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Italy’s New Training Initiative Will Help Refugees and Migrants Start Careers in Fashion

Etro FW21. Photo: Instagram/@cameramoda

The National Chamber of Italian Fashion has presented a new initiative on the occasion of World Refugee Day on June 20. Called Fashion Deserves the World, the project enables 15 young refugees and migrants who wish to pursue a career in fashion to able to study and find work in Italian fashion companies.

Also coinciding with Men’s Fashion Week in Milan from June 18 to 22, Camera Nazionale della Moda Italiana (CNMI) has collaborated with Mygrants, a start-up and charity company that offers micro-learning programs in three languages ​​to help migrants and refugees master skills and find jobs. It is part of a calendar of initiatives promoted by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).

Photo: Courtesy of CNMI

With retirements set to take place in the next three to four years, there will be 40,000 vacancies in the fashion industry, so this small operation will also benefit Italian companies in need of new employees, according to CNMI president Carlo Capasa. “Two years are necessary to train new professional figures and it would be a disaster to lose the quality of our craftsmen who are leaving their jobs without heirs,” he said. Capasa also called for “specific training paths including at a government level.”

Laura Lucci, in charge of private sector partnerships for UNHCR Italia, said that “companies need a turnover of well-trained and motivated people and, according to the latest macroeconomic studies, the diversity brought by migrants is an added value.”

Applications will open on June 21 for migrants, refugees and stateless persons who are fluent in Italian and have a strong will to work in the fashion sector on the Mygrants organization website. It will then be reviewed by the startup and by CNMI. The 15 finalists will participate in training sessions and start working in companies under the patronage of CNMI.

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