Soni builds her confidence and gets her first job in Australia


Soni is a 52-year-old Sri-Lankan woman who arrived in Australia in 2016 on a partner visa. Since arriving in Australia, Soni had not been able to find a suitable and stable job despite strong English skills and work experience in Sri Lanka. As a result, Soni was working for cash-in-hand jobs without stable hours, income or job satisfaction.
Soni lacked the motivation and confidence to find a job in Australia after being out of work for more than five years, so much so that she was thinking of returning to Sri Lanka. Furthermore, she did not have a strong resume and had limited skills to effectively job search.

Client situation

Soni contacted South East Community Links (SECL) for assistance and she was offered employment support through the Community Employment Connector program. Her Employment Connector engaged with Soni with the aim to develop trust and a strong employment plan. This plan included building her confidence and motivation to engage with employers and look for jobs independently.


Improved job search skills

The SECL Employment Connector supported Soni to develop a strong resume, cover letter and build her capacity to apply for jobs online. They also linked Soni with a Jobs Victoria Employment Services (JVES) provider to source available jobs.

Employment advocacy
When Soni felt uncomfortable proceeding with the JVES caseworker, her Employment Connector was able to act as an intermediary to support Soni. This process made her feel comfortable about engaging with JVES services and built her confidence to conduct meetings individually in the future. The Employment Connector was also able to communicate Soni’s employment goals and action plan to the JVES provider to ensure a good client and service provider fit and facilitate a strong ongoing partnership between both programs.
Improved motivation and confidence

Soni was offered an interview at Metro Trains for a train assistance role. Soni was excited about this opportunity but lacked confidence for her first interview. Her SECL Employment Connector conducted an interview coaching session for Soni to prepare her for her first interview and build her confidence.

Employment security

Soni was thrilled to get the role – her first job in Australia. The Employment Connector built Soni’s capacity, motivation and confidence to find a job via a ‘slow and steady’ approach.

The Community Employment Connectors program is supported by the Victorian Government.