Why does Council need a Multicultural Plan?
Lake Macquarie City Council supports the right of all our residents to enjoy equal rights and be treated with equal respect. Our review of the Plan will work to ensure a high level of social and economic participation by our new arrivals and multicultural residents of our city.
We have been a Refugee Welcome Zone through the Refugee Council of Australia since the early 2000s. We joined the Welcoming Cities Network through the Scanlon Foundation a few years ago – a network of cities all around the world – ensuring we’re developing as a welcoming, inclusive and cohesive city. We were the first Council in the Hunter to do so.
According to ABS data from 2016, more than 10 per cent of our population identify as being born outside of Australia and more than five per cent who speak a language other than English at home. This is ever growing with emerging Chinese, Filipino and Indian communities additional to European communities.
What does Council already do?
Council is strongly committed to supporting our multicultural community. Council has delivered and supported a range of activities, organisations and events to celebrate our cultural diversity. This includes an annual Harmony Day event, supporting the Hunter Multicultural Services Expo, advocating to state bodies on multicultural issues, Lake Mac Libraries multicultural programs and naturalising increasing numbers at our Citizenship ceremonies every three months.
You can find out more by reading our previous Multicultural Plan 2016-2020.
What are the multicultural demographics of Lake Macquarie?
Lake Macquarie has a long-term migrant history.
Our top five largest communities were originally born in Germany, South Africa, Netherlands, Philippines and India. We have new communities who have moved to our region originating from Afghanistan, Africa or Tibet.
More than 10 per cent of our community were born outside of Australian, and more than five per cent speak a language other than English at home.
Who will Council speak with to inform the plan?
Council works closely with many multicultural service providers and will ensure consultation occurs with all those who service and outreach to Lake Macquarie.
We encourage you to fill out the survey and let us know if there are particular stakeholders you feel we should contact. We would also like to speak to persons from a multicultural background to ensure the voice of lived experience is reflected in our updated Multicultural Plan.
How can I help?
If you would like to volunteer with multicultural initiatives, please contact Council staff and we will put you in touch with local organisations such as Max Solutions, Northern Settlement Services and the Multicultural Neighbourhood Centre.