SSI News Blog

Through the generosity of community minded individuals and organisations, the SSI Mosaic Gala raised a record  $50,000 to support refugees on the pathway to employment and education.

Guests celebrating 2019 Mosaic Gala

Guests celebrating at the SSI Mosaic Gala

The Mosaic Gala is a special fundraising event that brings together community organisations individuals and businesses to celebrate what can be achieved when we value differences and empower people to reach their full potential.

This year the Gala raised record funds to support people from a refugee background through SSI’s – Ignite® Small Business Start-ups and Refugee Scholarships. These programs focus on utilising education and employment as pathways to inclusion, independence and success when settling in Australia.

These programs support people like scholarship recipient Rami Suleiman and Hedayat Osyan, who spoke at the gala about his journey to Australia and subsequent success as an entrepreneur.

Hedayat was supported by Ignite® to found a tiling company, Nick Tiling Services, which now trains, employs and supports 25 other people from refugee backgrounds. Earlier this year, he was a speaker at TEDxSydney.

Guests at the Mosaic Gala enjoyed live entertainment and cuisine from various cultures. They also heard from Australian comedian, actor and writer, Anh Do, whose unique life was the focus of an inspiring keynote that began with his family’s journey from war-torn Vietnam in the late 1970s.

Speaking on the night, SSI CEO Violet Roumeliotis said the Mosaic Gala was an opportunity to bring together businesses and individuals who share the goal of ensuring all refuges have the opportunity to live rich, fulfilling lives in Australia.

“Refugees come to Australia with hope, ambitions and a hunger to make the most of the opportunities presented to them,” she said.

“Research from UNSW shows that most of the stressful life events for refugee children relate to changing school or home, parental unemployment, marital separation and financial stress. That same research indicates that one of the ways we can minimise this stress is to support children’s education and support their parents to find and retain employment.”

If you couldn’t make the Gala, don’t worry! You can still donate and receive a tax deductible donation by making a pledge contribution to support refugee scholarships and entrepreneurs.

Click here to make a pledge

Thank you to our event sponsors: Buzz Speaker Hire, Exetel, Language Loop, Monash University, Optus, White Lion King and our major prize sponsor: Delta Airlines as well all the many prize sponsors who donated a gift for the auction. 

Success stories

Ignite helps Saman Khaladj Iranian refugee forge new career path

Saman Khaladj launched his own business with the support of the SSI Ignite Small Business Start-ups initiative. Arriving in Australia in 2013 marked the beginning of a new life and career for 49-year-old Saman Khaladj.

 

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