'Getting help from David was a turning point in my life': new fellowship for refugees and migrants


23 February 2017

A new fellowship honours the legacy of a cherished volunteer, who worked with one of the programs we run to assist migrants, refugees and asylum seekers.


David Sier mentoring Justina
David Sier mentoring Justina, a participant of our Brain Bank program

David Sier volunteered as a mentor with our Brain Bank program for three and a half years before his sudden passing in September last year.

His widow, Fiona Sharkie says he touched the lives of many.

“He just wanted to help people in any useful way he could. David was a huge supporter of migrants and refugees; he truly believed they make Australia a better place,” she says.

The reflections of two of his mentees show the depth of his impact on their lives.

“Getting help from David was a turning point in my life. His time and support helped me settle in Melbourne, finish my study and helped me throughout my career,” Mohamed says.

“He was not only my mentor but a friend and brother that I relied on,” Justina says.

The annual David Sier Fellowship is open to people from migrant, refugee and asylum seeker backgrounds, currently taking part in a Brotherhood program, nominated by the Brotherhood volunteer who supports them.

The Fellowship aims to help make small changes for program participants that may increase opportunities for education, training or employment. Up to $1,000 is available to cover costs such as text books, short courses, English language support and learning to drive.

Successful applicant(s) will be announced during National Volunteer Week in May.

To learn more about the programs we run, visit our page for Refugees, Immigration and Multiculturalism.

View our Act page to learn about volunteering or contributing to our work.

The Brotherhood of St Laurence (BSL) acknowledges and understands its obligations under the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child and recognises that all children and young people have the right to be treated with respect and care, and to be safe from all forms of abuse. BSL has a zero tolerance towards child abuse.
Read the official statement signed by the Executive Director.

The Brotherhood recognises the harm that family violence causes and that freedom from violence is a basic human right.
We will support our staff, volunteers, clients and the community if they experience violence.

Find out more about the work of the Brotherhood
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The Brotherhood of St Laurence acknowledges and recognises the Traditional Owners of the land upon which we live and work, and we pay our respects to their Elders both past and present.

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