In 2019, a group of Australian expats and Canadians living in Toronto came together. They had never met each other but had one important thing in common. They were appalled by the indefinite detention of refugees in Australia’s offshore processing centres and wanted to do something to help.
Out of that initial meeting grew Ads Up Canada Refugee Network, a volunteer-driven, federally incorporated Canadian charity that mobilizes Australian expats and Canadians to resettle these refugees through Canada’s Private Sponsorship of Refugees (PSR) program.
In 2020 Ads Up Canada joined in partnership with MOSAIC (a Canadian Sponsorship Agreement Holder) in Operation #NotForgotten, a partnership between MOSAIC, Ads Up Canada and the Refugee Council of Australia. This unique partnership works to offer a durable solution for refugees who have been indefinitely detained on PNG or Nauru, building on the strength of an organization with over two decades of settlement experience (MOSAIC) and the grassroots strength and Australian knowledge of Ads Up Canada.
Ads Up Canada plays a vital role in Operation #NotForgotten. Applications are submitted to Canadian immigration through MOSAIC while Ads Up Canada recruits, trains and assists the settlement teams that welcome and support arriving refugees during their first year in Canada. We have recruited hundreds of volunteers across five Canadian provinces and over a dozen cities to form settlement teams and provide ongoing trauma-informed training and support to each team. In the process we have built vital partnerships with MOSAIC, the Refugee Council of Australia and UNHCR Australia.
The mission of Ads Up Canada Refugee Network is to inform, connect and empower Canadians and Australian expats to welcome refugees who were detained on Manus and Nauru to Canada through the Private Sponsorship of Refugees (PSR) program.
Our vision is to provide hope, an alternative pathway and durable solution for those detained through Australian offshore processing.
Anti-Oppression: We recognize that certain people face oppressive experiences because of individual and systemic unequal power related to race, colour, culture, ethnicity, language and linguistic origin, ability, socio-economic class, age, ancestry, nationality, place of birth, religion, sex, gender (including gender identity and expression), sexuality/sexual orientation, family status, and residency/migratory status in Canada. We also recognize that unequal power is present in a systemic way in the private sponsorship system. Therefore, we commit that our work will centre the knowledge, skills and experience of refugees and that we acknowledge the existence of discrimination and make a conscious effort to challenge oppression.
Responsibility: We believe that both Canada and Canadians, as well as Australia and Australians, have responsibilities to welcome and resettle refugees, and that refugees, asylum seekers and displaced persons have the right to a dignified and meaningful life and are due the rights and protections laid out in both Canadian and international agreements and conventions.
Collaboration and solidarity: We are committed to building alliances in order to achieve meaningful change and work collectively toward common aims.
Accountability: We are committed to maintaining effective and transparent governance, measurement and reporting practices.
Ads Up Canada Executive Director
Board of Directors
Refugee Council of Australia
RCoA is the Australian national umbrella body for refugees and people seeking asylum and those who support them. As a nonprofit organization, RCoA is able to accept donations on behalf of MOSAIC and Ads Up Canada for Operation Not Forgotten and issue charitable tax receipts to Australian donors.
We are grateful to these groups who have joined us either to raise significant funds to sponsor refugees from Manus and Nauru or to make significant in-kind gifts to support newcomer resettlement.
If your group would like to help raise funds, please get in touch.