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Refugee Support

The Humanitarian Settlement Program provides essential early support and information to refugees and humanitarian entrants. Learn more


IgniteAbility Small Business Start-ups is a pilot program established to facilitate business creation for people with disability. Learn More:

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Local Area Coordination

SSI is partnered with the National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) to support people aged 7 and over to access the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) and other mainstream community services. Learn more

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SSI Employment

Employment is integral for newly arrived refugees, migrants, asylum seekers and for other vulnerable people in our community. Learn more

SSI News Blog


An NDIS workforce for our diverse community - CultureReady online workshops

Thanks to the Department of Social Services for funding the CultureReady project. In a 16 month period we delivered a total of 240 workshops to 3,158 participants. We partnered with a variety of disability services all over Australia to deliver 79 in-house training sessions to their staff. 

Whilst the training funding has ceased, the good news is the workshops can still be accessed on request for your organisation through SSI Diversity Training who led CultureReady.  For a conversation with one of the team please contact us at:

Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 

Phone: 02 8799 6700

For further information about the variety of workshops on offer, visit our SSI Diversity Training webpage


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Recruiting and retaining a diverse workforce

This workshop explores key areas to consider at the organisational, team and individual level when building a diverse and inclusive workforce.

It is well-documented that diversity brings multiple benefits at a number of different levels for an organisation. Having a culturally diverse workforce attracts specific skills, knowledge and new perspectives, builds connection and trust with communities, and draws service users from CALD backgrounds. The NDIS Cultural and Linguistic Diversity Strategy 2018 highlights that having a diverse workforce is an effective strategy to help organisations respond to the needs of people from culturally diverse backgrounds.

To attract and retain CALD workers, organisations need to look beyond the traditional recruitment channels and consciously adopt targeted and flexible approaches as well as build supportive and inclusive workplaces.

Learning outcomes

At completion of this training participants will be able to:

  • Understand the strengths and benefits of cultural diversity in the workplace
  • Identify some of the barriers faced by CALD people when applying for work
  • Recruit purposefully by considering your business needs, the skills and strengths you want to attract, and the needs of CALD communities
  • Identify a variety of recruitment strategies to attract CALD workers
  • Identify practices to support and retain CALD workers

Target audience

This workshop is designed for people that work in the area of human resources or are involved in recruitment practices.

Engaging CALD communities

This workshop will assist you in planning and implementing an engagement process for the communities you work with.

A key reason why CALD communities do not access disability services at the same rate as the broader population is that they are often not aware of the services that exist or what their entitlements are under the NDIS. Service providers therefore cannot rely on people from culturally diverse backgrounds walking through the door, but instead need to have targeted strategies in order to engage and build relationships with CALD communities.

This workshop will look at strategies for capacity building with a particular focus on enablers to enhance service accessibility and minimise barriers experienced by CALD individuals and families.

Learning outcomes

At completion of this training participants will be able to:

  • Identify the cultural diversity in their service catchment area
  • Understand common barriers to engaging CALD communities
  • Implement effective strategies to improve access and use of disability services for CALD communities
  • Understand the available assets, resources and access points to better connect with and support culturally diverse communities

Target audience

This workshop is designed for NDIS service provider staff including frontline workers, team leaders and managers.

Working with language services

This workshop will assist you to work effectively with language services and build skills and confidence in knowing when and how to use interpreters.

We live in a vibrant multicultural community, with one in four Australians born overseas. The available evidence indicates that people from CALD backgrounds have rates of disability similar to the rest of the Australian population.

This half-day workshop will assist participants to utilise the skills of a professional interpreter in order to effectively engage and communicate with linguistically diverse communities and create more culturally responsive and inclusive workplaces.

Ensuring services are accessible to people from diverse linguistic backgrounds is a key priority area of the NDIS Cultural and Linguistic Diversity Strategy 2018.

The workshop will provide useful tips and practice considerations covering a broad range of issues such as understanding the availability of interpreting services under the NDIS; how to evaluate the need for an interpreter; how to prepare for, and debrief after an interpreting session; identifying common barriers to good communication and understanding the roles of the various parties during the interpreting session; and including the professional interpreter, the service provider and the consumer.

Learning outcomes

At completion of this training participants will be able to:

  • Understand the benefits of using a professional interpreter
  • Assess when and in what situations to use a professional interpreter
  • Feel more confident when using a professional interpreter
  • Explore knowledge and skills needed when working with a professional interpreter
  • Discuss different practice implications when working with children and when using Auslan interpreters
  • Identify the impact that refugee experience and trauma may have on a person in an interpreting situation

Target audience

This workshop is designed for NDIS disability service provider workers including frontline workers and supervisors who work directly with or provide services to individuals and families from linguistically diverse backgrounds.

Fundamentals of culturally responsive practice in the disability context

This workshop explores the role of cultural beliefs and values, unconscious bias and different cultural explanatory models of disability when working with participants and colleagues.

People from CALD backgrounds experience multiple barriers when accessing disability services. Culturally responsive practice training is a reflective process which will help participants gain an insight into their own culture, behaviours and organisational practices to make their services more accessible and avoid creating service related barriers.

This one-day workshop will build participants' capability to be more responsive and confident when working with culturally diverse individuals and families. It will help participants gain a better understanding of how other people’s culture informs their world view and therefore their understanding of disability and the service system. It will assist participants to communicate effectively, build trust and provide quality services to CALD service users.

Learning outcomes

At the completion of this training participants will be able to:

  • Reflect on their own cultural identities, beliefs and values
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the intersection of living with a disability and coming from a culturally and linguistically diverse background
  • Recognise different explanatory models
  • Identify the impact of refugee experiences on a person living with a disability and their families
  • Incorporate person centred principles with a trauma-informed approach and culturally responsive practice

Target audience

This workshop is designed for all NDIS workers from reception staff to service staff and management.

Quality services and support

SSI is a community organisation and social business that supports newcomers and other Australians to achieve their full potential. We work with all people who have experienced vulnerability, including refugees, people seeking asylum and culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) communities, to build capacity and enable them to overcome inequality.

SSI draws on its expertise and experience to advocate for the people and communities it serves. Through the work we do, we empower people to change their lives. Through our advocacy and representation, we influence ideas and policy.

Our vision is to achieve a society that values the diversity of its people and actively provides support to ensure meaningful social and economic participation and to assist individuals and families reach their potential.