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Community supporting community

Maddy Ware and John King

14 Feb 2023

Duad’s experiences with careers support from The Huddle

Recruitment processes, such as resume writing and interviews, in today’s employment landscape are becoming more complex.

Young people from diverse backgrounds continue to be adversely affected by these processes, often due to a lack of exposure or access to appropriate support through their own networks. This leads to challenges in obtaining sustainable employment. Mentoring and coaching throughout the recruitment process has proven to be highly valuable to young people from diverse communities (Meet Me in the Middle Report, P.21). In today’s employment market, employers are consistently looking for transferrable skills over technical skills. They expect young people to be able to confidently speak about their transferable skills, as well as explain in what circumstances they use them.

The objective of The Huddle’s Game Changers program is to bridge the information gap between young people and employers. By providing Career Coaching on resume writing, cover letter writing and interview preparation, young people can identify their skills and confidently communicate them to an employer.

Game Changers supports young people from diverse backgrounds to not only identify skills they have acquired through their lived experiences, but also understand that they use transferable skills in everyday settings such as home life, sports, school, and work.

Daud is a 19-year-old male from North Melbourne. He had been involved with The Huddle’s Huddle Holidays and Huddle Up! programs since 2020, and was referred to Game Changers through a family member who had previously been involved in the program, suggesting the supportive structure and coaching provided in the program would be beneficial. Daud connected with the Careers Coordinator mid-2022 and, following Career Coaching sessions, expressed interest in working with The Huddle or within the community setting more broadly. The interest was due to positive experiences he had participating in programs in his local North Melbourne area.

After finalising his resume and cover letter, the Careers Coordinator suggested Daud apply for a role available with the YMCA, a partner organisation of The Huddle, at the North Melbourne Community Centre (NMCC). Daud was reluctant because he had been a participant at NMCC and was unsure of his abilities to lead people within his social circle. The Careers Coordinator and Daud had many conversations about his skills and abilities and what it would mean to work within his community and, despite being initially apprehensive, Daud had built up enough confidence in his abilities and decided to apply for a Duty Manager role.

Daud was successful in getting an interview at NMCC and took part in a number of job interview preparation sessions, answering practice interview questions and preparing examples with the Careers Coordinator. After Daud’s interview, he felt confident in how he presented himself, his transferrable skills, and his experience as a member of the North Melbourne community. Daud was successful in his application and appointed to the role of Duty Manager, beginning at NMCC in December 2022.

Through participating in Game Changers, Daud was supported to identify his talents and believe in himself, giving him the confidence needed to apply for a management position. Furthermore, Game Changers resulted in Daud having a better understanding of recruitment processes and procedures while also fostering a safe psychological environment in which Daud could learn about his abilities and successfully talk to his skillset. Daud was able to identify his skills and communicate them to an employer confidently and succinctly in an interview situation, successfully gaining employment.

Game Changers massively helped me with resumes, with cover letter writing, with interviewing skills…[and] being able to appropriately sell myself in a way.- Duad

Daud is thoroughly enjoying work at North Melbourne Community Centre and hopes to gain full-time employment in the community space in the future.

“The thing I enjoy most about working at North Melbourne Community Centre is the community atmosphere. Being part of the community myself and being able to work in the community and do my part and give back what I got, it’s a great feeling.”

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