Cultural Backgrounds - Finding Out

Take some time to learn about the cultural background of migrant employees / workmates. The best way to do this is to ask questions and share information about yourself as well:
- ‍‍‍‍Tell us about your name. Does it have a meaning? Is it a common name in your country? Can you teach us how to say it properly?‍‍‍‍
- How do you greet people in your culture? What do you say? Do you shake hands? Are there different ways of greeting between men and women, older and younger people? Can you teach us some greetings and goodbyes in your language?
- Tell us about your home country. Is it very different from here?
- Tell us about some of your special days of celebration. Do you celebrate Christmas or do you have other important festivals?
- What kinds of food and special dishes do you have in your culture? Are there any foods you are not allowed to eat? Do you drink alcohol?
- Did you have a job in your country? What did you do? Tell us about a typical day.
- What do you find most different or strange about Aussie culture?

Want to Know More?

Remember that it can be dangerous to generalise so it is always good to cross-check information with individuals eg "I've read that Muslims have to pray 5 times a day. Is that true for you?"

Community Profiles

Community Profiles have been developed by the Department of Immigration and Citizenship to assist service providers to better understand the backgrounds and needs of Humanitarian Program arrivals. The Profiles contain information on key settlement locations, demographic characteristics of recent arrivals, likely settlement needs and cultural and country backgrounds. Development of the Community Profiles series is ongoing and further communities will be added in the future.

Cultural and Religious Profiles

These profiles have been developed for a Home and Personal Care Kit for elderly migrants in Eastern Melbourne. They provide useful information about language, religion, customs and values, communication styles, naming conventions, greetings and key festivals and significant dates for a range of ethnic groups. Cultural and Religious Profiles

Other Useful Websites


Community Profiles for Health Care Providers - Queensland Government - This site has some useful information on communication styles and conventions of different cultural groups.

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