Learning and growth – deep dive

Ongoing education and self-development can assist individuals to participate and contribute to the society in which they live. As well as providing the skills needed to join the workforce, learning provides an opportunity to grow as a person and to gain confidence, self-esteem and agency. The ongoing education of staff and knowledge transfer across SSI enables our teams to leverage skills to better serve the needs of clients – and to problem solve more optimally.

Our expected interim outcomes in this area are to support people to understand and navigate educational and training pathways. We aim to improve language, literacy and other skills that are important for job readiness, and to help people gain recognition for their existing skills and qualifications to enable economic participation through employment. 


In the longer term, we aim to help people attain the highest possible standard of knowledge and skills to make informed choices based on their needs and aspirations, and to help people develop active citizenship and an understanding of their rights and responsibilities. SSI works with communities to facilitate inclusion and enable access to economic and social opportunities for people with disability.


This may include involvement in community events, and partnerships with businesses to support them in becoming more inclusive.


Below are examples of programs that contribute to Learning and Growth outcomes for our clients. Each program may also contribute to one or more of our other delivery outcomes.


Refugee Employment Services Program

The Refugee Employment Support Program (RESP) is a four-year initiative by the NSW Government and delivered by SSI that addresses the challenges experienced by refugees and people seeking asylum in finding suitable and skilled employment opportunities. The program is focused on community-based solutions to employment through the involvement of local employers, organisations and other non-government organisations to connect eligible refugees and people seeking asylum with training, support and jobs.

In FY2020, RESP supported more than 600 participants in overcoming education barriers and supported more than 1,000 participants to achieve employment. RESP also supported 941 participants to have their overseas qualifications recognised in Australia. 7,431 participants were supported over the past three years and 2,737 employment outcomes achieved in the same period.


Mental Health Services in Queensland


The implementation of stage three COVID-19 restrictions in Queensland highlighted the need to for more extensive training around managing mental health crises and suicide prevention. Access’ Harmony Place Psychology Clinic delivered training across the organisation to frontline staff in small group settings to develop and equip staff to manage challenging situations. The training positioned staff well to deal with a significant upsurge in demand for NDIS services during the year.


Settlement Engagement and Transition Support

The Settlement Engagement and Transition Support (SETS) program aims to equip and empower humanitarian entrants, other eligible permanent migrants and their communities to address their settlement needs. The goal is improving social participation, economic wellbeing, independence, personal wellbeing and community connectedness. The program fills an important gap in the post-arrival period for eligible clients who do not have family and other community supports to rely on. The program is complementary to the Humanitarian Settlement Program (HSP) and other Commonwealth support to humanitarian entrants and for other vulnerable migrants. SETS is delivered by the NSW Settlement Partnership, a consortium of community organisations led by SSI.

See page 35.


Through the Settlement Engagement and Transition Support (SETS) Client Services program, 1,406 clients were assisted through case management and community education groups. Additionally, 10,471 individual support sessions were delivered across social services programs in FY2020. Some 915 group sessions were delivered across Social Services programs from July 2019 - June 2020.


Community Hubs Programs in NSW and Queensland

Located in primary and state schools and a number of community organisations, Community Hubs support migrant and refugee parents and children to navigate the education system, build parenting and family capacity, and promote links between those families and local services and networks. SSI is the designated Support Agency for Community Hubs in Sydney, where Hubs are located across five local government areas. Access operates Hubs in Ipswich and Logan. In FY2020, SSI enabled 833 children to participate in Community Hubs and supported 673 carers. 


During FY2020’s COVID-19 restrictions, we helped deliver Hub services via an online resource, allowing families to continue to connect, share and learn.



  • 600+ participants overcame education barriers;

  • 1,000+ participants achieved employment;

  • 146 clients felt they had overcome language barriers;

  • 754 participants achieved Ability Links outcomes;

  • 941 clients achieved recognition of overseas skills
    and qualifications;

  • 26 Access RTO clients reported improved job
    outcomes after training;

  • 1,406 clients were assisted through case
    management and community education groups as
    part of Access’ Settlement Engagement and Transition Support (SETS) program;

  • 10,471 individual support sessions and 915 group sessions were delivered across Access’ social services programs.