Our team of highly skilled and passionate youth workers all have current Working With Children Checks, adhere to Child Safety Practices and are Mandatory Reporters. We work from a strengths-based approach to achieve the best outcomes for the young people we work with.
SENTRAL Youth Services Coordinator
Mel coordinates the planning and delivery of services to young people at SENTRAL Youth Services and across Kiama Council.
Mel is passionate about empowering young people to realise their own potential and live their best lives. She facilitates programs, delivers events and provides individual support, referrals and advocacy to young people who attend SENTRAL Youth Services.
Mel holds a Bachelor of Arts (Psychology) and Certificate IV in Training and Assessment and Diploma of Professional Writing. She brings to this role a wealth of experience in community project work, community development, disability advocacy and disability support.
Joshua Maynard has been part of our team since January 2021. Josh is a welcoming face at SENTRAL who mentors and supports young people who visit. He leads the Individual Support program.
Josh has a Diploma and Cert IV in Community Services and a Cert IV in Training and Assessment. Josh is also a qualified mechanic and we love his practical skills!
Josh has a wealth of experience in the areas of Youth, disability, employment and education.
Josh is passionate about seeing young people achieving their goals through a strengths-based approach. He enjoys coaching young people to develop the skills and knowledge that will enable them to be self-sufficient and empowered to make positive choices.
Rubi has been a member of the SENTRAL team since 2017 and provides information, advice and referral through the drop in and individual support programs as well as facilitating Empower.
Rubi has a Mental Health Cert IV, Diploma of Counselling and is currently completing a Bachelor of Social Work at UOW.
Rubi is passionate about promoting the rights of women and gender diverse people. Rubi brings her strong knowledge of mental and sexual health to her role as a youth worker. She works to empower young people to build confidence, self-esteem and develop strategies to improve their overall wellbeing.
Elena has been part of the team since June 2019 and facilitates our Drop In program and provides individual support and assistance to young people who attend the centre.
Prior to relocating to Kiama to be closer to family, Elena lived in Auckland, New Zealand working as a Program Coordinator and Mentor for Youth Development. She has worked with young people in secondary schools in both New Zealand and the United Kingdom in various coaching and facilitation roles.
Elena has a Bachelors Degree in Health Sciences (Psychology Major) and is currently studying toward a Post Graduate Diploma of Counselling. Elena utilities this knowledge in her role, along with her passion for fitness, nutrition and building and maintaining a healthy lifestyle.
Youth Worker – Create to Connect
Member of our team since February 2021, Abdul Lawal is the project lead on our Create to Connect Project. He is our man for all things active and creative!
Abdul has achieved a Bachelor of Psychology (Honours) from the University of Wollongong. His youth work experience includes 3 years as a summer camp counsellor in the US, 2.5 years as a mental health support worker with Flourish Australia and many years of voluntary experience working with young people, including Twilight Tournaments, Help Out a Mate mental health program, In2Uni mentoring at UOW, soccer coaching and volunteering with the Elevate Young Leaders Program.
Abdul has a personal passion for mental health and wellbeing and how we can improve and maintain them both as individuals, and across society as a whole. I hope to one day become a psychologist, and to help people heal from trauma.