Serving all Arabic Speaking Communities

Strengthening Our Family Ties (SOFT)

Strengthening Our Family Ties (SOFT)

The SOFT project was funded by Women’s Health in the North and was developed through a partnership between In-Touch Multicultural Centre Against Family Violence and Arabic Welfare.

The project was conducted in Northern Metropolitan Melbourne with Arabic speaking women who explored a range of issues on family dynamics and healthy communication.

Through close consultation with project participants at the very onset, the aims of the group were identified and the following themes were highlighted for workshop focus and exploration:

  • Building confidence in decision making and leadership
  • The value of self-care
  • Healthy communication – ways of being assertive
  • Understanding healthy relationships
  • Role models for our children

The group workshops offered women the opportunity to openly talk about problems in their relationships and as a group we explored different ways of communicating with their families about their concerns. We identified common types of communication – aggressive, passive and assertive – and through role-play each type was demonstrated. We then explored ways of empowering participants by shifting an aggressive and/or passive communication to an assertive style.

The final part of the project tapped into the creative energies of the women through weaving which became a metaphor for the women’s lives and offered them the time to reflect on family, work, love and for some women, loss. It also offered them the opportunity to tell their unique stories.

More in this category: « Teeth Tales Research Project

Community Capacity Building

  • We have recently completed projects which have addressed issues of community concern, including community safety, crime prevention, health and well-being:

    • Arabic Speaking Youth Inclusion

      Funded by the Department of Justice this project was developed to build participant skills and knowledge in the effort to reduce the incidence of crime and violence within schools, home and the community.

      Through a series of 12 education workshops and in partnership with schools, the project successfully engaged 140 Arabic speaking youth, aged 13 to 16 years.

    • Minutes Matter Media

      This was a community education project that raised awareness of the signs of heart attack amongst Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Communities in partnership with the Heart Foundation.

    • Taking a stand against cyber-bullying

      With funding from Moreland City Council this project ran a parent education programme in Arabic to strengthen the capacity of families to respond to issues of cyber-bullying. 

      The project achieved an increased awareness amongst Arabic speaking parents to keep their children safe online. Participants also developed skills to be peer educators and thus, resource and support other Arabic speaking parents around issues of cyber bullying and children’s safety.