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Re-imagining the resettlement of refugees by engaging with an ethic of thriving

Vincent, K, Baltra-Ulloa, AJ ORCID: 0000-0002-4936-6850 and Williams, G 2020 , 'Re-imagining the resettlement of refugees by engaging with an ethic of thriving' , British Journal of Social Work , pp. 1-17 , doi: 10.1093/bjsw/bcaa135.

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Learning to thrive in the context of refugee resettlement can be a difficult task toconsider and sustain when so much focus is given to promoting survival, recoveryfrom trauma and self-sufficiency. It is argued that this resettlement paradigm isrooted in notions of refugee passivity, primarily motivated by a minimalistic approachto social assimilation. We argue this resettlement paradigm suffocates thriving by imposing the government’s aim of achieving independence instead of privileging thenewly arrived person, their lived experiences, dreams and aspirations. This articleshares how an ethic of thriving in resettlement, with its focus on relationality, couldtransform the way we think about ‘integration’ and what ‘successful resettlement’means within the Australian context. To anchor what the ethic of thriving offers theresettlement sector we share lessons learned from applying a thriving paradigm toYoungMILE—a mentorship project dedicated to launching young refugee arrivedleaders in the community. This unique programme embraced relational, experimentaland exploratory approaches characterised by flexibility, mutual learning, curiosity, listening to bigger goals and acknowledging the skill sets of people’s past experiences.Importantly, the project also prioritised connecting people of refugee backgroundand the host community to promote meaningful integration.

Item Type: Article
Authors/Creators:Vincent, K and Baltra-Ulloa, AJ and Williams, G
Keywords: mentoring, refugee resettlement, relationality, resettlement practice
Journal or Publication Title: British Journal of Social Work
Publisher: Oxford Univ Press
ISSN: 0045-3102
DOI / ID Number: 10.1093/bjsw/bcaa135
Copyright Information:

Copyright 2020 The Author(s). Published by Oxford University Press on behalfof The British Association of Social Workers. All rights reserved.

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