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Multicultural Economic participation forum -"Tasmania is on the threshold of opportunities"Jade Li

Tasmania continues to attract talented people who are passionate about future of our state. No jobs in Tasmania has become a common perception for many migrants moving from overseas and from interstate. To address some of these issues and shed light on local economy a recent migrant to state Jade Li has taken a huge task to organise MEPF (Multicultural Economic participation forum). Diverse Tassie team member met with Jade Li a passionate and vibrant personality to hear more about the project.


( Jade Li - Project Manager MEPF & Raj Chopra -Diverse Tassie )


Tell us a bit about your background and how did you decide to settle in Tasmania?


I am a geographer, environmentalist, and journalist. I moved down south from Gold Coast with my family two years ago, when my husband got a job with University of Tasmania. I was already a multicultural community advocate before leaving Gold Coast. It was a choice of heart after working for the City of Gold Coast for a few years, during which I realised my passion in cross-cultural community projects.


How did the Idea of this project come about ? 


Soon after moving to Hobart, I noticed that many community members complained about no meaningful employment available. Many of them have multiple degrees of high education, but have to work in basic-level consumption-based businesses (i.e. open restaurants, bubble tea shops, Asian supermarkets, etc.). On the other hand, I sensed that Tasmania is on the threshold of opportunities with migrants' various intellects and government's encouraging policies. There seems to be a distinct disconnection here. So I felt the urge to bridge the gap. Since last year, I have been talking to several cultural group leaders, who shared the same feeling. So when the City of Hobart and Glenorchy opened up small community grants for post-COVID recovery initiatives, we think this is the time to take action. We were successful in applying for both grants, which enabled us to test the initiative with some pilot sessions. We hope to use the outcome of these pilot sessions to build a more sustainable platform. 


What is the core purpose of doing this project ? 


To encourage the multicultural community to proactively analyse the local economy and its job market, thinking about jobs of the future, be creative. The current employment scenario does not need to be how it should/will be. As fresh blood to the job market, migrants need to be part of the force shaping the direction of the future. 


What change or dialogue you want to see happen during and after the project is completed?


Participants will get a clearer picture of potential industries' growth, and how their skills can be applied. Also, they'll have a better understanding of various resources (e.g. gov grants, employment service providers, career trainers, business advisers, etc.) that can help them to achieve their goals. 


How does it help a new arrivals from overseas or interstate from a CALD background who recently migrated to Tasmania?


We hope this project can develop into a sustainable "First Stop" information hub for new CALD (culturally & linguistically diverse) arrivals seeking work. We would like to "join the dots" - offer comprehensive information that can point people to the right directions. 


What are the key dates and timing of events ? 


We organised the sessions into two topics. 

Topic 1: What's Out There? What are Jobs of the Future?  

Five Saturdays on Sept 5, 12, 19, 26, Oct 3, with different speakers. 

The first session on Sept 5th is in English, and the rest in other languages. 


Topic 2: Where are Existing Resources?

Five Saturdays on Oct 10, 17, 24, 31, Nov 7, with different speakers. Again, the first session on Oct 10th is in English, and the rest in other languages. 


Any other comments please feel free to share ?


The current sessions are aimed to provide an overview for employment and entrepreneurship. A bit of high-level thinking to set the scene. We plan to run more workshops in the future, which will be more industry-specific, one by one. 


Project manager - Jade Li :Multicultural Economic Participation Forum


To register check out more details on

visit their website:  www.mepftas.com

The events will have limited capacity due to Covid-19 protocols.


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