SSI News Blog

SSI has come a long way as an organisation since, April 2011 when we had just one staff member. Just how rapidly the organisation had grown and developed was very clear on July 1, when we officially began work in three new contract areas.


SSI General Manager Peter Zographakis. 

SSI can now say, with some pride, that it is an employment services provider after its Australian Government-funded jobactive contract came in to operation at the start of the 2015-2016 financial year.

Also in the sphere of employment and business creation is SSI’s new partnership with Social Enterprises Sydney, which will see both organisations expand their existing social enterprises initiatives.

The third big development for SSI this month was the official announcement that it would lead a consortium of 22 not-for-profit organisations to deliver the Settlement Support Program (SSP) to migrants, refugees and humanitarian entrants across NSW.

All of these new developments represent big opportunities for SSI staff and the people we work hard to support.   

The SSP will deliver core settlement support for eligible people in the first five years of their arrival in Australia. It focuses on activities to assist people to become self-reliant and to participate equitably and reach their potential in Australia.

As mentioned, SSI is the lead organisation in a 22-member consortium called the NSW Settlement Partnership (NSP). The partnership comprises SSI’s 11-member Migrant Resource Centres and multicultural services and 10 organisations based around the state, including rural areas.

You can read more about the SSP and NSP on SSI’s website, here

The partnership between SSI and Social Enterprises Sydney (SES) is another great relationship that will allow both organisations to further their support for people starting businesses that have social and community-oriented outcomes.    

SSI agreed to acquire the assets and intellectual property of SES following the conclusion of its three year funding period. This has added significant capacity to SSI’s existing social enterprise initiative — Ignite Small Business Start-ups — which facilitates business creation for refugees.

This partnership is also recognition that the two organisations share a common culture and principles based on supporting people and communities to grow capacity and solve problems.

There is more about this new venture on SSI’s website, here. And look out for more about this initiative in the future.

Now to SSI’s new employment services, which is an area the organisation has worked towards for some time. SSI now delivers the Australian Government’s jobactive services to job seekers living within the Sydney East Metro region. A list of suburbs included in that region can be found here (link).

This is particularly exciting because, as well as providing employment services to the general public,  SSI can now achieve greater service integration to meet the needs of existing clients from refugee backgrounds and who are seeking asylum.

Employment can be a life-changing milestone, especially for those who have come from vulnerable positions in life. Everyone at SSI is proud to be able to work in this area.

The future looks bright for SSI and its clients. Stay tuned for more developments in the near future.

Thanks and regards,

Peter Zographakis
SSI General Manager 

Success stories

Refugee turned citizen feels privileged to have a say

Paz Roman smiling to camera.At 17, Paz Roman was nominated as Young Australian of the Year, mostly for her volunteer work. Ironically, she wasn’t an Australian. She came here from Chile as a refugee with her family when she was just a baby, and despite living in Australia since then, she struggled with the idea of becoming a citizen.  

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