On Day 2 of the LINK hui, about 40 participants took part in a full-day of facilitated co-design workshops. Participants worked in six small groups to come up with some ideas to tackle the two themes for the day: “Securing meaningful employment and business opportunities’ and ‘Establishing social connections and cohesion in Aotearoa’. At the end of the day, each group pitched their ideas to judges.
For each of the six ideas, a panel of four judges considered its: feasibility, impact, and desirability. They came close but one stood out: “The Loop” (Working name).
This is an initiative to use social media (Instagram) to profile and promote successful local businesses or projects by people with a refugee background. Those profiled would then need to give back to their community by mentoring someone from the former-refugee background. The initiative aims to shift the narrative surrounding the emerging communities from one of challenges to opportunities; one of loss to success; and in particular one that is told from the perspective of the successful New Kiwi. The winning idea will receive support to get it off the ground.
The initiative is led and fronted by former-refugees with others in advisory roles. The group commits to update the Tribe at least every 3 months and will give an update during the following year’s LINK hui.
Other ideas were brilliant and included a well-being toolkit for health professionals working with former refugees, a one-stop shop online resettlement support platform, a start-your-own business hub, and a guide to New Zealand life including a written A-Z how-to and organised seminars by established former-refugees to give hope to new arrivals still in Mangere reception centre. Some of these projects are also being progressed, independently, and updates will be given at the 2020 LINK hui.
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