Ehsan works at the Centre for Asylum Seekers, Refugees and Detainees (CARAD), an organisation that helps support refugees and asylum seekers in the community.
“As someone who has spent most of his life being a refugee or asylum seeker in several countries, I know that this is never an easy experience.
“It is full of pain, barriers and challenges that make people feel hopeless, vulnerable and undervalued. And it’s difficult to live in a safe place but have limited access to the basic requirements of life.
“It’s so sad to see people suffering, including children, women and the elderly.
“Working at CARAD, I can see how many refugees and asylum seekers are struggling to survive, especially since COVID-19.
"Asylum seekers and refugees on temporary visas have been acutely affected by the pandemic as many are employed in casual and insecure jobs, and are not eligible for Australian Government income support.
“As a result of unemployment and loss of income, we are seeing an increase in the numbers of our clients, more mental health issues, poverty, overcrowding in private accommodation and homelessness.”
Ehsan believes that Refugee Week is important because it promotes equality, love, dedication and humanity.
“The week advocates for the rights of people who have escaped war, violence or persecution to save their lives and to live with dignity.
“I believe that refugees and asylum seekers should be welcomed and included. I am confident that these people would bring so many benefits to our Australian community if given the opportunity.”