Meet Dalal from Iraq who now calls Geelong home

Dalal arrived in Geelong with her parents in December 2016 as refugee through humanitarian settlement process. Before coming to Australia Dalal lived in Syria for 6 years, due to displacement as a result of war in Iraq.

Dalal had always believed in education as a key instrument of social change. Despite the dangerous security situation and social challenges in Syria, Dalal continued her studies and completed her Diploma of Business Management from EDXCEL (International British Institution) in 2016. While continuing her studies, she worked as a sales developer at an international banking equipment company in Syria. Besides this, she also volunteered as an English Language trainer at a local community centre teaching English Language to refugees in Damascus.

After arriving in Australia, Dalal was immensely grateful for being able to continue her studies. Through Diversitat Humanitarian Settlement Services program, she received support in enrolling in Bachelors of Commerce at Deakin University and starting her studies again in February 2017.

Here are few words from her about her experiences:

“As a Palestinian refugee who had suffered 7 years from the Iraqi war and 6 years from the Syrian war, it is difficult for me to compare my old life that was full of horror from detonations, sectarianism and the bad situation that was surrounding me, with my new life in Australia that are full of peace and shelter which are things I was never given in my old life.

During my journey in traveling from Syria to Australia I decided to turn over a new leaf and start a new chapter in my life and I was lucky to get support from my case worker Mr Ramzen who helped me in getting the ball rolling in my university enrolment. Despite the difficulties that I faced in starting a new life in a different country and speaking a different language, in three months I was able to commence studying Bachelor of Commerce at Deakin which was my dream that I worked hard to make it true and luckily my hard work didn’t go unnoticed. 

I am so grateful firstly to the Australian government who gave me the opportunity to live a normal life and grant me a permanent residency with health care card and some other documents that make me belong to Australia and treated me as an Australian citizen without being asked of my political affiliation or of my religion sect. 
Secondly I am grateful to my both case workers Mr Ramzen and Mr Adrian who have been giving us the support to settle down in our new country and make us feel like home. 
And thirdly I am grateful to my parents who have been  supporting me to continue my study and build up a good future.”