The controversial former AFL player Spida Everitt revealed that his views had shifted since leaving Australia on his Go Back journey.
Samuel Leighton-Dore

4 Oct 2018 - 10:34 PM  UPDATED 5 Oct 2018 - 10:22 AM

The final episode of SBS's Go Back To Where You Came From Live has seen the harsh reality of the world refugee crisis leave its mark on several of the show's hardest participants.

In Bentiu, South Sudan, controversial former AFL player Spida Everitt revealed that his views had shifted dramatically since leaving Australia on his Go Back journey.

Having previously described Australia's refugee policy as "too lenient" and described his ongoing fear of Sudanese gangs in Melbourne, Everitt said that he'd had a change of heart.

"When you see it for yourself, you start totally understanding that you don't want to be around here for too long," Spida said.

"I was pretty ill informed to be honest," he reflected.

"To see what I've been able to experience, you wouldn't wish to send any family back to a refugee camp."

He continued: "It's inhumane."

Speaking live, former Adelaide prison guard Steve described the impact of his firsthand experience, particularly traveling by boat from Turkey to Lesbos, Greece - a dangerous journey competed by countless refugees before him.

"It gives you a bit more understanding," Steve admitted, saying that his eyes had been opened.

"Can we do it better? I think so."

He continued: "Should we do it better? Yes."

He then said that he believes Australia is already doing "a good job".

"I definitely think we could probably do more," he added. However, he said that it needed to be done in a non-divisive way, so as to address the concerns of other Australians like him.

Reiterating that he believes there's "too much heart" in the discussion, Steve conceded that his views have shifted "a little bit."

"Look, I'm just a normal Australian guy trying to be as honest as I can," he said.

In Canada, theatre student Gareth and devout Christian conservative Dannii met Amir, an Iranian refugee who spent years in detention on Manus Island. Shocked at the length of time Amir spent there, Dannii, who said Australia's immigration policies were "pretty much spot-on" admitted, "I was never really aware of the idea that people were left there indefinitely before this. It does trouble me. And it is something that I'm not...I'm not entirely OK with it."

For Spida, he admitted to doing a 180-degree flip. "We can never explain exactly what these people are going through," adding he thinks Australians still have the power to help.

It's a new mission, Everitt said, that he'll be taking home with him.

'Go Back To Where You Came From Live' airs over three consecutive nights, October 2 – 4, 8.30pm, LIVE on SBS Australia and streaming live at SBS On Demand. 

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