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Topic: Census 2016

3 posts, 0 answered
  1. Donte'
    Multicultural Correspondent
    • Foundation members of our Multicultural Experiences section
    • Greece
    • LGBTI
    Donte' avatar
    845 posts
    7 January 2018

    In Victoria, 46% of our population is either born overseas or has at least one parent born overseas in more than 200 countries. Below is a list of the top 20 languages spoken in Victoria (from CENSUS 2016).

    1. Italian
    2. Greek
    3. Mandarin
    4. Vietnamese
    5. Cantonese
    6. Arabic
    7. Macedonian
    8. Russian
    9. Croatian
    10. Turkish
    11. Serbian
    12. Polish
    13. Spanish
    14. Maltese
    15. Khmer (Native to Cambodian)
    16. Chaldean Neo-Aramaic (Native to: Iraq, Iran, Turkey) 17. Assyrian Neo-Aramaic (Native to Iraq, Syria, Iran) 18. Hungarian
    19. Punjabi (Native to India, Pakistan)
    20. Albanian (Albanian, Kosovo and the Republic

    In the top 20 list, we have at least 5 new and emerging (NEC) languages, which are:

    1. Khmer (Native to Cambodian)
    2. Chaldean Neo-Aramaic (Native to: Iraq, Iran, and Turkey)
    3. Assyrian Neo-Aramaic (Native to Iraq, Syria and Iran)
    4. Punjabi (Native to India and Pakistan)
    5. Albanian (Albania, Kosovo and the Republic of Macedonia but also in other areas of Southern Europe)

    If you or someone you know speaks one of these languages or any language other than English, I’d be interested to hear your views on how is mental illness viewed in your community. How is portrayed in your ethnic media and publications? What happens in your country of origin and how does it differ from Australia in the way we respond to and treat mental health? What words do you use to describe mental health in your language? What supports exist (if any), in your community? What would be some of the common barriers that stop people from accessing support and services and how can we overcome them? Tell us your story. Share your experience. Will be good to see what common threads we all have but also what differences. I believe we can learn from each other collectively and individually as we move from multiculturalism to interculturalism where diverse communities work with each other to support one another. What has worked so far? What hasn’t? As we hold hands together, we all take the next step in this multicultural dance we are all part of in Australia.


  2. J.M.12345
    Multicultural Correspondent
    • Foundation members of our Multicultural Experiences section
    • Lebanon
    • A member of beyondblue's blueVoices community
    J.M.12345 avatar
    46 posts
    7 January 2018 in reply to Donte'

    Hey Donte',

    It's so interesting to see the huge variety of cultures in Australia. Personally, I'm of Lebanese origin and I speak Arabic. I have also studied French and speak it, though that's not on the list. Mental illness in Lebanese culture is very different to Western culture. I do think the stigma is more pronounced. The attitude of "sucking it up" and "it's all in your head" is more prevalent and there is less education around mental illness. However I think this is more commonly the case for older generations and older migrants. And from what I see and hear, or at least in my family, this is changing and more and more awareness is being raised.

    xx Josette

    1 person found this helpful
  3. Donte'
    Multicultural Correspondent
    • Foundation members of our Multicultural Experiences section
    • Greece
    • LGBTI
    Donte' avatar
    845 posts
    8 January 2018 in reply to J.M.12345

    That's good to hear Josette,

    You demonstrate such a good example of diversity within diversity. I, similarly was born in Greece but speak Italian also, and am not Greek Orthodox in faith. There are more than 200 ethnicities living in Victoria alone, and over 135 religions. The list above was showing the top 20 in terms of numbers. French is also spoken in Australia but not in the top 20 list in Victoria, that's why is not on the list. Mental illness in mainland Greece is also differently viewed today in comparison to Australia. Approach and treatments vary. The attitudes in Australia from Greek migrants of course vary a lot also, depending on the generation and the part of the country people migrated from, the time of their migration, their education and socioeconomic background. The children of migrants here in Australia see mental health/illness differently again, as they speak English and have access to internet and unlimited resources, information, education and supports. A lot of work has taken place the recent years from ethnic agencies such as welfare and community organisations in Australia to provide education around the issue and destigmatize mental illness. The attitude of "sucking it up" and "it's all in your head" unfortunately seems to be cross-cultural if not universal. I find it terrible and often harmful. When someone loses a leg or an arm etc people don't say that to them, but when it comes to mental health there is still a big number of people that believe it's all in your head and you can just 'wish it' or 'pray it' away! People forget that the brain is a physical organ with physical symptoms and in need for treatment like any other part of the body that suffers. It's good to hear that people have access to relevant resources, information, education and supports in their own languages and communities and that things are changing. One can only hope that each day, the more we talk about it, the better things are becoming through the awareness that we get and realizing we are not alone in this. There is no shame in suffering a mental illness and as disease doesn't discriminate, neither should we.

    1 person found this helpful

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