Debbie is a non-Aboriginal woman from the North Coast of NSW and now a long-time resident of Canberra. She initially trained as a social worker and worked in hospitals and in youth work before spending over 20 years working for the Federal Government in health and community service policy and program development. During that time she developed expertise in health system funding arrangements, workforce development, quality management, consumer focus, and adaptation of programs to promote better access to services. This included working closely with a range of stakeholders to improve the cultural safety of service delivery arrangements for both consumers and workers. She continues this work as a staff consultant with Human Capital Alliance Pty Ltd, much of which involves collaboration with Aboriginal project partners such as Carol Vale from Murawin Consulting.
While raising young children, Debbie also trained as a landscape architect and, in the process, discovered the rich potential for landscape design in community-building and child development. As a result, she has led a number of local community initiatives to provide rich play options and meeting places for local children and their families. She is deeply interested in the ways that culturally rich, challenging and fun outdoor play spaces can strengthen local communities. And to promote community control of this process, she is exploring ways of using design theory principles to support locals to create their own successful place-based spaces using low tech and low cost building techniques, improving health and social outcomes for all involved in the process.
Abstracts this author is presenting: