ACT Branch Management Committee 2020
Branch Vice President
General Committee Members
I have experience across project management, program management, ministerial correspondence and policy coordination. Most recently, working as a Senior Program Officer on the Department of Human Services’ Remote Servicing Strategy. Prior to this, I worked under the department’s financial capability agreement with the Australian Securities and Investment Commission. I hold a Bachelor of Writing; a Postgraduate Certificate in Policy and Applied Social Research; and a Master of Social Work.
I hold a Bachelor of Social Work (Hons) from University of New South Wales and a PhD from Curtin University.
After graduating in the mid 1980’s I worked in social work fields, including counselling, group work, family work and community development. As Associate Professor in Social Work at the Australian Catholic University I pursue my strong interests of research, teaching and supervision. Teaching and supervising social work students provides a constant reminder that our dynamic profession requires people from diverse backgrounds.
My particular areas of interest are working with migrants and refugees and undertaking collaborative work with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander social workers and community members. I love the challenges of constantly learning and developing effective social work practices.
Through the ACT Branch Committee I want to contribute my passion, perseverance and strong commitment to social justice and human rights. I am committed to sharing my experience with others for the purpose of developing a vibrant professional culture for local AASW members.
After completing my Bachelors of Social Work at the Australian Catholic University of Canberra in 2005, I began my Social Work career at Woden Community Services. In 2007, I joined the Department of Human Services, then known as Centrelink, and never left.
I have had leadership roles in the implementation of complex social policy including the School Enrolment and Attendance Measure, Income Management and Participation Compliance. More recently, I facilitated Social Work engagement and the provision of our expertise into the department’s ‘once-in-a-lifetime’ modernisation of welfare services. I am currently the assistant director for external engagement in the National Redress Scheme and responsible for establishing and maintaining collaborative, cross-sectoral relationships to strengthen service delivery.
Through the Branch Management Committee, I aim to facilitate greater social and professional connections amongst Social Workers in the ACT, with a view to identifying and responding to the issues that affect our practice and professional identity.
Carolyn Minchin is an early career social worker, currently combining training in Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) with relief teaching in primary schools. Her previous committee experience includes Health Care Consumers (2002-2004) and the Mental Health Professionals Network (2013-2014), where she facilitated network meetings on ACT, DBT and cultural safety. Carolyn ran the Acceptance and Commitment Therapy ACT in the City Interest group for several years, and continues to facilitate networking among social workers and applied health professionals at the Association for Contextual Behavioral Science (ACBS). She facilitates an ongoing dialogue project with Gamarada Universal Indigenous Resources (GUIR) in Redfern, working on capacity building in suicide prevention and group supervision.
I’m a big believer in social justice and equality, which is influenced by my lived experience growing up in Sri Lanka. Seeing the disparity among people and the ravage created by war, I was privileged to witness the role of active citizenship in alleviating people’s suffering. Therefore, my career in the humanitarian sector was motivated by a passion for social justice and equality, and provided me with opportunities to empower and support vulnerable people. I have worked with young people, communities of refugee and migrant people as well as children and families in the context of Statutory Out-of-Home-Care (OOHC) and child protection. I have leadership experiences in policy advocacy, project management, strategy and training in the NGO sector and as a local government advisor. These opportunities enabled me to discover a passion for governance and accreditation of quality service provision. With a Masters in Social Work from the Australian Catholic University and a Bachelor of Social Science (Psychology) from Swinburne University, I hope to contribute to my role within the ACT Branch Committee, by ensuring social workers continue to be celebrated and provided with opportunities to create long term positive impact for the people they serve.
ACT Branch Services Coordinator
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