There’s a lot going on this time of year – end-of-year concerts, Christmas parties, and even marriage equality has passed Parliament! But while there’s much to celebrate, the Mums 4 Refugee group is striving to shine a light on the situation unfolding on Manus Island and Nauru. This Christmas, the group shares ways you can help.
For some Australian mums, the focus of the festive season is a bit different as they strive to teach children that this is also a time of year for community spirit, love and reflection. As we know, it’s hard to turn away from this heartache at any time- let alone at Christmas.
Mums 4 Refugees is a community of women brought together by a common goal – to work towards an Australia which treats asylum seekers and refugees with dignity and compassion. Last Christmas, they ran a fundraising campaign with a modest goal.
The campaign went viral, and as a result Mums 4 Refugees was able to fund two human rights lawyers at the National Justice Project.
These lawyers had some impressive wins in 2017:
- The Government wanted to strip asylum seekers in Australia’s mainland immigration detention centres of their mobile phones. These phones are a lifeline to friends, family and lawyers. The National Justice Project intervened, took this to the Federal Court and were granted an injunction, as a result, asylum seekers were able to keep their phones.
- Multiple pregnant women held on Nauru desperately needed medical care. These are women who have experienced rape and a litany of abuse, and Nauru could not provide the care they needed. The National Justice Project lawyers stepped in and secured safe passage to Australia and appropriate care for these vulnerable women.
- When men died on Manus, the National Justice Project provided legal support for their grieving families, standing with them through the inquest process.
Following this resounding success, Mums 4 Refugees are this year repeating their fundraising campaign this Christmas. 100% of the money raised will go straight to the National Justice Project, ensuring these lawyers can continue their work for another year.
And there’s no doubt the work of the Mums 4 Refugees group has a wide -ranging impact. One mum, Karen, says , “The hardest work I have ever done is trying to get these mums and bubs off Nauru, and watching the torture and humiliation of the men on Manus Island.”
Morgan is another mum who wants to help at this time of year, and says: “Mums, let’s show our children what the silly season is really about. Let’s donate, and help the National Justice Project save lives and fight for the rights of asylum seekers every day!”