2019 Round 2 Top 6 Finalist

The Social Studio

Empowering refugee youth to re-build their lives and create secure futures.

The Social Studio empowers refugee communities by providing a nationally recognised qualification, the opportunity to gain experience and employment, develop new skills, gain access to additional support and programs, and find a sense of wellbeing and community connectedness as an active and contributing member of the community.

Our dream is to help empower refugee youth with the skills, experience, qualifications and confidence to create safe and economically secure futures for themselves and their families as they re-build their lives in Australia.

Operating since 2009, The Social Studio:

  • has provided education opportunities to over 680 people from refugee or migrant backgrounds,
  • has seen a 90% retention rate in Certificate III and Certificate IV training courses,
  • helped 65% of participants transition to employment, and
  • continues to celebrate the creativity, skills and culture of young people from diverse backgrounds.

Fashion Futures is a new initiative from The Social Studio that will provide supported scholarships to support refugee youth to undertake an 18 month Certificate III in Clothing Production at The Social Studio. The Social Studio’s teaching staff and management team will design an individualised training and mentoring program aimed at achieving employment aligned with the recipient's area of interest on successful completion of the course. 

When settling in Australia, people from refugee backgrounds have been found to face significant barriers to securing and maintaining long term, meaningful employment. These barriers are even higher for young people, many of whom have experienced disrupted schooling, displacement and trauma. Despite these barriers, refugee youth have incredible skills and talents.

The Social Studio’s early intervention and wrap-around support model responds directly to the barriers faced by refugee youth by providing:

  • English language support
  • Work-readiness workshops (CV and interview preparation)
  • Assistance sourcing work experience, internship and employment opportunities in student’s chosen field
  • Skill enrichment workshops
  • Opportunities for students to participate in industry events
  • Regular one-on-one meetings with a TSS’ Youth Coordinator to ensure students are supported and on track to achieve their goals

More broadly, the early intervention nature of The Social Studio’s programs helps the community by aiming to reduce disengagement, the risk of offending, and mental and physical health problems for this community. With a lack of confidence and motivation making it hard for this group to engage in services and programs, The Social Studio has seen firsthand how highly engaging creative activities serve as a pathway into education and employment. ‘Fashion Futures’ harnesses these talents through engaging young people in creative pathways to education and employment, using the vehicle of a fashion based social enterprise.

We dream of a world where diversity is celebrated. Where every new Australian is welcomed, supported with pathways to education and employment, and empowered to build new lives for themselves as they settle in Australia. A Sunsuper Dreams for a Better World grant will help launch our ‘Fashion Futures’ program and support more new Australians into long-term and meaningful employment. 

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The Social Studio

Empowering refugee youth to re-build their lives and create secure futures.

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