Home Planet Program | Environment Victoria

Donate Now

Home Planet Program

We’re working with recently arrived migrant and refugee youth

Emerging out of our successful Multicultural Leaders in Sustainability program, Home Planet partners with AMES to work with newly arrived migrant and refugee youth across Melbourne.

The five month long program empowers participants to make their everyday lives more environmentally friendly and equips them with skills to engage others around sustainability. 

The first six weeks are devoted to interactive training around the topics of sustainability, energy, water and waste. After this, participants are supported to deliver their own community sustainability projects.

Each semester the program also offers participants the chance to connect with our environment via field trips and weekend long camp. Participants who complete the project component of the program earn a Certificate I in Active Volunteering, a stepping stone for further study or a career.

For many participants, the Home Planet program is transformational:

"At first we used to use a lot of things without thinking. We knew it was bad, but we didn't feel it. Now we feel it." – Yonas, Footscray 2012

For others, the field trip and the camp are their first time since they arrived in Australia outside suburban Melbourne 

As well as deepening their understanding of the environmental issues participants learn about in the interactive training, project work allows participants to redefine their relationship to their new country – as one of giving back and teaching others.

The program also has a significant direct impact on our environment:

“When I arrived in Australia, I took a long shower - maybe 20 or 15 minutes every day. Now I shower for 4 minutes." – Abdulkadir, Footscray 2012

"At first I left the power on all the time. Now I turn it off when I go to bed" – Alex, Footscray 2012

Through their projects, participants in the Semester 1 2012 Home Planet program passed on the environmental message to over 300 people.

Home Planet is made possible with support and funding from the Department of Human Services, Engage! Program; Lord Mayor’s Charitable Foundation; Australian Ethical Investment; Brimbank City Council’s St Albans Connect; and City West Water


June 2013: It's our Home Planet multicultural Environment Expo!

What came before Home Planet? Multicultural Leaders in Sustainability (MLS)!

Check out our new sustainability translations - in languages from Amharic to Zomi!

Find out what all the buzz is about, below.



World Environment Day: Phoenix Youth Centre hosts green expo

12 June 2013
Maribyrnong Weekly
WORLD Environment Day was marked last Wednesday with a series of hands-on activities and displays in Footscray.

Multiculturalism a winner at environment expo

5 June 2013
For World Environment Day on 5 June newly arrived young people from all corners of the world came together with their local councils and communities to stage the Home Planet...

Pupils taste the diversity

4 June 2013
Brimbank Leader
A MELTING pot of culinary delights from contrasting cultures was whipped up in St Albans by AMES students.

Water use soars after heatwave

14 March 2013
Jason Dowling, The Age

The water use records keep tumbling this year, with Melbourne recording another record in the past week.

With temperatures well into the...


Second time around, but first in fashion

11 July 2012
Benjamin Millar, Maribyrnong Weekly

RECYCLING is the new black, judging by a fun-filled fashion show at AMES Footscray on Friday.

The show was put together by the AMES youth class as part of a...


Green light for the environment

12 June, 2012
Anthony Loncarcic, Brimbank Weekly 

Newly arrived migrants in Brimbank are taking part in a program designed to educate them about the environment and sustainability.

About 25 students at AMES...


From Twitter Twitter

Cameron Wheatley

Sustainable travel tips

posted by Cameron Wheatley on Tuesday, 22 December, 2015 - 12:56

How can we make sure that when we travel our desire to live responsibly doesn’t get left at home? We’ve pulled together a selection of resources that will help you make wiser travel choices this summer.

Nick Roberts

Healthy rivers and water-smart cities should be more than a pipe-dream

posted by Nick Roberts on Friday, 4 December, 2015 - 16:58

As the impacts of a record El Niño compounded by climate change hit home across Victoria this year, discussion about what to do with our limited water resources is once again heating up.

Parts of Victoria are again in drought. Water earmarked for environmental use to help...

Amy Yang

Riad and Mary's story

posted by Amy Yang on Thursday, 25 June, 2015 - 12:57

Riad doesn’t remember the exact date his family fled their home in the city of Al-Hasaka, Syria, nor the date they arrived in Lebanon. But the day he and his wife, Mary, arrived in Australia is a date that he easily recalls: Tuesday the 14th of October 2014.


Nick Roberts

Australian houses are just glorified tents in winter

posted by Nick Roberts on Monday, 15 June, 2015 - 11:54

As we shiver through the first weeks of winter, here's a fact to give you goosebumps: more people die from the cold in Australia than in Sweden. According to a new study published in medical journal The Lancet, cold contributed to about 3.9 per cent of deaths in Sweden,...


Introducing our new Campaigns Director, Alex White

posted by markwakeham on Monday, 1 September, 2014 - 18:24

Our new Campaigns Director, Alex White, starts today. Here's what he has to say about why he came to Environment Victoria.

Back in 2012, I spent three months working on the Obama campaign in Boston and New Hampshire. The locals, as well as being bemused by my hard-to-understand...


From Flickr Flickr

Nothing to see here. Keep on moving...

  (function(d, s, id) (document, 'script', 'facebook-jssdk'));Help us build a force to Reclaim Victoria's Environment! Environment Victoria has an amazing community of volunteers working together to Reclaim Victoria's Environment. Want to become a part of it? In this election year we'll need...

  (function(d, s, id) (document, 'script', 'facebook-jssdk'));Help us build a force to Reclaim Victoria's Environment! Environment Victoria has an amazing community of volunteers working together to Reclaim Victoria's Environment. Want to become a part of it? We'll need all the help we can...

Subscribe to our mailing list

* indicates required


© 2016 Environment Victoria