Victorian funding empowers PARA to sustain critical support for Palestinians fleeing genocide

May 29, 2024

The Australia Palestine Advocacy Network (APAN) welcomes the Victorian Government’s allocation of funds to Palestine Australia Relief and Action (PARA), which will enable the organisation to continue its vital work supporting Palestinians who have fled Israel’s genocide in Gaza.

The funding was announced by Minister for Multicultural Affairs, Ingrid Stitt, to enable PARA to provide tailored, culturally appropriate legal, accommodation and mental health support, and finance and education programs to support newly arrived Palestinians to live in Victoria.

This funding support has been desperately needed by PARA, which has relied on the time, energy and networks of the diaspora Palestinian community in Australia and the benevolence of Australian volunteers and charitable organisations. 

This lifeline has come at a time when Australian Palestinians are exhausted from witnessing a genocide of their people, and striving to support loved ones in Gaza.

APAN applauds the vital work of PARA and its network of volunteers and allies, who have left no stone unturned in trying to ensure the safety and wellbeing of Palestinians who have escaped, or are still trying to flee, this brutal violence.

We urge other state governments and the Federal Government to contribute financial support to PARA to enable it to continue to provide its sorely needed services to newly arrived Palestinians.

Quotes attributed to APAN President Nasser Mashni:

We extend our gratitude to Minister for Multicultural Affairs, Ingrid Stitt, who has been a staunch ally to the Palestinian community in Victoria, and whose advocacy has played a critical role in securing this vital support for PARA.

PARA’s work these past gruelling months has been nothing short of remarkable, driven entirely by a team of dedicated volunteers who have tirelessly championed the care, safety and wellbeing of Palestinians fleeing Israel’s genocide in Gaza. Many of these volunteers are also facing their own traumas and grief as a result of Israel’s ongoing violence.

We call upon other state governments, and the Federal Government in particular that has yet to provide any funding to a Palestinian organisation from its $25M commitment to support Palestinian, Arab and Muslim communities, to do whatever they can to empower and sustain PARA and its invaluable services for newly arrived Palestinians.