A recent study by the AMES Australia has found that 86 percent of refugees are happy and satisfied with their new life in Australia.
The AMES study, released in June, shows that stable work and opportunities for children are the priorities for most refugees, and safety and security are the things they most liked about Australia.
AMES chief executive officer Cath Scarth said the survey showed that overwhelmingly refugees newly arrived to the country had a positive, optimistic attitude and were keen to work and contribute to the community.
“The findings from the study indicate that newly arrived refugees are not passive bystanders but are actively engaged in forging a new life and demonstrating a high level of ingenuity and resilience to adapt to life in their new country,” Ms Scarth said.
The survey also showed that 76% of refugees felt welcomed by regular Australians, and 90% reported no encounters with racism.
Speaking to the ABC News, Bushra Afrasiabi, a refugee from Afghanistan, who fled to secure a bright future for her 18-month-old child, said she has never felt like a refugee in Australia.
“I don’t feel like I am less than an Australian citizen. I feel I have the same rights. It just makes me very happy. Makes me feel good,” she said.
Over the span of 10 years until December 2022, Australia provided refuge or resettlement to 180,073 refugees. This accounts for 0.75% of the global count of 23.99 million refugees resettled during that period. In worldwide rankings, Australia ranked 30th overall, 41st per capita, and 77th relative to its Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in terms of refugee support.
Om Dhungel, a Bhutanese refugee, now residing in Blacktown, shared his journey from being a refugee to becoming an Australian citizen at Wollongong City Library on Thursday. Originally from Bhutan, he was among over 100,000 Bhutanese citizens of Nepalese origin who faced exile during the 1990s. Enduring years within a Nepalese refugee camp, Om and his fellow refugees eventually found new homes across the globe, including Australia. In his memoir “Bhutan to Blacktown,” he traces his journey from a Bhutanese resident to a refugee and ultimately an Australian citizen.