A Multicultural Service Officer from the Department of Human Services is making a difference in the lives of Melbourne-based Vietnamese mothers through digital services information sessions.
Roger Ferguson runs information sessions every two months to help these mothers learn how to use the department’s self service options.
Thanh, one of the mothers who attends Roger’s sessions, says the additional support is invaluable.
“Before the session today, I didn’t understand,” Thanh said.
“Thanks to Roger showing us these services, I can understand how to use them better. If I can use an iPad instead of calling, that is better for everyone.
“I’m a single mother, and the support I get from the department helps me to go to work and look after my children better, so they can grow up and get a good job.”
A Vietnamese interpreter, Thu Bannan, as well as the Community Hub Coordinator at Holy Eucharist School, Adella Howard, accompany Roger at these sessions and can see the benefits for those involved.
“It’s great because these parents get a one-on-one explanation in their own dialect,” Adella said.
“We’ve got iPads and a couple of computers here in the hub, and Roger comes in here and explains to the parents how they can access services online.
“That’s helping the parents to do things by themselves. They can update their details straight away without having to travel to the office or make a call. It just makes life easier for them.”
The department’s Multicultural Service Officers provide personalised and accessible services to migrants and refugees across the country.