Dutch emigrants arriving in Australia were helped by various different organisations. In the post-war period when more than 50% were members of a church, the churches played an important role. They offered advice and practical information about the new country and religious practice there and saw to it that the immigrants would be able to continue to practise their own faith. Both the Catholic and Protestant churches worked to support integration of Dutch emigrants through language classes and the acquisition of practical skills which would improve their chances in the labour market. Some Dutch churches offered other facilities like their own schools and pastors.
emigrants arrive in Australia, February 1952
The Australian government also made a significant contribution when the immigrants arrived. In 1945, a separate immigration ministry was established to channel the flow of immigrants, and starting in 1950, committees active in promoting the integration of the new arrivals received financial support from the government. Committee members offered assistance in finding employment and a place to live.
A crisis in the Australian housing market made it difficult for immigrants to find suitable accommodation. The Australian government helped by refurbishing former army camps spread out across the country to house them, but conditions were often poor and there was little privacy. Despite initial difficulties, many Dutch emigrants were able to build new lives.
The influence of Dutch post-war immigration can still be felt in Australian society. Many Dutch societies remain active in the large cities, although their number is decreasing rapidly as the first generation of immigrants ages. About 200,000 Australians of Dutch ancestry live in Australia today.