Responding to Youth Unemployment in Refugee, Migrant and Indigenous Communities
Ms Tamara Stewart-Jones, CEO of Multicultural Youth SA will be at this year’s National Employment Solutions Conference this November, presenting “Responding to youth unemployment in refugee, migrant and Indigenous communities”.
This presentation will discuss the development and implementation of a not-for-profit event management company designed to respond to the needs of unemployed young people from refugee, migrant and Indigenous backgrounds.
Representing a cross sector partnership between the community, business and academic sectors, this social venture has an exclusive focus on youth with high and complex needs including homelessness, early school leaving, family breakdown, youth offending, early parenthood, social, behavioural and mental health problems, drug and alcohol abuse and low community engagement.
When support is provided to youth with high and complex needs, it generally takes the form of job readiness training such as orientation to the employment system and workplace, indvidual capacity building, employment maintenance skills, and personal and social skills coaching. Preparing young people for employment is an important but not a sufficient response to high unemployment. Young people need jobs. Thus rather than just preparing young people for employment, the project sought to become an employer.
Young people involved in this social venture are receiving paid employment as well as hands-on training, work experience, networks, references and a range of transferable social, interpersonal, practical and job-ready skills. Unlike many other social ventures which focus on manual labour skills such as cleaning and gardening, this project focuses on hospitality and event management skills. The project is not only a new initiative but it has something unique to offer, both as a social venture and as a business. There is nothing else like it in South Australia.
The presentation will discuss how a traditional not-for-profit organisation seeking to respond to high youth unemployment through a social venture leveraged its skills, networks and partnerships to respond to a pressing social issue. Also discussed are the key challenges, outcomes and learnings of the project to date.
The 2017 National Employment Solutions Conference will be held at Mantra Legends on the Gold Coast from Thursday the 16th to Friday the 17th of November 2017. It will be a platform for policy makers, academics, employers, human resource managers, recruitment services, association and “not-for-profit” representatives.