The Andrews Labor Government’s massive investment in road upgrades in Melbourne’s west is not only getting people home safer and sooner, it’s supporting some of the region’s most disadvantaged.

The Western Roads Upgrade Project is teaming up with the Western Bulldogs Community Foundation, Western Chances and Western Health to support new migrants, young disadvantaged Victorians and others that face barriers to opportunity in the local community.

The partnership with the Western Bulldogs Community Foundation will strengthen the Ready SETTLE Go program, which helps migrants and refugees integrate and contribute to Melbourne’s west.

The program has helped more than 18,000 migrants and refugees settle in the west since 2007 and assists more than 2,000 new Australians each year to access community-focused services.

The support of the Labor Government’s Western Roads Upgrade Project will help an extra 130 newly-arrived migrants access the program and improve lives through literacy, family, employment and community services.

The partnership with Western Chances will support the ongoing work of the organisation, who awards merit-based scholarships and gives other support to young people impacted by financial, social or cultural barriers.

Western Chances has helped more than 2,800 young people since 2003, with many now established in industries such as engineering, medicine and commerce.

Some of Victoria’s most vulnerable patients will be assisted through a partnership with Western Health, as part of the Greatest Need Project, which gives practical support to patients suffering severe hardship – from premature babies to victims of domestic violence – as well as helping to fund vital research at Western Health.

Work is underway on the $1.8 billion Western Roads Upgrade Project to transform eight priority roads through the rapidly-growing western suburbs, through a series of intersection upgrades, road widening and duplications.

Quotes attributable to Member for Footscray Katie Hall

“Our suburbs are some of the most culturally diverse in Australia, so it’s important we offer newly-arrived migrants the opportunity to integrate and feel included.”

“This isn’t just about upgrading busy and congested roads, it’s also about helping the people in our community that need the support of these wonderful local organisations.”