Bianca combines community sector and academic experience to address social justice issues. After initially volunteering in mother support groups in Paris, France, she then contributed to the ACT community sector through board roles, including her role as president of the Brindabella Women’s Group. She also enjoyed coordinating community arts projects and exhibitions and was a regular host of a local multicultural women’s radio show. Through ACT community development and team leader roles, Bianca coordinated programs to support families and seniors. More recently, she worked as a Senior Policy Advisor (Sector Development, Health & Disability) at ACTCOSS. Her PhD research project (ANU) included coordinating a memory workshop/yarning circle with Kamilaroi women (from Moree, NSW) and mothers in the ACT region. Bianca’s current work, through Families Australia and ANU respectively, focuses on gender equality, family policy and community development/engagement and continues to be informed by over a decade of practical experience running community sector programs.
If you do what you love, you never work a day in your life. And I do feel that when I work in the community sector, although it is really hard work, that I don’t always work. So for me, I think if I can feel like I’m contributing to people’s lives, if I’m helping people and if I feel like that doesn’t even feel like work – in the sense that it’s just fulfilling my life’s purpose – then for me, that’s a sense of success.
Brad is the CEO of MIEACT, an organisation that is dedicated to delivering education programs that increase community mental health literacy. Previously, for over a decade, Brad was a researcher and lecturer at the University of Melbourne, where his area of substantive expertise was social and health Program Evaluation. In this role, Brad evaluated a wide range of small and large scale programs including mental health and mental health education programs. He then worked over the next nine years for the International Baccalaureate Organisation, with postings to the IB’s Singapore and the Hague global offices, where he was Head of the organisation’s Research Division. Returning to Australia with his family during the COVID-19 pandemic, Brad commenced working with MIEACT in September 2021 as Deputy CEO. Brad joined the community sector to make a positive impact on community mental health.
I find that, having entered the community sector, very enriching and rewarding is the people I get to work with. The people you work with are there with a passion. I would say nobody in my workplace is simply rolling up in order to clock out at five o’clock. You have their people who are passionate about what they do and being around that is a wonderful positive energy.