Culture & Language Inclusive Practice Studio
The Culture and Language Inclusive Practice Studio (CLIPS) is a practical implementation of the ANROWS research on Multicultural and Settlement Services Supporting Women Experiencing Violence (MuSeS) with funding provided by WorkUP. Through this research, it was found that migrant and refugee women who have resettled in Australia face a range of challenges and barriers to access reproductive health and domestic violence services. In the literature on this topic two things are clear, firstly the importance of supporting migrant and refugee women to have access to information about reproductive health and how this correlates to greater quality of life for migrant and refugee women. Ussher et al (2017) explain that it improves their “physical, emotional, mental and social well-being”. Secondly, a study led by the Translational Health Research Institute and Western Sydney university investigating migrant and refugee women’s preferences for the delivery of sexual and reproductive healthcare information (Hawkey et al, 2021) confirms that; It is essential for healthcare providers and educators to be aware of women’s preferences for sexual and reproductive health (SRH) information and service delivery, to provide culturally responsive care. Hawkley et al (2021), explains that there is an increasing body of literature that identifies barriers to migrant and refugee women’s SRH. However, the area that has been missing is an in-depth understanding of how women from migrant and refugee backgrounds would like to receive information and care when it comes to sexual and reproductive healthcare.
With over half of the population in Australia identifying as culturally and linguistically diverse, Children by Choice through this Practice Studio recognises that supporting the wider community means providing resources that are culturally appropriate and available in their own language. This is one of the ways in which organisations can begin to remove systemic barriers that migrant and refugee communities face when accessing services. In doing so, it directly responds to the challenges and barriers faced in gaining access to resources that are culturally safe and in language.
Through this Practice Studio, Children by Choice utilised a feminist, intersectional and anthropological framework to ensure that the women in the communities that we worked with, are held as the experts of their bodies, knowledge and experience regarding topics of reproductive health, reproductive coercion and abuse (RCA) and abortion.