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SisterWorks Employment Pathways Program

SisterWorks Inc.

Supported beneficiary groups within Women & Girls
Age Demographic
Adults - aged 25 to under 65
Project Focus
Project Area

Project Description

Research commissioned by SisterWorks identified a lack of partnerships between not-for-profits and businesses as a ‘missing piece of the broader puzzle’ of migrant, refugee and asylum seeker employment. To bridge these gaps, SisterWorks is implementing a dedicated partnerships and careers support approach to simultaneously work at an individual level with Sisters to address barriers to economic participation whilst also focusing on partnerships with social enterprises and businesses that offer paid employment opportunities.

This work will be led by the Partnerships Manager, who will look into opportunities to expand our pre-employment workshops to further sectors that are supportive of migrant and refugee women, taking into consideration the interests and skill sets of Sisters, as well as growth sectors in Victoria. A Careers and Recruitment Manager will provide individualised support to Sisters to identify their career aspirations and address the individual barriers to employment for each woman. This position will have a recruitment background with expertise in supporting people from CALD backgrounds and applying a gendered lens. Working closely with the Partnerships Manager and in partnership with external providers will provide an end-to-end approach to support Sisters in seeking and gaining employment.

Expected Outcomes

This new approach builds on our successful Pathways Programs. These programs are dedicated to pre-employment training and support and were developed as part of our Second Chance Education partnership with UN Women. Our Pathways Programs have successfully accomplished aims of not only increasing access and benefit of high quality educational content and learning pathways, but also translating this into increased employment, livelihood and entrepreneurial opportunities.

Outcomes with this model are proven and programs are successful in supporting and creating employment pathways. This program will contribute to the following outcomes:

  • Sisters demonstrate a better understanding of the Australian workplace and Australian work ethics.
  • Sisters report they feel better prepared for future employment.
  • Sisters say their confidence has increased as a result of being part of the program.
  • Sisters who are interested are provided opportunities to apply for jobs or further training and feel confident to do so.

Project Data & Lessons

SisterWorks is currently developing and implementing a Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning (MEL) framework across the organisation to ensure that the results and impact of our work are effectively captured and measured. This new approach will be supported by the MEL framework to assess the effectiveness of improving employment outcomes for the Sisters we support.

Project Dates

Project Commences: July 1, 2021
Project Completes: June 30, 2022

Funding Details

Funding Needed
Current Funding
Total Project Costs
Approved Tax Deductability Status
Approved Tax Concession Charity
Other Funding Sources
Other Support Opportunities
In-kind contributions, Pro bono services, Subsidies

Organisation Details

SisterWorks Inc.
ABN: 92 370 950 371


Sarah Ireland
Phone: 0478126461

About SisterWorks Inc.

Through work and entrepreneurship, our mission is to support women who are refugees, asylum seekers or migrants to improve their confidence, mental wellbeing, sense of belonging and economic outlook. During eight years of operation, SisterWorks has supported over 1,000 Sisters (women who access our programs and services) from more than 50 countries on their journey to financial security and community connection. In the current year we have 432 Sisters participating in workshops and classes and we are continuing to expand with fixed service locations in Richmond, Bendigo and Dandenong, and mobile hubs that currently service metropolitan Melbourne, with plans to expand into regional Victoria. Alongside this, our e-Hub provides access to SisterWorks programs via remote learning and has been instrumental in supporting Sisters throughout the pandemic. SisterWorks’ structured training program offers pathways from training through to employment with external businesses. Our programs start from the basics and ensure women have fundamental knowledge and skills needed to find employment and understand the Australian workplace. We also work hand-in-hand with business and employers to build employment pathways and partnerships. We know that ‘work empowers women’ and therefore SisterWorks programs are designed to ensure that Sisters have the network and support system to aid them into future employment pathways.

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