‘Anyone can build a future’: private sector heeds the call to help refugees forge way in Australia

by admin on July 13th, 2018

filed under 南京夜网

“I will start working with someone and, when I get my licence, I will have my own business”: Nader Sameer. Photo: Anna KuceraAfter fleeing the rubble-strewn streets of Baghdad, Nader Sameer is literally building the foundations of a new life, learning how to mix mortar, lay bricks and find a meaningful path in Australia.
Nanjing Night Net

Mr Sameer is one of a growing number of refugees being aided by the Australian private sector, as governments across the world say they cannot solve the global migrant crisis alone.

Just six weeks after arriving in Australia with his wife and two young children, Mr Sameer has received bricklaying training at Granville TAFE. In coming weeks he and other students will begin paid jobs with private construction companies.

Speaking to Fairfax Media through an interpreter, the 38-year-old, who lives in Fairfield, said his family’s safety was threatened in Iraq, where he worked as an electrician and builder.

“I will start working with someone and, when I get my licence, I will have my own business … to support my family and help our community,” he said.

“[Australia] is a good country and anyone can build a future in it.”

The US government last month issued a call for the private sector to contribute to global efforts to resettle refugees, saying there were more than 65 million displaced people in the world and “a crisis of this scale … requires more than government action”.

In Australia, the federal government last year announced an emergency intake of 12,000 Syrian refugees. NSW Coordinator-General for Refugee Resettlement Peter Shergold said private sector help was “crucial” in successfully resettling them.

“When refugees arrive, they want peace and security for their family, education for their children and employment for themselves and the opportunity to build family businesses,” he said.

“We have to collaborate with the business sector in order to make it work.”

A NSW refugee employment program, due to start in October, will interview refugees and connect them with suitable employers.

They include Woolworths, Australia Post, Harvey Norman, Accor Hotels, First State Super and AMP.

The bricklaying apprenticeships were made available through Settlement Services International, Austral Bricks and its training foundation, the Australian Brick and Blocklaying Training Foundation.

Allianz Australia is also employing refugees, helping them to developtheir English skills and delivering training in insurance and general business acumen.

Diversity and sustainability manager Charis Martin-Ross said the program, in conjunction with SSI, hired people who “have often lost everything and are often starting again”.

“But they bring with them a strong skill set, extensive experience, plus high levels of motivation and resilience,” she said.

The first group of new employees included three women and two men from Syria, Jordan, Lebanon and Vietnam.

At the Accord’s Swanston Hotel in central Melbourne, Burmese refugee Htun Htun has worked as a cleaner for more than two years.

He was forced to leave his village where “everyone was fighting” as part of a long-running civil war.

“I like everything, in my job …the people treat me like a father and son,” he said. “I am happy to be here, it is very good to work.”

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

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