FOUR hard-working local students from non-English-speaking backgrounds have scored part-time jobs thanks to a three-cornered Coffs Harbour collaboration.
Farhad Safizadeh, Amanuel Ayelew, Achol Garang and Narges Safizadeh are all students at Orara High School and also part-time employees of Woolworths.
For each of the teenage refugees, it's an achievement long in the making.
They've had to adapt to life in a new country, learn a new language and attend a new school before getting to the point of wanting a casual job to earn some pocket money.
Luckily Work Bites, a collaboration between Youth Directions, Orara High School and Woolworths, gave the Year 10 and 11 students the opportunity to get hands-on time in the workplace.
Orara High School careers adviser Kim Harland said the program gave students the chance to familiarise themselves with work choices and an understanding of work requirements.
"Farhad, Amanuel, Achol and Narges are not only role models in the community but to our other students," Mr Harland said.
"By taking part in this program, which is an important part of schooling at the ESL unit at Orara, they are learning new skills, gaining confidence and overcoming language difficulties.
"And I'm pleased to say Woolworths has just offered all four of them casual jobs."
It was because of their fantastic attitude and willingness to learn during their work experience, all four students can now earn some serious pocket money.
"We were all really impressed with how quickly they adapted," Woolworths Park Beach Plaza assistant store manager Daniel Graves said.
"All four were super friendly and full of excitement which is exactly what we look for.
"Working in some areas, like the deli, can be a bit intimidating for new workers but these kids were eager and nudging staff out of the way to get to the customers after only 10 minutes' training."
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