New support service for international students in Australia

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Melbourne, Jan 29 (ANI): The Victorian Government has opened a new 24-hour support and welfare service that will make a real difference for international students completing their studies in Victoria.

At the opening of the Victorian Government's new International Student Care Service (ISCS) in Carlton, Premier John Brumby said students from overseas would now have greater access to a range of accommodation, counselling, legal, emergency and welfare assistance.

"We understand that our visiting international students can feel isolated from family and friends, especially without a strong social network and they can find themselves disoriented in a new community where they might struggle with the language," Brumby said.

"This International Student Care Service - the first of its kind in Australia - is going to make a real difference to all those young people from all over the world who come to Victoria to live, work and study.

"The service is a one-stop shop where international students can get the help and support they need, 24 hours a day, seven days a week," Brumby said.

The ISCS provides a single point of contact for students in the event of an emergency, such as those in need of counselling, crisis accommodation and food aid, as well as contact with other welfare services.

Students can call a 24-hour phone line for advice and support or access the drop-in service in Carlton during business hours.

Brumby said Victoria had developed an international reputation as a great place to study and work and the Victorian Government was taking action to strengthen that reputation.

"Last year there were more than 190,000 international students enrolled in Victorian education institutions. International students make a significant contribution to Victoria's diverse, multicultural society and enhance our community in many ways," Brumby said. (ANI)

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