National Conference on Reconciliation, Multiculturalism,Immigration and Human Rights

Mr Roger Van Der Veen
Lecturer, School of Human Services, Southern Cross University, NSW

The Social-Emotional Side of Settlement in a Regional Centre

This paper will present the social-emotional side of settlement of Asian immigrant and refugee people in a regional centre. Most new arrivals settle in metropolitan cities. The Asian born population of Australia is 5.0%. In regional centres, this percentage drops to half or less. Little is known about the social-emotional side of their settlement. This side is often overlooked such as belongingness, dislocation, loss, isolation, support, feelings, and finding meaning.

This paper will present the results of these issues from a study in which 31 Asian people were interviewed. Respondents shared that they felt more isolated in a regional centre. Their initial dislocation was intense but not excessively long. They felt they belonged to and in Australia. These results and others were unexpected given that regional centres have fewer settlement services, far fewer people from the same cultural background to give support, and the centres' stereotype of conservativeness.

Presentation Type
30 min paper

University of Technology, Sydney, 1-2 December 2000

Papers & Workshops