2018 City East Mentor Program Networking Night

City East Mentor Program Networking Night

The 2018 City East Mentor Program Networking Night - “New Beginnings” - was held on Thursday 1st November. Our Mentor Program supports skilled migrants and refugees seeking professional employment by matching them up with volunteer mentors from the Australian workplace. It encourages social inclusion, creates employment pathways and eases the job-seekers' transition into life and work in Australia.

Supported by Waverley Council, the Networking Night provided a fantastic opportunity for participants to create new connections, share knowledge, discuss job-seeking strategies and exchange stories and experiences. Over 100 people shared the evening including our mentors and mentees, project partners and the City East College team.

There was an overwhelming feeling of positivity and support in the room with mentor Lauren Keogh echoing this sentiment on the night, “I am so encouraged and blown away to see the community that has been created,” she said. "I see mentees that have been part of the program for one or two years, in stable employment, feeling connected, proud and humbled. They have found somewhere that feels like home, somewhere they will always recall as a place that changed their lives."

The Mentor Program is designed to be mutually beneficial, and aims to address the very real issue of ‘brain waste’, where far too many highly-skilled and qualified people are not reaching their full potential in our society. Councillor Paula Masselos from Waverley Council, highlighted this point: “Economic participation is an important component of social inclusion, and building cohesive and resilient communities. Congratulations to the participants of the program, who are taking the opportunity to connect with and learn from mentors and seek employment that matches their valuable skills and experience. Thank you to the volunteer mentors who are providing the support to the program,” she said.

Two of the mentees, Dalia and Jun, who have now achieved professional employment, spoke about their job-seeking journey and expressed gratitude to their mentors, Tahereh and Willa, for supporting them through this challenging period. “I will always have you and City East in my heart no matter where I go, and no matter what I achieve, as it is where I started, and it is what I call the home of my career,” said Jun.

For more information on the City East Mentor Program please contact Margaret Teed on 9387 7400 or at margaret@cec.edu.au