Participants in the initiative with Assistant Minister Seselja cuttingthe ribbon, SSI Employment Manager Terry Wilson (left) and recently arrived refugee Safwan Aldod (right).
A SOCIAL enterprise project to provide refugee job seekers with practical training for career pathways into food, commercial cookery, hospitality and retail, has been launched in Campsie.
Assistant Minister for Social Services and Multicultural Affairs, Senator Zed Seselja, launched Settlement Services International's (SSI) Food for Thought on Friday.
Food for Thought is a food truck that has been custom built to provide refugee job seekers with a hands on, practical training ground.
"The biggest challenge for refugees to gain work is the lack of local work experience and referees," CEO Violet Roumeliotis said.
"We want to harness people's passion for food and culture and provide a safe and supportive training ground for refugees to build their skills, confidence and gain valuable work experience so they are job ready and familiar with the expectations of working in an Australian environment."
Already SSI has supported over 1,500 people who have gained work experience through a range of simulated learning environments over the last 12 months.
"The food truck provides a portable platform to showcase and demonstrate the skills, capabilities and employability of refugees and migrants, across the state directly to potential employers and businesses and will help build social cohesion by celebrating our diversity," Ms Roumeliotis said.
The food truck will start by featuring cuisines from Syria, Iraq, Iran, Lebanon, India, Armenia, Palestine, Pakistan, Burma, Tibet and Sri Lanka.
Minister Seselja said the Federal Government's investment in the Career Pathways Pilot, recognises that new arrivals represent an untapped economic potential to the Australian labour market.