australia just before covid-19 closed the airports!

Their loan is now being gradually repaid and will be used to help others in need. There will be many families in urgent need of this help as covid diminishes, so we continue to raise funds to be able to offer this support in the months ahead.

We truly appreciate groups and schools like Presbyterian Ladies’ College Armidale who recently held a fundraiser to help Sanctuary provide support to needy refugees. THANK YOU!


Sanctuary’s Mentor into Work Program (part of our Refugee Advice and Support Service) is going well, with several finding training and jobs over the last year, including a young Sudanese man who received training in the solar industry at Mega Watt Solar Coffs Harbour, and is now a full-time tradie working in a large solar company in Canberra.

Refugees tend to have unique challenges compared with other job seekers, including trauma, language and cultural barriers that may not be as apparent to regular job agencies who work with the ‘general’ population. Their English needs to be at a satisfactory level so that they can understand workplace English, especially if the role they are seeking is a very socially orientated one. If needed, we seek funding to cover the cost of a relevant study course. Once they have adequate English and qualifications we approach local companies to help them to find work.

Sanctuary also continues to assist those who have been working, and are experienced and ready to start their own business. This includes helping to find premises, negotiating leases, and advising on ways to approach the business and run it in a sustainable and affordable way.

The Sanctuary Advice and Support Program continues to assist and advise people with sponsoring family members who remain in desperate situations overseas, and we appreciate the excellent support of Sydney migration agent Caitlin, who works closely with each client to try to get the best outcomes for them.

Sanctuary Basic Support Program provides occasional small amounts of financial assistance for basic food and medical needs for several needy refugee families stuck in Uganda, S. Africa, and Kenya, partnering with the Jesuit Refugee Service (JRS) in each country.

Thank you for your kind support for Sanctuary’s important work, assisting refugees who have lost so much.