The Lebanese Muslim Association joined forces with CORE Community Services to host the Future Path Expo 2023 on Wednesday 8 November.
Formerly known as the LMA Career Expo, the educational/careers fair took place at the spacious Whitlam Leisure Centre in Liverpool in southwest Sydney and organisers have hailed the day as an overwhelming success.
The central theme of the event was “Navigating Youth Careers & Education” and the LMA and event partner CORE Community Services welcomed more than 50 professionals and companies from the Liverpool/Bankstown area who had their own dedicated stands and engaged with hundreds of students from a number of schools and other educational centres.
The Expo’s main aim was to foster and motivate young people to see themselves in various spaces and discover what future career and skill development pathways are available within different organisations and businesses.
Those to take advantage of the Expo’s offerings included recently arrived migrants and those from refugee backgrounds, who were provided with valuable insights into various career, vocational and tertiary opportunities that will no doubt support their skill development and practical experience.
AMUST recently revealed that in the southwestern Sydney region alone, more than 130,000 young people aged 15 and over currently lack formal qualifications and have little or no work experience.
This Expo was a collective effort by the LMA, CORE Community Services and all other participating organisations to help change these statistics and provide those in need of help the tools they need to succeed.
Liverpool Mayor Ned Mannoun, Liverpool Hospital’s acting general manager Scott McGrath and inspirational author and western Sydney community leader Om Dhungel, who arrived in Australia as a refugee from Bhutan 15 years ago, were the keynote speakers and all emphasised the potential for growth in western Sydney.
Mayor Mannoun spoke proudly and with passion about the future of western Sydney, where the new International Airport (due to open in 2026) is creating thousands of jobs.
“We want a good quality life for our (local) people and for them to be able to work in our area,” he told the large gathering.
“They shouldn’t be stuck in cars or on the train for two to three hours every day just to go to work.”
“This event showcases job opportunities for western Sydney perfectly and is a wonderful initiative by the LMA.”
The LMA has rekindled its once close relationship with the Australasian Muslim Times (AMUST) over the past 12-18 months and AMUST has been the media partner for the past two LMA Career Expos and also the recent LMA-facilitated National Mosque Open Day.
“This year’s Expo was bigger and better than last year and far more people have attended,” AMUST editor-in-chief Zia Ahmad enthused.
“These events are a great place for networking and are an excellent opportunity for students to come along and listen to inspirational guest speakers and gain advice from business owners who’ve been there and done that.”
Dean Mousad, the founder of Invictus Solutions and co-founder of charities Brothers In Need and Project Qur’an also spoke enthusiastically about the Expo as did MCCA Islamic finance Business Development Manager Muhamed Saeed.
LMA community support worker Linda Kartout was the chief co-ordinator of the event and was ecstatic over the day’s outcome.
“We definitely exceeded all expectations and a huge thank you must go to our partner CORE Community Services (headed by Youth Services managers Ashlei Hay and Esra Spasenovski), Liverpool Council and all of the various businesses, training and educational organisations, schools and colleges who participated in Future Path Expo,” Lynda said.
“A further thank you also to Ali Bahnasawy and the SBS team for their wonderful TV coverage of the event and to Zia Ahmed, Editor-In-Chief of AMUST, our other media partner.”
“LMA vice president Roy (Raed) Halabi and my colleague Natalie Dergham did a great job with the MC-ing, while Roy also showcased his exceptional interviewing skills when speaking with various participants and stakeholders for our socials.”