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Our Mob

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Shannon is a Gumbaynggirr woman from the Mid North Coast of NSW with family and bloodline connections to Bundjalung, Tiwi Islands and Dunghutti countries. Shannon has been working in the child protection and out-of-home care sector for 20 years and has developed a unique blend of practice, cultural and cross-cultural knowledge, and leadership experience for which she is highly regarded.

Shannon has a strong contemporary working knowledge of the child protection and care system as an Aboriginal practitioner and senior leader and is currently the State Director, Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Practice and Partnerships at Life Without Barriers.

Shannon’s Board experience has included: Director and Deputy Chair of Tweed Byron Local Aboriginal Land Council from March 2016 to January 2023. Whilst in the role as Director and Deputy Chairperson, Shannon has participated in legislative, policy and procedure reform across several industries. She has worked for many years to build robust relationships, enabling her to give frank advice and contribute to written submissions about how legislation, policy and procedures infringe upon Aboriginal Cultural Responsibility and Rights to Community and Country (Land, Waters and Airspace), and the protection of critically endangered migratory species of both fauna & flora.

Shannon Mackie

Winangay Chair

Debbie Hind

To be updated

Winangay Vice-Chair

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Sheree Stewart

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Sheree Stewart is a proud Kamilaroi/Wailwan woman, born and raised on Dharawal Country in Southwest Sydney NSW.

 

Sheree has over 25 years of experience in Community programs and Child Protection.  A passionate advocate of keeping families together and strong in culture, Sheree has held high-level management roles within the Department of Communities and Justice in Child Protection, Aboriginal Intensive Family Based Support, and policy reform. Sheree was a former Aboriginal State Advisory Group member and has developed strong leadership and advocacy skills that she uses to influence policy reform. 

Sheree currently works with the Department of Planning, Heritage and Environment managing the Policy, Reform and Culture team within Aboriginal Land Strategy, Crown Lands. In this role, Sheree works with Communities across NSW to highlight the Aboriginal connection to the land and advocate for land return. Sheree is also an Independent Carer Assessor completing assessments across NSW. 

A proud mother of four children who, along with her husband of 21 years, fosters children also, Sheree has in-depth, contemporary system knowledge which aids in her ability to fight for families. 

Paula Hayden

Winangay Public Officer

Paula Hayden - Winangay Public Officer

Paula Hayden (MSW) has extensive experience working with children and families with multiple and complex needs. Paula is an experienced and insightful clinician Paula worked as a Senior Social Worker at the specialist Child Protection Unit in Westmead Children’s Hospital NSW. One of only two specialist units in the state Paula worked in a multidisciplinary team that included medical professionals and senior social workers. Paula undertook complex assessments, for courts and the Department of Communities and Justice, and refined her clinical skills working with children and families who had experienced intergenerational trauma and abuse. In this context, Paula developed innovative resources that promoted a trauma-informed collaborative approach that focused on children’s safety, recovery, and healing.

Paula has co-authored a range of resources that have had national applications.

A founding member of Winangay Resources, Paula was a major contributor to the development of the award-winning, trauma-informed, culturally safe, and strength-based tools. She has worked alongside First Nations Elders, Consultants, workers, and kids to develop resources that embed stronger ways of working and reflect First Nations people’s knowledge, expertise, and resilience. 

Paula has consulted for jurisdictions and NGOs across Australia. Published nationally and internationally, Paula has presented a numerous conference in Australia (SNAICC, Child Aware, ACWA) and at the International Conferences, Dublin, London, Vancouver, and in Edinburgh alongside Professor Fiona Arney Director Australian Centre for Child Protection. 

Burramatagal country (Parramatta NSW) has been the country Paula has been privileged to live and work, raise her kids on for 30 years. This is the country that keeps her strong and she loves to walk on.

Kim Squires

Winangay Treasurer

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Kim Squires has over twenty-five years of experience in business management and administration. Kim is married to a proud Darug man. Kim and her husband were raised and live on Dharawal Country (Illawarra Region).

Kim and her husband have been passionate and tireless advocates for Aboriginal children and believe children are always better off with family. Kim and her husband are currently kinship carers. Kim’s family was assessed by an independent assessor who used the Winangay Aboriginal kinship carer assessment tool. 

As a kinship carer, Kim’s knowledge extends to all aspects of the out-of-home care sector and the need to remain child-focused, especially during stressful periods such as family contact and court hearings. Kim recognises there are some highs and lows to being a kinship grandparent but to witness her grandchild learn to trust and love again and to see her thrive in a safe and protective environment makes it all worthwhile. 

Kim’s extensive carer knowledge and valuable insights were soon recognised by the Winangay team, and she was appointed Treasurer earlier in 2022. Kim is committed to the ongoing development of the Winangay tools and resources. 

Kim likes to spend time with her family and is a ‘would-be’ artist, she has been painting and drawing for the past three years and loves to encourage and draw with her grandkids and other children.

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