Multicultural COVID response funding boost

Digital literacy, health and wellbeing for seniors and domestic violence prevention are among programs to benefit from $2.9 million in NSW Government funding, supporting innovative programs run by multicultural communities responding to the COVID pandemic.

Minister for Multiculturalism Natalie Ward said 32 creative, community-led programs, prioritising areas hardest hit by the pandemic, were recipients of up to $200,000 under the Innovation Grant program.

“Many of our multicultural communities have had to dig deep and think outside the square to safeguard people’s wellbeing during this pandemic,” Mrs Ward said.

“We’re now backing these communities to foster that spirit of innovation through developing local solutions to pandemic-related problems.

“And the rewards don’t stop with the individual projects – funding recipients will also be required to share their experiences, so communities across NSW can benefit.”

The Innovation Grant program was developed with the NSW Department of Communities and Justice to support vulnerable communities to innovate and collaborate.

Cumberland Women’s Health Centre said the funding for its Café Connections program will bring women from diverse cultural backgrounds together to talk about health and wellbeing issues.

Centre Manager Salwa Al Baz said the program is an easy, innovative way for women to make social connections and combat the isolation many have experienced during the COVID pandemic.

“Being able to chat to women with similar experiences and concerns breaks down cultural barriers and builds friendship and understanding,” Ms Al Baz said.

Member for Parramatta Geoff Lee said the work of community organisations like Cumberland Women’s Health Centre was vital in helping support the local diverse community during the COVID pandemic.

“This funding from the NSW Government will ensure they can continue this important work and expand their programs that help our migrant and multicultural community,” Mr Lee said.

Other examples of funding recipients include:

Organisation Priority group Activity/service funded
Matavai Pacific Cultural Arts Inc Matavai Pacific Cultural Arts Inc Pacific Cultural Arts Therapy and Wellbeing Program will address COVID-related issues through cultural storytelling, dance and song.
KU Children's Services Migrants and refugee communities Provides COVID-19 isolated migrant families with early childhood learning online.
Bridge Housing Limited Indigenous communities The Caring for Community in COVID program is a comprehensive wellbeing initiative for communities in areas hardest hit by the pandemic.
Somali Australian Community Association of NSW (SACA) African and multicultural young people The Youth Activating Youth (YAY) Project will improve social cohesion and allow young people to connect.

For more information visit

MEDIA: Nina Stevens | Minister Ward | 0412 438 647

Page last updated: 3 May 2023 | 3:03 pm