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.
From a staff of one in April 2011, SSI now employs over 800 employees (including 180 bilingual guides) and over 350 volunteers. In 2018, SSI merged with Access Community Services. We now operate locally, nationally and internationally, with offices in metro and regional Queensland, NSW and Victoria.
Refugees and people seeking asylum
SSI provides support and assistance to the majority of people in NSW on refugee and bridging visas.
The organisation values difference and the right to self-determination for the people we support, as well as meaningful social and economic inclusion in Australian society.
Some of SSI's services are delivered at the local level with staff co-located at the offices of member Migrant Resource Centres.
SSI Foster Care
SSI works with young people and parents from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds (CALD), as well as families with an early intervention focus. As at October 2018, SSI Foster Care had provided care and support for 330 children from 76 different cultural backgrounds.
Ability Links NSW
Since July 2014, SSI has delivered the Ability Links NSW service to people with disability in NSW, in partnership with Uniting Care and St Vincent De Paul Society NSW. In its first 12 months, Ability Links NSW gave support to 4,543 people; 63 per cent of whom identified as being from diverse cultural backgrounds.
CoAct/SSI jobactive employment services
In July 2015, SSI launched its employment services program through CoAct/SSI jobactive. This program delivers the Australian Government’s jobactive services to job seekers living within the Sydney East Metro region.
SSI is also the lead partner of a consortium called the NSW Settlement Partnership (NSP), which comprises 22 organisations. The NSP partners include SSI’s 11 member organisations and 10 organisations based around the state, including rural areas.
The NSP partnership delivers settlement services across most of NSW, under the Department of Social Services’ Settlement Services Program (SSP).The SSP delivers core settlement support for humanitarian entrants and migrants in their first five years in Australia.
The organisation’s 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 to reach their potential. Formed in 2000, SSI is also the state-wide umbrella organisation for 11 Migrant Resource Centres and Multicultural Services across NSW.
Our predominantly bilingual and cross-cultural workforce, which can speak 98 languages, enables us to overcome many cultural and language barriers that can inhibit access and good service delivery.
With its head office located in Ashfield, Sydney, SSI’s services are delivered from offices strategically located around NSW and Victoria, and from the placement of case managers, bilingual workers and volunteers at Migrant Resource Centres in NSW.