#WorldRefugeeDay is an opportunity for all individuals, groups and organisations to take a moment to recognise the strength, courage and resilience of the millions of refugees around the world.

In 2018 we had the privilege of meeting an inspiring man by the name of Hedayet Osyan (pictured below), a refugee from Afghanistan whose long journey to Australia was full of horrific hurdles.

Hedayet participated in our First Gens Program where we saw his passion and strength in creating employment opportunities for other refugees and migrants through his successful and growing social impact venture – Nick’s Tiling. 

“When I was in Afghanistan I hadn’t this freedom and in here I have everything. There’s massive opportunity for every people, there’s equality, there’s freedom and the life is really easy here.

“I’m really happy and I really appreciate the Australian Government, the Australian people who saved my life and I’m always trying very hard to give something back to Australian people, that’s my responsibility because they saved my life.” 

As the human race evolves, we are unfortunately witnessing the highest level of displacement on record with 68.5million people forcibly displaced around the world because of persecution, conflict, violence or human rights violations.

This is three times the population of Australia.

Here in Australia, where 28% of our population is born overseas, we don’t do nearly enough to raise awareness of the strength of migrant and refugee entrepreneurship, nor do we encourage people from other countries to start ventures here, or help them develop skills to build wealth for themselves and the community through self-employment.

Multiculturalism is about diversity, which in turn is about better creativity and decision-making. In order to attract more innovative ideas and grow our nation, we need to share the stories of the migrant-led business, to inspire aspiring migrant entrepreneurs and the broader community.

This is where a program like First Gens step in.


One of the most beautiful moments for us in facilitating the First Gens program for migrant and refugee-led social impact ventures, is when we have the privilege of witnessing a group of individuals from all different cultures, backgrounds, ages and genders, sitting together under one roof collaborating on how to best approach some of the local challenges here in the country.

Australia’s biggest point of difference in the global arena is its multiculturalism. When we all realise that embracing migrants and refugees isn’t just the right thing to do, but it is also a competitive strength in global business, innovation and entrepreneurship, that is the day when the local communities will win and the world will be inspired to unite as one human race.