Employment is integral in the settlement journey for newly arrived refugees, migrants and asylum seekers and for other vulnerable people in our community. It provides a valuable pathway to achieving independence.

Two young men and two young women sitting on a bench.

We present employment information during orientation that all refugees participate in on arrival. New arrivals are also encouraged to find volunteer opportunities to help them gain local experience, practise English skills, and meet people in the community and expand their networks and contacts.

As a FIVE STAR* jobactive provider and through existing relationships and partnerships with employers and job-ready programs, social enterprises and workshops, SSI supports job seekers to acquire new skills and to find and maintain a job.

SSI also works closely with employers to source the right person to meet employers’ business needs. This includes screening resumes, developing interview skills, undertaking pre-employment suitability checks and providing post-employment support.

At any given time, SSI provides employment support for about 5,000 people of refugee background and those seeking asylum through our humanitarian services, as well as helping another 200 long-term unemployed people who participate in the Federal Government-funded jobactive service.

We support job seekers who have a diverse range of skills and qualifications, and cultural and linguistic backgrounds, giving employers the opportunity to add diversity to their workplace.


As a member of CoAct**, SSI delivers the Australian Government’s jobactive** service to job seekers living within the Sydney East Metro region.

SSI works with employers to promote workforce participation and ensure they are receiving job seekers who meet their business needs, through candidate screening, wage subsidies and work preparation training and equipment.

Critical to SSI’s success in delivering jobactive is the range of social enterprises that have been developed to provide job seekers with hands-on work experience as well as the broader life skills that help job seekers to find and keep a job

Opportunity Pathways

SSI is the provider of the Opportunity Pathways program for Western Sydney.

The program is aimed at people who want to improve their employment options and who are:

  • aged 17 and older and meet the school leaving requirements; and
  • living in public, community or Aboriginal housing or are approved social housing applicants on the NSW Housing Register; or
  • are receiving a Rent Choice subsidy.

Through this program, SSI connects participants to education, training and employment opportunities tailored to their needs, aspirations and capabilities. SSI identifies the strengths, skills and aspirations of each participant, and matches these to job categories and relevant courses that are likely to lead to job opportunities.

SSI uses its innovative and person-centred social enterprise approach to address barriers to employment, providing participants with meaningful work experience, skills, confidence, and access to sustainable employment. (Please note, work experience is temporarily unavailable due to the COVID-19 pandemic).

SSI delivers Opportunity Pathways in collaboration with the well-established partnerships it has with other specialist services, employers and local supports as needed.

SSI provides Opportunity Pathways services across sites in Parramatta, Mount Druitt, Auburn, Merrylands and Blacktown. To contact us, refer a participant, or self-refer, please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or fill in our contact form.



ParentsNext is an Australian Government initiative to help parents prepare for employment by the time their youngest child reaches school age.
Together with Metro Assist, SSI delivers ParentsNext in the Bankstown local government area.

ParentsNext: more information


Social Enterprises

The Staples Bag

The Staples Bag is a retail store from where pantry items are sold at discounted prices to help address the growing issue of people living below the poverty line. Products can be bought pre-packaged at set prices as food hampers or individually. The Staples Bag also operates pop up stores at retirement villages, social housing estates and University districts throughout Greater Sydney. Job seekers gain work experience and skills in warehousing, packing, marketing and retail. 


For more information contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Humble Creatives

Humble Creatives is a handmade scented candles enterprise, where each candle is mixed and hand-poured using 100% Australian soy wax, cotton-core wicks and fine fragrance oils. Calico draw string bags in which the candles are sold are also sewn and screen printed onsite by job seekers. Humble Creatives gives participants skills to work in a commercial production and retail environment.

Humble Creatives

pdfHumble Creatives Flyer

For more information contact: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Contact us

For more information about SSI recruitment services, social enterprises or jobactive please contact:

e: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
t: (02) 9784 2400

All these programs are funded by the Australian Government Department of Employment.

*SSI’s jobactive service was awarded an overall and individual Stream Five Star Rating in August 2016 from the Department of Employment. The Star Ratings assess the performance of jobactive employment providers against the key performance indicators of efficiency and effectiveness in placing job seekers into sustainable work.

A five Star Rating means that SSI is performing 30%, or more, better than the national average of jobactive providers - a real confidence boost for the job seekers and employers that SSI is working with.

**SSI is a member of CoAct: a national network of locally embedded community service providers working together to create social and economic opportunities for Australia’s disadvantaged.