Divesh Narayan is one of around 70 Multicultural Service Officers who work with migrant and refugee communities connecting with the department and other agencies.
Divesh works in the southern Sydney region and has been with the department for 2 years.“I’m a Fijian-born Indian and came to Australia in 1981 with my Mum, Dad and 4 sisters,” Divesh said.
“For my parents I think it was okay, but for us we came here when we were in our teens and it was difficult.”
“One of my biggest issues was my skin colour which was a bit of a barrier. The way I worked around that was making friends and having a positive attitude towards life and that got me through,” Divesh said.
After 20 years in the banking and finance industry Divesh decided to follow his passion for making a difference and became a Multicultural Service Officer.
“I joined the department because I love helping people and I think this is a role that really suits me,” Divesh said.
“That is what I am doing now, helping people to achieve their goals.”
Divesh describes how networking is an essential tool for uncovering individual and community needs. This includes building trust and strong relationships with community leaders and organisations.
“A good Multicultural Service Officer is able to network effectively with culturally and linguistically diverse communities, identify what they need, and then be proactive with running info sessions, helping with cultural events and being generally responsive to the communities,” he said.
Divesh is a great advocate for mentorship programs, having had a mentor himself.
“I would love to mentor a new Multicultural Service Officer because I would like them to learn what I have learnt and be able to apply what I’m applying to the community.”
Helping customers to use the department’s self service technology to avoid phone calls or standing in queues is a particular passion of Divesh’s.
“The digital services I promote are myGov and Express Plus Lite. I sit down with individuals or groups and ensure they know how to register and use them.
“This is a win for the customers as well as for the department.”
The name Divesh in Hindi means ‘shining with the light of illumination’ and Divesh certainly has words of wisdom to share.
“It’s not what you know, it’s your attitude that counts for a lot,” Divesh said.
“But attitude is something you cannot learn. It is something that is built within you and if you have a great attitude you’ll have no issues delivering the product you need for whatever job you go into.”
A particular highlight of the role for Divesh is being part of a tight-knit team.
“I love my job because of the great team we have” said Divesh. “Being on the same page in trying to help customers, that makes it all worthwhile”.