Hedland will always welcome migrants with open arms according to a local support worker pushing for greater advocacy for workers and their dependants who settle in the mining community. Pilbara Community Legal Service migrant support worker Victoria Malyk said though Port Hedland was a tough place to live, support existed for those who wanted to settle down and find work in a new country. The Commonwealth-funded Settlement Engagement and Transition Support program aims to guide migrant workers and their dependants settle into their new home Ms Malyk said support and advice was “crucial” to help migrants settle into a new town, a process which could take five years. “Their issues can be complex and we all have different needs but the major area of assistance is helping them study the English language...so they are ready for employment,” she said. “The social aspect (of settlement) is very important especially living in the regions. “We can often feel very isolated and we don’t often have that cultural (and) community connection.” Ms Malyk said despite the challenge of isolation, Hedland was a community which offered a wide range of social, economic and legal support as well as opportunities to connect over culture. “It’s quite a friendly town and migrants are more than welcome here, it is very multicultural,” she said. “It can be hard but we have a very good community who are trying to look after each other. We are trying to be each others family.” Ms Malyk said Port Hedland was home to more than 77 different nationalities and support was available to anyone in need during their transition period.