Projects funded in 2017

In 2017 the Victorian Government funded 13 projects that support up to 110,000 international students while they’re studying in Victoria.

Category 1 - International Student Group Activities

These projects receive funding of up to $5000.

Chinese Mid-Autumn Festival Gala

Victoria Chinese Student Association

This event delivers a traditional Chinese Festival Celebration (Mid-Autumn) at the Melbourne Town Hall, consisting of a minimum 10 performances collected from Chinese student and scholar groups at Victoria-based universities. This year's Chinese Mid-Autumn Gala (CMAG) includes music, dancing, magic, comedy and drama.

Singaporean National Day Gala Dinner

Singaporeans of Victoria

Singaporeans of Victoria (SoV) was funded to deliver the National Day Gala Dinner on 11 August 2017. This event has been held annually since 2010 and has evolved to become an annual ball, involving renowned Singaporean entertainers and artists flown in to perform. In 2016, the event was attended by more than 400 people including students and working adults.

Category 2 - Wellbeing Partnership Activities

These projects receive funding of up to $75,000.

International Student Legal Information Project

Inner Melbourne Community Legal

This project delivers a community legal education project for international students studying at universities and private education providers in Melbourne. This project will cover three legal topics:

  • Practical legal knowledge: information about the Australian legal system and interacting with the police, Protective Services Officers ('PSOs'), and the courts
  • Personal safety: information regarding family violence, sexual harassment, assault, and theft
  • Common legal issues: information regarding tenancy rights, driving offences, and infringements. Attendees will also be provided with pamphlets detailing the core information and contact details for relevant authorities .

Project Study Safe

Crime Stoppers Victoria

The Project Study Safe aims to empower international students through:

  • information on how to stay safe
  • education on different crime reporting options
  • practical tools to minimise the chance of becoming a victim of crime.

Crime Stoppers Victoria will reach out to students through workshops and a comprehensive social media campaign which aims to reach 100,000 students in Victoria.

Food, Facts and Friendship: Supporting Latin American Students in Victoria

Community Hubs Australia

This project helps deliver the Refuge of Hope's Food Distribution Program which supports Latin American international students when they first arrive in Melbourne. This is achieved through:

  • holding monthly 'Welcome to Melbourne' mini information expos
  • two hours of information sessions and workshops on relevant topics which will be presented to students each month
  • employing a Portuguese-speaking staff member and attracting significantly more Brazilian participants to the events and associated support activities
  • expanding on the Student Buddy and Volunteer Development programs already funded through the ISW Program in 2016 to recruit and organise participants.

The project helps participating students practice the respective languages they are learning (i.e. English, Spanish, Portuguese) and connect newly arrived students into the community, while furthering research into the learning and social benefits of this 'Service-Learning' activity for both cohorts.

Geelong International Student Association (GISA)

Gordon Institute of TAFE

The establishment and running of the Geelong International Student Association (GISA) provides international students in Geelong with the tools to be an advocate for themselves and their peers in the wider Geelong community, as well as running social, educational and cultural events. Seven international students from higher education institutions will form the GISA leadership committee and will invite members and associate members to join GISA. The membership target is 10% of the overall higher education student population in Geelong. The project aims to engage over 275 international students in Geelong.

International Student Academy Program

Cricket Victoria

Cricket Victoria's philosophy is that cricket is a game for everyone, regardless of their cultural background, religion, gender, age or ability. This project builds on Cricket Victoria’s 2016-2017 pilot program, which was developed in consultation with Bendigo Kangan Institute Broadmeadows and Deakin University Burwood, and saw more than 70 students from 12 different countries of origin offered a 4-week introduction to cricket. The program introduces students to local sporting and community facilities, invites international students to explore places around Victoria , including access to the iconic Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG).

Community and Cultural Support for International Students in Bendigo

Loddon Campaspe Multicultural Services

This project meets existing service gaps and needs for international students in the Bendigo region through new, innovative activities. This projects builds on the previous International Student Welfare Program funding, and ensures that international students in Bendigo have the opportunities and resources to engage in Australian culture, make friends and networks and increase their vocational and employment skills.

AFIS Information Day 2018

Australian Federation of International Students

The AFIS Information Day is an event held in March each year targeting newly arrived students to Melbourne. The 2018 event provides students with information about key issues to support their transition to student life in Melbourne, including information about employment, accommodation, safety, health personal and career development, immigration matters, wellbeing matters and accessing the many support services on offer. This free event will be staffed by student volunteers and will also provide food and entertainment.

CISA National Conference 2017

Council of International Students Australia

The CISA National Conference was held in Canberra in July 2017. Over 200 delegates attended, including 50 international student leaders from Victoria. This annual conference provides a national forum for international student leaders and stakeholders with an interest in advancing international students' interests, and supports the development of student leaders and the international education sector. Attendees discussed solutions to international student issues and how international students can make the most of their time studying in Australia.

18th ISANA Victoria/Tasmania State Conference 2017


The 18th annual ISANA VIC/TAS State was held on 1 September 2017.  With over 100 delegates in attendance, this conference provided an opportunity for participants to be up-to-date with the latest developments in international education and identify future strategies and actions to enhance the international student experience. The conference included expert speakers, facilitators, and panels including students.

Topics at the conference covered accommodation, visa class changes, use of social media, student support services, Overseas Student Health Cover, travel, student safety, sexual health and equity, the importance of networking, and the latest research on international student social network behaviour and changes.

Learn. Lead. Thrive.

Eastern Innovation Business Centre

Learn. Lead. Thrive. begins with a communications skills workshop for 100 international students, leading into a facilitated and fully supported leadership program for over 20 of those students tasked with and supported through leadership activities aligned with their own study field. The Leadership Program Participants (LPP) then analyse and share insights with their peers in a structured and supported process to educate the entire cohort of the similarity of business needs and methods of communication to best create sustainable business relationships. The final component is a one day mini-conference and celebration of the learning and growth of the leaders involving over 100 international students and their supporters. At this event, the LPP will share their learnings with other students in small groups. All participants will experience speed networking and communication activities designed to allow them to comfortably communicate with each other. Facilitators and speakers will inspire and support the students throughout the day.

Rainbow Breakfast Club

Discover English Pty Ltd

Rainbow Breakfast Club consists of six events catering to the gender-diverse international student community in Victoria. These events occur monthly and consist of a free healthy breakfast to promote good physical health. There is also guided discussion on gender diverse issues to help ease loneliness and isolation for vulnerable students. Three of the events feature a free yoga session to promote good mental health. The other three feature guest speakers from the gender diverse international student community speaking about various relevant services, programs and events in Melbourne.