Coronavirus affected international students are being helped by the Victorian government with care packages being provided through the Study Melbourne centre and online counselling.
Volunteers from the international student community gathered at the Study Melbourne Student Centre in Hardware Lane today to fill care packages with grocery vouchers, support service information and treats, to help students get through two weeks of home isolation.
The wellbeing of Victoria’s international students is a priority for the Labor Government, which has provided $4 million in welfare programs through Study Melbourne since November 2014.
The Government is also partnering with the Centre for Holistic Health to deliver free professional health care advice and counselling services, with the option for services in English, Mandarin and Cantonese to make sure all Coronavirus affected international students are being looked after.
On 1 February, the Commonwealth Government advised that visitors from mainland China who are not Australian citizens or permanent residents, or their dependents, will not be allowed entry into Australia.
“We are waiting to welcome many international students back to Victoria as soon as conditions allow, and we are doing what we can to help those students who are already here”, Minister for Jobs, Innovation and Trade Martin Pakula said.
Anyone who has visited or transited through mainland China (excluding Hong Kong, Macau or Taiwan) since 1 February is advised to stay home from work or school and avoid all public places for 14 days.
If people begin to feel unwell and develop shortness of breath, a cough or respiratory illness during the 14 days since they were last in mainland China, they should seek medical attention. Call ahead to your GP or emergency department and mention your travel to mainland China.
International students who are self-isolated are encouraged to visit the Study Melbourne website or WeChat page and sign up to receive a care package and more information.
International students currently waiting to come to Victoria are eligible to receive online counselling and health advice and are encouraged to make contact via the Study Melbourne website.
Coronavirus affected International Students with questions or concerns can also contact Study Melbourne through the WeChat or Facebook group.
“I thank Victoria’s Chinese community, whose members are supporting people in home isolation. This is a tough time for students who would normally be gearing up to start their first semester and we thank everyone for their efforts to preserve public health”, Minister Martin Pakula added.