STAFF PROFILES: Tanya Kane – Community Facilitator (Northern Bay)

“We can walk alongside the community to make a difference and bring about positive and sustainable change.

What roles have you worked in before Our Place?
I worked with the City of Greater Geelong in the Family Services Department in various roles for over 20 years. This included time as both an early childhood educator/teacher and then later as a Lead Educator and Admin Officer (LEAO) and Centre Manager.

What attracted you to work at Our Place?
Our Place aligns with my philosophy and vision around the importance of the early years in improving educational outcomes for children and families. It’s an exciting opportunity to do really innovative work. I love the fact that it’s a long-term commitment and a partnership between philanthropy and government

What’s your role now?
I’m a Community Facilitator at Our Place Northern Bay. I help to build meaningful relationships across the site and liaise with both partners and our community. I help connect families to the services they need through onsite warm referrals. Overall, I advocate for systems change and the removal of barriers to improve educational outcomes.

What specialised skills and knowledge do you use in your work?
I use my qualifications and experience in the Early Years sector, skills in communication and collaboration with community, site partners and external stakeholders and project management.

“I draw on qualities that relate to our core values
around Passion, Leadership, Aspiration, Commitment and Excellence.

Tell us about the communities you work with
Our site is located in the Geelong suburb of Corio and is characterised by long-term, significant disadvantage. Many families in the area experience a range of vulnerabilities such as low socio-economic background, disability, refugee status and children in out-of-home care..

What is your favourite memory of working at Our Place?
In our early days, we planned a Community Meeting that brought together agencies servicing the local community. It was the first opportunity to introduce the work of Our Place and our partners to about 50 people from across the local area.

Because it seemed to involve all the same event-planning functions,
we joked that it felt like we were organising a wedding

What are your interests and hobbies?
I love to travel and go on adventures. I like to spend time with family and friends, read and go to the beach. I also enjoy cultural pursuits and visits to concerts, galleries and the theatre. I’m a footy fan and follow the Cats in the AFL.

What’s a fun fact about you that people may not know?
I took long-service leave from my previous role and spent time living in Vietnam and teaching English to both children and adults. I also volunteered at an orphanage, became very attached… and was very close to bringing a little girl home with me!