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Finding a home is crucial for settling into a new country, especially for refugees who have left everything behind.

This research project used “photovoice” to understand the housing experiences of refugees in Australia and how it affected their wellbeing.

Photovoice is a method where people take photos to show their daily lives. These images help start conversations and bring attention to important issues. In this project, we focused on neighborhoods, housing, and wellbeing.

Over several weeks, a group of refugees in the Albury-Wodonga area met at Gateway Health in Wodonga. They participated in three workshops with a University of Melbourne researcher, sharing their stories about the challenges they faced when settling in Australia.

They talked about specific issues in Albury-Wodonga, like the lack of public transport, which made life hard before they could get a license or buy a car. Mothers with young children found it tough to get to playgroups or health appointments. Other challenges included learning English, navigating new systems, and finding housing, all of which impacted their wellbeing. High living costs often forced them to choose between buying food and paying rent.

Despite the challenges, we also heard stories of overcoming adversity. People spoke about buying homes, getting their driver’s licenses, learning English, and growing vegetables in community gardens.

The photos and quotes from the project show both the struggles and the successes of these refugees.

Last Update: July 4th, 2024