Filipino immigrants share their stories in new book to help others settling in Australia

Dozens of Filipino Australians are telling their stories to help other immigrants settle in regional Australia.

Whyalla’s Filipino Cultural Association has published a book containing 58 stories from immigrants about their experiences moving to Australia and some of the challenges they overcame.

Association chair Joy Penman said the book would help immigrants settle in Whyalla and would also guide politicians on how to help immigrants.

“We’re very proud of this achievement,” Dr Penman said.

“This will help not only the new immigrants, [but also] the health providers, the stakeholders and the policymakers because they will understand what works and what doesn’t for immigrants.”

This book contains dozens of stories from Filipino immigrants who settled in Whyalla.(ABC North and West: Lucas Forbes)

Dr Penman said one of the issues many Filipinos in the book faced was bullying in school and prejudice.

“Still there is that notion of immigrants taking jobs and being dependent on social security,” she said.

“[One girl said] whenever she was bullied, she called them out.”

Dr Penman said politicians could help immigrants by making language education more accessible.

“It’s so important we have this infrastructure for immigrants to be assisted for example the availability of English classes,” she said.

he association is launching the book to coincide with the Philippines’ Independence Day, which marks the day Filipino rebels declared the independence of the Philippines from Spanish rule in 1898.

“This marks years, hundreds of years of colonisation under the Spanish, the Japanese and later the Americans,” Dr Penman said.

“We want to recall all our heroes, all those who laid their lives, who made the ultimate sacrifice to bring us our freedom.”

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