Community Education

The Community Education program aims to help the wider community understand the refugee experience and, in doing so, build a society that is welcoming, understanding, and informed.


Face to Face with the Refugee Experience

Under this program a volunteer community educator and a speaker from a refugee background deliver a tailored educational presentation to school groups, teachers, and other interested community and business groups about the refugee experience.

The aim of the program is to help members of the wider community understand why people flee, the hardships of the refugee journey, and the challenges of starting again in a new country.

By giving audiences the opportunity to hear firsthand about the refugee experience, the program focuses the conversation on the human story. The program also provides an opportunity to celebrate the positive contributions that people from refugee backgrounds make to our community – and in doing so, helps us work towards a society that is welcoming, understanding, and informed on this issue.

Institutions requestion these formal speaker sessions pay a fee to SCARF, enabling us to provide appropriate remuneration to our speakers for sharing their lived experience and expertise. Funds generated from this program also support training for speakers and volunteer co-presenters.

This program has been developed with the help of the Refugee Council of Australia. In 2016 RCOA delivered a two-day training program to SCARF volunteer community educators to build a pool of volunteers as co-presenters with speakers from refugee backgrounds engaged in delivering the SCARF-RCOA community education program across the Illawarra.

An important part of the program is the support that volunteer community educators provide to speakers before, during, and after sharing their story to ensure that confronting information on the refugee experience is shared in a way that is safe and appropriate for the speaker and the target audience.

This program has gained some media attention for our UoW sessions, including two ABC radio interviews and two printed stories in the Illawarra Mercury.

If you’d like to book our Community Educators for a group, organisation, school or workplace, you can get it touch with us by emailing