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Helen has worked in a range of policy, planning and management positions, principally focused on the delivery of services by the non-government community services sector. Her experience in these positions led to her appointment to South Australia Executive Director for the Australian Red Cross in June 2013.

Previously, Helen held the position of Chief Executive Inclusive Directions Inc., an independent community based organisation that promotes and supports the inclusion of vulnerable and at risk children. Within this position she developed strong relationships with the Secretariat of National Aboriginal and Islander Child Care (SNAICC), the Indigenous Professional Support Unit providers across the country promoting the inclusion of Aboriginal children, community and culture in Early Childhood Services. Helen also held Executive positions within Anglicare SA where she was responsible for one of the most diverse community services portfolios in SA.

Helen’s roles involved both the development and implementation of services in areas as diverse as child protection, social enterprise, housing environmental programs and refugee services at front line and senior leadership levels.  Her work with Aboriginal communities includes involvement in the establishment of Marni Waiendi and a number of programs in partnership with Kaurna Plains School. Using her established networks and relationships, Helen is passionate about working with individuals and groups to find new and different ways of increasing opportunities for social participation of all people, especially those who are marginalised or excluded.

Helen has been Chairperson of the South Australian Council of Social Services (SACOSS) since December 2010 and Executive member on the Australian Council of Social Services (ACOSS) since2012 and was instrumental in the development of their first Reconciliation Action Plan. She has been the Director of Westside Community Legal Centre since2009 and a member of Justice Reinvestment SA and Co-Chair Human Services Partnership Forum since 2013.  Helen has taken an active advocacy role in key policy issues impacting upon the wellbeing of Australian families and children and has been an advocate for building long-term and respectful partnerships by working with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, communities and organisations to determine and lead their own solutions.

As a community services leader Helen has worked with many Aboriginal people and has developed respectful professional and personal relationships.  She now believes it is the time to connect at a deeper level and to offer her leadership, governance capabilities and sphere of influence, to practically work towards reconciliation within SA.