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'It’s been such a wonderful experience working with Perth Festival…the opportunities provided are opportunities that majority of our clients would not have ever experienced.' 

– Florence Tressler, Step by Step Program, MercyCare 

Our Community Partner program invites community groups to attend Festival events and take part in opportunities tailored to their members and staff, designed alongside their organisation. Community Partners are offered free access to shows and transport and other ways to reduce barriers to attendance. These partnerships help us to have ongoing, meaningful relationships with a diverse cross-section of Western Australia.

Our 2024 Community Partners are a range of service and advocacy organisations, read about each of them below.

Community Partners at Wundig Wer Wilura cr. Claire Birch

MercyCare’s Step by Step Settlement Service provides support for newly arrived humanitarian entrants and other eligible migrants who live in the Perth metropolitan area. Their team works with people in their first five year in Australia, offering its Step by Step Settlement Service free of charge, operating in partnership with Save the Children and the Edmund Rice Centre of WA. They provide a range of migrant and refugee settlement programs.  

Read more about MercyCare here 

The Welcome Hub is an integrated service model with a one-stop settlement shop based at the Stirling Leisure Centres - Herb Graham Recreation Centre in Mirrabooka. The Welcome Hub offers a range of services including settlement-related information and assistance to access mainstream services, individualised casework and support for individuals and families, capacity building and leadership programs. It has been established through a partnership with five organisations; City of Stirling (lead), Metropolitan Migrant Resource Centre (MMRC), Ishar Multicultral Women’s Health Services, Association to Torture and Trauma Survivors (ASeTTS) and Youth Futures.  

Read more about The Welcome Hub here. 

'Just wanted to say thank you so much for yesterday. The ladies really enjoyed the film and were very grateful! The refugee experience is something many of them can relate to and Omar’s story was very touching. '

– Birkti Mesfin, The City of Stirling’s Welcome Hub 

'Perth Festival has provided some fantastic opportunities for the young people we work with. The ‘Bran Nue Dae’ Community Preview was a new and exciting experience for many of the young people and their families. Everyone also had a great time putting their artistic skills into action by creating some bright and vibrant lanterns to be put on display at the Festival of Lights. A big ‘Thank You’ to the Perth Festival team.'

– Holly Dewar - Youth Programs Coordinator, Metropolitan Migrant Resource Centre 

ERCWA was established in 1998 to provide essential settlement services and community education activities for people from refugee and migrant backgrounds, as well as Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island people, in the northern suburbs of Perth. The Centre has expanded more widely around the city with a particular emphasis on young people and youth leadership as a way to ensuring a positive future for all. ERCWA coordinates a range of community and youth programs that cater for children and young people.

Often, the people that we work with face many barriers to participation including cost, travel distance, social isolation and discrimination. These barriers are overcome by our sustainable and long-term youth programs, delivered predominantly after school and free of charge. Over 600 young people each month participate in our youth sports, arts and leadership training programs, alongside leisure and cultural programs. The youth services also transition young people to mainstream sporting clubs through the assistance of the KidSport initiative. 

Read more about Edmund Rice Centre here.  

'The Perth Festival gave the Edmund Rice Leaders an experience of a lifetime, providing some support to them to attend some of the programs in this year’s festival, it was just exciting to see them happy, a great collaboration, thank you.'

– Bellamore Ndayikeze, Leadership and Creative Arts/ Sports, Edmund Rice Centre WA 

Propel Youth Arts WA is the peak body for youth arts in Western Australia, providing young people aged 12-26 with access and opportunities to engage with arts and culture on their own terms. 

Established in 2003 as the Youth Arts Network and formerly known as Propelarts, Propel provides services and programs across all art forms. Propel strengthens our future creative communities by providing access to information, networks, mentoring, skills development, and employment in the arts and creative industries to young people and those who work with them. Propel is focused on arts advocacy, skills development, and access to opportunities, for those already engaged in the arts and those who would like to be. 

Propel runs a suite of youth arts engagement programs, including the annual Youth Week WA KickstART Festival; the Sketchbook Project; the Kadjin Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Youth Arts Network; and Pivot - arts admin for sustainable careers.  

Read more about Propel Youth Arts here.  

'Perth Festival’s generous involvement with our community programs has allowed us to create a connection between the incredible artists that create within their spaces to the young people we work with.

Through Kadjin, the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Youth Arts Advocacy Network, we together were able to provide multiple opportunities for young people to network, attend shows, experience culture, heal and have yarns about art. This generosity fostered a beautiful relationship between peers and we look forward to develop this relationship in future.'

– Zal Kanga-Parabia, Propel Youth Arts WA 

My Place provides individualised and flexible support to people with disability and their families. My Place now supports around 400 people with disability to live in their own homes, or remain in their family home, and become valued and contributing members of their community. 

Read more about My Place here.

YACWA is a united, independent and active advocate for the non-government youth sector and young people. Focusing on young people’s varied needs at local, State and Federal Government level, YACWA works to engender and enhance positive community attitudes towards young people. Our work is guided by the values of respect, equity, integrity and the celebration of diversity.

Read more about YACWA here.

CAN is an arts producer working at the forefront of Community Arts and Cultural Development practice, partnering with communities to share stories that are unwritten or unspoken. Working with artists skilled in community practice, CAN creates positive social change through the arts, building inclusion and understanding between people.

Focused on First Nations and Culturally and Linguistically Diverse (CALD) communities, CAN's work breaks through the silence arising from systemic disempowerment to share the daily acts of resistance and resilience that underpin survival in underrepresented communities. This process creates compelling art and storytelling that has broad reach beyond the communities where it is produced, realising the vision of a creatively dynamic, inclusive Australia.

Brokering connections between community, stakeholders, arts colleagues and local government, CAN's programs’ results include increased reconciliation; improved employment for participants, including the initiation of artistic careers; and increased economic development from events and activities.

Read more about CAN here.