SUPPORT SERVICES: Renee Dibben (left) is a social work student on placement with MDSS and is leading the ESL program with Anne Meehan (right).
SUPPORT SERVICES: Renee Dibben (left) is a social work student on placement with MDSS and is leading the ESL program with Anne Meehan (right).

English program to support Moranbah migrant community

Moranbah locals whose native language is not English will soon benefit from Moranbah & District Support Services’ (MDSS) English as a Second Language Program, thanks to a $5,000 grant from Stanmore Coal.

The English as a Second Language Program will provide equitable opportunities to community members who may be struggling socially due to communication barriers.

The need to provide language support for Moranbah migrants was identified by MDSS following community focus groups.

Moranbah Youth & Community Centre Manager Anne Meehan said an increased communication capacity will provide a range of benefits for the region.

“Community engagement is the overall desired outcome for the participants of this program,” Ms Meehan said.

“Both program participants and volunteers will strengthen their community connection, which is proven to have positive impacts on an individual’s mental health.

“Importantly, employability for participants will also increase, which could address our rural area skills shortage and may even prevent family relocation.

“Thanks to support from Stanmore Coal, we will be able to allocate staff to the program, provide tutor training to community volunteers, as well as supply learning materials.”

Stanmore Coal General Manager Operations Bernie O’Neill said the organisation was thrilled to help launch such a valuable program.

“Stanmore Coal is pleased to assist MDSS provide increased support to culturally diverse individuals, and make them feel more a part of our local community,” Mr O’Neill said.

“These diverse relationships will enrich our community culture and build a stronger, more inclusive Moranbah.

“Through the Stanmore Coal Isaac Plains Community Grant Program, we’ve had the opportunity to make a positive contribution to the communities in which we operate, donating close to $40,000 to local organisations and initiatives in the last financial year.”

The first learning sessions for the English as a Second Language Program are set to take place before 30 September.

For more information about the Stanmore Coal Isaac Plains Community Grant Program, visit

www.stanmorecoal.com.au.

Applications will reopen on 1 January 2020.


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