The Calvary Refugee Mentoring Program (RMP) is up and running again. The program has previously proved very valuable for asylum seekers and refugees who need to build some confidence and familiarity with work environments in Australia and has been very useful in preparing them for successfully seeking employment.
The program aims to :
- Provide individuals from a refugee/asylum seeker background with a positive and individualised workplace related experience, so that they might be better prepared for career, study or community participation.
- Provide participants with an opportunity to gain an insight into a field of work that is of interest to them or to become familiar with their area of expertise in an Australian workplace context
- Enhance the participant’s self-esteem, assisting them to build confidence and to establish and foster new connections within the Canberra community
- Give the participant an opportunity to practice and improve communication skills
RMP has a ‘hands off’ approach and participants gain knowledge by observing and shadowing a mentor.
Calvary’s RMP does not guarantee employment to participants and there is no financial benefit to the participants or the mentors.
The program usually runs for 12 weeks and is designed to be flexible. It is not a full-time program
Typically participants spend between 3-6 hours a week on placement, over 1-2 days.
Martha, who is originally from Zimbabwe, was a mentor with a previous program in 2020. Martha said:
“l love that by giving two or three hours of my time each week, l can make a difference in someone’s life. l can be the difference between them giving up on their dream or persevering with it,”
As a mentor, Martha helped participants with communication, work experience and life skills. She also helped them network and build business relationships. Her time with participants was also used to listen, provide support and share stories together.