‘We’re feeling really good about the community and the future’: South Sudanese Community Elder

January 26, 2019

Over 15 families from the local area gathered at Navan Park in Melton for the inaugural CMY CSG Family Fun Day on Saturday 26 January 2019.

It was a perfect, sunny day for a picnic and BBQ in the park. Mums sat with their young children and chatted to each other. The barbecue was crackling non-stop while children played in the make-shift soccer pitch. There were fun activities like face painting and music and dance.


“We’re feeling really good about the community and the future,” said Anna, a community elder and member of the Local Reference Group.

“We are enjoying the support and activities from the [Community Support Groups] Program.”


What is CSG?

The Community Support Groups (CSG) provide families with support and put them in touch with local services. The focus of a CSG is to link people to an integrated range of programs and activities such as education, training, employment pathways, health and human services, sport and recreation and other community activities. CMY is the auspice organisation for two CSGs in Melton and Brimbank, and Dandenong and Casey.

“There’s the homework club for students that we run, once school starts,” explained Suzie Bol, Project Officer with CMY’s CSG.

“There’s also the parenting club for families and parents to learn to support the students at home. We also operate a Family Support Grant, for example, there’s a family who recently lost their house in a fire. We support them with finding alternative accommodation, with school fees etc.”

“We also do fun stuff such as supporting the local cultural dance group and engaging young people through sport,” added Adut A Dharuai, CSG Project Officer.

Local government support

Apart from the families, local MP Steve McGhie, Mayor Bob Turner and local Councillor Ken Hardy also turned up for the Family Fun Day to show their support.


“It’s great to see everyone come out and create a welcoming, inclusive community,” said Steve McGhie.

“A lot of work has been done [with the community] and I look forward to ongoing success. The broader community has also done well to be more welcoming and supportive.”

“The CSG team has done amazing work here,” he said.

“I would like to do everything I can to support them and their work.”

The CSG Family Fun Day was designed to encourage the members of the South Sudanese community in Melton to get out, enjoy the summer and engage with other members of the wider community. It was a hit with the younger attendees!

“It was a lot of fun to get my face painted with my friend,” Keisha, a young participant said.

“I liked the games and the food.”

More about CMY CSG: https://www.cmy.net.au/community-support-groups