Connecting to the community through volunteering

While holidaying in Australia, Celine and her husband visited many cities including Melbourne and Sydney, but it was Adelaide that they fell in love with at first sight.

During their week in Adelaide they spent their time exploring the beautiful tree-lined streets, shopping in Rundle Mall, having coffee at beachside cafes, and watching people and children enjoying the clean, open spaces. This is when they knew Adelaide would be the perfect place for their family.

"Apart from the globally renowned education system, the environment in South Australia makes it so much easier for kids to grow happy and healthy with access to so many parks all over the city of Adelaide. Can you imagine how wonderful it is to see your kids being educated and grow in such an amazing environment?" 

Celine found the online state nomination application process very straightforward through the Immigration SA website, and once her visa was approved they began planning the big move from Vietnam to South Australia.

Being aware that moving to a new country with the whole family is a big challenge, Celine allowed herself time to relax and familiarise herself with the new environment, and not to focus on job hunting immediately upon arrival.

"It does not mean you do nothing, but it is important to give yourself enough time to settle in properly and set up home. This time can also be used to research on what you want to do in terms of employment, and start looking at building networks, before you start applying for jobs."

Once they arrived in Adelaide, Celine and her husband took every opportunity to attend free events such as the 'Welcome to SA' information session, New Arrivals dinner, and employment workshops organised for skilled migrants. They also opened the doors to volunteering which provided an opportunity to meet lots of new friends, and gain local work experience.

"I wanted to get in touch with my new community and decided to do some volunteer work. I took a retail position with a NGO. Although it was not related to my employment history, I thoroughly enjoyed it as I could meet a lot of local people and understand the culture of the workplace in Australia." 

The employment support programs provided by Immigration SA played an important role in Celine's job search process. She believes she used many of the tips from the Job Essentials and Interview Workshops to successfully obtain her job as Marketing and Communicatons Manager at Carnegie Mellon University.

Celine has the following advice to others who are considering, or have already moved to, South Australia:

"Believe in yourself. It’s all about yourself, not the place, not the environment, because SA is already a great place. Welcome and enjoy whatever is coming to you with an open heart and positive eyes."

Learn more about Celine's migration journey by watching the video below.

Celine Dang