Mary Gavranic, Senior Project Officer – CEH

“How can I work better with people from migrant and refugee backgrounds?”

This is a question that Mary, senior project officer at CEH, has been working on and which has led to the development of a number of resources and tools on cultural competence. 

Mary has had a long career in the multicultural sector and has worked directly with ethnic communities and service providers looking to strengthen their practice with migrants and refugees.  At CEH, she is passionate about encouraging service providers to see “cultural competence as an integral part of our work and not an add on”.

The Cultural Competence Reflection Tool (CCRT) for practitioners provides an opportunity for workers to reflect on their knowledge and skills in relation to working with clients from migrant and refugee backgrounds.

“Everyone sees the world through their own cultural lens. This tool reminds us that there are both differences and similarities in the way we see the world. Appreciating this helps us to interact and engage more effectively with our clients”

The CCRT has been designed using CEH expertise in cultural competence, language services and health literacy.

What areas of cultural competence does the tool cover?

The tool explores workers’ beliefs and attitudes around diversity and culture; use of language services; understanding of health literacy; application of cross-cultural skills in case work; and role as advocates for diversity.

How do I use the tool?

You will be asked to respond to a number of indicators under the five areas of cultural competence. Once you complete the reflection process, submit your responses and you will receive your results via email along with links to resources and training to support your needs. The CCRT is anonymous and CEH does not keep records of responses.

Where do I find the tool?

You can find the the CCRT tool HERE. Organisations can also complete the Cultural Competence Assessment for Organisations (CCAO), which evaluates cultural competence at an organisational level. It does this through a review of policies, systems and practices across a number of domains such as governance, communication and planning. Both the CCRT and the CCAO can be completed concurrently to obtain a holistic evaluation of cultural competence at both an organisational and individual staff level.

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