Brain Bank

The Brain Bank program matches skilled volunteers with newly-arrived refugees and migrants seeking mentoring or assistance to develop community projects.

A participant of of Brain Bank, with their mentor, reading books in the library

The Brain Bank, a group of 25 to 30 volunteer mentors in Melbourne, provides information and expert advice to refugees and migrants who want to support their communities. The mentors provide guidance and encouragement, building long-term relationships that help community members overcome cultural barriers, isolation, limited skills and a lack of confidence.

Currently our Brain Bank mentors are providing support in the following areas:

  • written English support and homework tutoring
  • support with resumes and finding employment opportunities
  • project planning and grant applications to secure funds for community group activities
  • workshops about governance and how to run community organisations
  • assisting women’s groups to plan and run social activities
  • assisting community groups with leadership and advocacy training.

The Brain Bank program currently runs in Fitzroy, Epping and Broadmeadows, servicing the local government areas of Yarra, Whittlesea and Hume.

Who can access Brain Bank

Anyone with a refugee, migrant or asylum seeker background can join the Brain Bank program.

In 2016, Brain Bank mentors:

  • supported a mature nursing student from Sierra Leone with her written skills to complete her TAFE assignments
  • helped a young African man with his job applications, and to secure employment
  • tutored a Year 12 student in physics and chemistry who has now enrolled in medicine 
  • advised a young woman from Ethiopia on how to fill her application for Australian citizenship.

Interested in finding a mentor for your community? Please contact us by phone on (03) 9422 5650 or email at lkithamba(at)bsl.org.au

Partners

We acknowledge the following organisations for their generous support:

City of Yarra

Department of Social Services

The Leith Trust


Are you interested in becoming a mentor or a program participant?

Please contact the Brain Bank program at Epping Community Services Hub below for more information.


Contact us

Brain Bank Program
Epping Community Services Hub
713 High Street, Epping, Victoria 3076
Phone: (03) 9422 5626
Email: lkithamba(at)bsl.org.au

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