BENDIGO'S peak business body is appealing to employers to give young people of refugee backgrounds a chance to gain experience.
It comes as young people eager to enter Bendigo's hospitality industry complete a barista training program.
Be.Bendigo, Bendigo Community Health Services and Business Victoria have partnered to provide the training.
More than 10 young people have already been schooled in the art of making the perfect coffee.
Settlement case worker Nay Chee Aung said the feedback from those that had completed the training had been positive.
"As soon as they've done the course they send me a text saying they really enjoyed it, thanks so much, this is a great opportunity," he said.
"They are really looking forward to a new opportunity because of this training."
Be.Bendigo chief executive Dennis Bice said gaining experience in the industry would be the next step for those who had completed the training.
"One of the things we knew out of the surveys we'd done was a lot of the coffee shops and cafes were struggling to find baristas or staff," he said.
"We thought we can give them the experience of being able to make a great coffee and then be able to hopefully get some work experience and eventually a job for the future."
He said Be.Bendigo would be appealing to the business community to give the program's participants the opportunity to do work experience.
"We know if they get that opportunity then that could move into full-time employment at some period of time," Mr Bice said.
"So our aim now will be to work with Bendigo Community Health and the business community to see if we can get them some work experience and opportunities, and eventually a job."
Mr Aung said young people from refugee backgrounds had flagged other training areas of interest, including apprenticeships in the trades.
Some students he had recently spoken with at a Bendigo school aspired to become plumbers or carpenters.
Mr Aung was not aware of any apprenticeship opportunities in Bendigo specifically targeted to members of the migrant community.
He said programs like the barista training, which were designed especially to meet the needs of migrants, were important.
"Migrants have extra challenges compared to the wider community," Mr Aung said.
"So it would be a really good opportunity just to have something for them, give them a bit of confidence and a better chance of getting into employment."
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