When 22-year-old Esmaeil Safi moved from Iran to Canberra with his family 14 months ago, it was more difficult than he had imagined.
Esmaeil needed to learn a new language, find new friends and employment.
Like many young Australians looking for their first job, he faced an uncertain economy and an ACT youth unemployment rate four points higher than that of the general population.
Fortunately, The Salvation Army Employment Plus consultant Taylor Cannell stepped in to provide Esmaeil support, training and opportunity.
Beginning with a hospitality certificate, Esmaeil gained enough confidence to enter a four-week internship at Domino’s Pizza, which then led to a permanent part-time job.
He is now learning all aspects of the business (his favourite is making the dough) and practising his new language skills in his customer service.
Esmaeil is one of several young people to find meaningful employment at Domino’s through the PaTH internship program funded by the Commonwealth Government and facilitated by Employment Plus senior recruiter, Ciaran Keating, and Domino’s franchise owner, Chad Cable.
“It was a bit scary,” Esmaeil said. “I was nervous because of my English.
“But he (Ciaran) called me and pushed me and I’m so grateful because of that.”
Chad and Ciaran’s combined passion for finding young people meaningful work met an increased need for food delivery services during the pandemic to deliver much-needed jobs.
Ciaran said PaTH internships were a great way for a candidate to really see what’s involved in a job, build their confidence and for both the job seeker and the employer to see if they are a good fit.
Esmaeil is ambitious and while committed to Domino’s in medium term as he hones his skills and saves money for a coffee machine, he is thinking about his next step.
When he is ready to take it, he will have the wisdom of the experience of his boss Chad, who himself began as a casual employee of Domino’s at 16 years of age, and is now in a partnership involving seven Domino’s franchises.
Chad said the internships are a great opportunity for people who haven’t had a job.
“For some it didn’t work out and that helped them have their lightbulb moment, and think ‘what do I actually need to do to succeed’,” Chad said.
“And it’s not fun succeeding on your own; you need to have a team and share the success. We try and bring people in so we can see other people succeed and get something out of it as well.”