Kirrip Aboriginal Corporation

Board members

Sharon sowter

CHAIRPERSON

My ancestral mob is Yorta Yorta and I’ve lived and worked on Wurundjeri land all my life. I am Chairperson of Kirrip Aboriginal Corporation and have taught in Melton for over 18 years in a local Primary School.
I am the proud Great Great Granddaughter of William Cooper; his own granddaughter, my grandmother, was taken from her Aboriginal family as a young child and denied her culture. It was important to her that I learn about and experience what she was unable to – I have therefore made it my mission to do so and my work at Kirrip goes a long way towards being able to connect with mob.
I have delighted in watching Kirrip grow over the past year, with new groups and activities available for members to be a part of. I am honoured to be involved at board level, in order to help create and enhance the programs and services that we can potentially offer our families. Stay tuned, there are exciting times ahead!

LUCY WEBSTER

DEPUTY CHAIRPERSON

 As a proud Kamilaroi woman, I am very passionate about Aboriginal community and the health and social issues affecting individual, the community and organisations. I have been involved within the community for a number of years, and have been a volunteer at Kirrip for many years where I have been able to form connections and assist community members. I am passionate about creating a community for children, young people, individuals and families that is culturally strong, empowered, and safe.
As a member of the Kirrip Board I will strive to achieve the best possible outcomes for the community through the planning, development, and execution of programs and partnerships. I have completed Aboriginal mental health first aid, diploma in Business management and business administration, and advanced diploma in community sector management. 

LITA KERR TIRRKONEN

BOARD SECRETARY

Born on Kamilaroi Country – (Narrabri).
I didn’t know about my heritage growing up, and have only discovered this the last few years, after lots of research. 
I have really embraced and identified with my culture.  Kirrip has been amazing in helping me in my journey, and helping me find where I belong and to connect with mob. 
I have worked the last 11 years at a Secondary College, working in special needs and counselling, and have been in Scouts for 17 years. I have a Diploma of Education Support, Diploma of Counselling,  a Certificate in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Cultural Competence, a Certificate in Aboriginal Language/Culture – Gamilaraay, and have also completed other cultural courses. I speak broken Gamilaraay, am an active member of our RAP (Reconciliation Action Plan) team at work. I am a strong advocate for Mental Health, and supporting community.  I believe you get back two fold, what you put in.  I thank mob for electing me on the board, and look forward to working with you.

SKYE GOOCH

BOARD TREASURER

I have lived in Melton for the past 11 years. My Grandmother is from Cunnamulla, due to the dispossession and destruction of Aboriginal peoples and their culture I like so many did not grow up with culture. I have begun to connect with culture and start my journey with it. Currently studying my Bachelor of Social Work. I sit on Melton City Councils Reconciliation Advisory Committee as a community member. I was fortunate to be given the opportunity to complete my placement at Kirrip in 2018. Since becoming a member of Kirrip it has given me opportunities to immerse myself in culture, endless learning opportunities, and give me a whole community of mob I didn’t know was possible.

By being a Kirrip board member,  I hope to continue to create an environment where Aboriginal peoples of Melton and surrounds have a safe space to explore and learn about culture. I also hope to be able to use the skills and knowledge I have gained from my study to help advance and foster the growth of Kirrip and work in collaboration with Kirrip members and community to create opportunities for mob to achieve black excellence.

DAWN DAVIES

BOARD MEMBER

Dawn Davies is a proud Aboriginal women from the Warramungu land, Tenant Creek, Northern Territory, currently living on the lands of the Kulin Nation in Melton, Victoria.

Dawn is a family orientated mother of 6 grown children who also live in Melton, Grandmother of 11 grandchildren, Dawn spends her time volunteering at Kirrip, supporting community and is an active board member and past board treasurer.By being a Kirrip board member,  I hope to continue to create an environment where Aboriginal peoples of Melton and surrounds have a safe space to explore and learn about culture. I also hope to be able to use the skills and knowledge I have gained from my study to help advance and foster the growth of Kirrip and work in collaboration with Kirrip members and community to create opportunities for mob to achieve black excellence.

MATT KENNEDY

BOARD MEMBER

I am a proud Gunaikurnai man. I have worked in media and communications (design, illustration, and content writing).

 

I grew up in Darug Country, New South Wales, and am currently living in Footscray on Wurundjeri land.

JACQUI WATKINS

BOARD MEMBER

Jacqueline is a descendant of Jingili/Mudburra people of Elliott in the Northern Territory. Born on Larrakia Nation, Darwin and raised on Arrernte lands, at Mparntwe (Alice Springs). She has always been a strong advocate in Aboriginal affairs especially in Education, Health and Family Violence. 

Jacqueline has extensive experience in mentoring Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children from early childhood through to secondary education throughout her career, including education of teaching staff.  She has worked with different early childhood organisations and secondary schools throughout Australia.

Staff

Peter WEBster

EXECUTIVE OFFICER

Peter Webster is a proud Kamilaroi man from central N.S.W, currently living on the lands of the Kulin Nations in City of Melton. Peter is committed to our community and works hard to support the community as the Executive Officer of Kirrip.

Peter Has been a member of Kirrip for 6 Years and Executive Officer for the past 4 years. Peter is always available to community and looks forward to having a yarn with anyone who drops by Kirrip.

ADELE TILLET

COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT OFFICER

I am a proud Yorta Yorta woman from Shepperton, living in Melton on the lands of the Wurundjeri people. I am a
mother to 5 beautiful grown children, grandmother of 4 and I have also been a foster carer
 for kid’s in out of home care. During 2020 I volunteered at Kirrip Aboriginal Corporation, pre lockdown, whilst studying to become an Indigenous employment consultant.

On completing my studies, I was contacted by MatchWorks to become the Western, Ballarat and Bendigo regions Indigenous employment consultant a position I held until the completion of the contract, I then moved to HDF Aboriginal employment services, where I mentored, case managed and supported community in overcoming the barriers to gaining employment.
I would like to introduce myself to community as the new Community Development Officer for the west Metro area, working out of Kirrip. I look forward to meeting and supporting all you mob.

KEENAN MADDEN

LOCAL ABORIGINAL JUSTICE WORKER

Hey you Mob, my name is Keenan Madden.  I’m a proud Yorta Yorta and Taungurung descent.

It is with honour and integrity that I introduce myself as the new Local Aboriginal Justice Worker for the Western Metropolitan Region at Kirrip Aboriginal Corporation.

I am looking forward to the opportunity in being a part of the Justice system and the Koori community to improve justice outcomes and offer support to enhance the best outcomes for Koori people.

Melissa baker

ABORIGINAL HEALTH SERVICE LIAISON

Hey there! I am a very proud Erub and Moa Island woman from the Torres Strait. I work as the Aboriginal Health Liaison Officer (AHLO) for Kirrip in partnership with Djerriwarrh Community Health Services. My role is to link our Indigenous community members in with a variety of services within Djerriwarrh Health and Kirrip. I will help ensure our Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander families feel safe and supported within those services, advocate on their behalf, ensure they have a say in their own care, prioritizing their needs to receive services in a timely manner and attend appointments with them for emotional, social and/or cultural support.   

Seeing that our indigenous population become warriors and not worriers in all aspects of their health while keeping them connected to their culture, my hope is that our people thrive and not just survive.

EMMA JAMES

JOBS VICTORIA ADVOCATE (JVA)

Yaama! My name is Emma, and I am a strong Palawa woman working and living on the lands of the Wurundjeri people.

Growing up, I did not have the knowledge and culture around me to start my journey. I came into cultural connections in the last 12 months, through my grandfather and working with local community who have helped guide and mentor me on my cultural journey.

Coming from a real estate background I have always had a passion for helping others. The desire to help community has led me to Kirrip Aboriginal Corporation, where I am able to work, support and share culture with my community. I was recently employed as the Job Victoria Advocate.

I look forward to connecting with you and having a yarn!

CHEETAH TOohey

JVA ADMINISTRATION ASSISTANT

I am a proud Warramungu woman living on the Wurundjeri lands of Melton. I am a child of 2 cultures Romani Gypsy on my dad’s side and my Warramungu on my mum’s. I was raised in my dad’s culture and have embraced my Warramungu culture over the past 5 years.

 

I have been a stay-at-home mum for the past 9 years, with 2 young children, volunteering at Kirrip where I could support community. I recently started as an employee at Kirrip in the Jobs Victoria Advocate admin assistant position, where I will engage and support community. and learn as much as I can and further my skills in assisting and helping community. 

aMIELIA wALL

COMMUNITY SERVICES TRAINEE

My name is Amielia Wall, but most people call me Milly! I am a proud Djab Wurrung woman. I’ve lived in many different places across Australia, and currently live and work locally on Wurundjeri and Woi Wurrung country. I have a young son who can often be found here at Kirrip House alongside me.

Engaging with people and supporting our local Indigenous community has always been a passion of mine. I love volunteering at events and groups that work with Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander people. I will be a friendly face offering help at Kirrip programs like youth, elders and womens group.  While working here at Kirrip I will be doing a traineeship to complete my Diploma of Community Services!