Allianz and SSI offer new program for young refugees

Allianz and SSI offer new program for young refugees | Insurance Business Australia

Allianz and SSI offer new program for young refugees
Settlement Services International (SSI) and Allianz Australia have partnered to launch a new program that will help young refugees gain access to job opportunities.

The Allianz Ladder program includes a series of workshops and mentoring sessions that will help the refugee youth who have exited compulsory education get familiar with business environments, acquire basic business skills, and gain the confidence they need to secure their first job in Australia. 

The program will be delivered in a simulated learning environment, called the Experience Center, to help the participants experience a realistic business environment.

“At Allianz we are committed to social inclusion, and tackling refugee employment is an important part of this,” said Charis Martin-Ross, Allianz diversity and sustainability manager. “This has only been possible through close partnership with SSI, given their deep expertise in addressing barriers to employment for refugees and migrants.”

 “Finding employment is often the primary goal for refugees of working age, but due to barriers – including the need to professionally retrain and lack of English language proficiency – many face occupational skidding and welfare dependency,” SSI CEO Violet Roumeliotis said. This situation is compounded for young refugees who, through major life disruption, may not have completed formal education or gained work experience.”

Martin-Ross said building a culturally diverse workforce makes good business sense for companies.

“Australia is a multicultural nation: four out of five people were born overseas or have a parent born overseas. In this regard, understanding and responding to the needs of our culturally diverse customers is vital,” she said.

The initiative follows the partnership's Sustainability Employment Program, which was set up last year and has provided 15 refugees with tailored development and career management plans, leading to permanent employment.

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