Meet Our Team

Our team of Child Safety Advocates and Trainers collectively brings decades experience in abuse prevention education. We are a multidisciplinary team that share specialist backgrounds in Education, Social Work, Psychology, Counselling, Policing, Disability Services and Specialist Child Interviewing.

Nikki Mitchell

GradCertPublicHealth BSocSc(HumServ)

Co-founder & Director

About Nikki

Nikki is a passionate leader with expertise across the not-for-profit and commercial sectors. Her career spans across two decades, beginning in the residential care sector working with the state’s most at-risk and vulnerable children and young people. Her dedication to working with the community saw her appointed in a range of management and consulting roles in the not-for-profit and commercial sector with a focus on empowering communities. Nikki is a proud First Nations woman with working knowledge and experience in Indigenous engagement. She is Non-Executive Director and Company Secretary of a number of not-for-profit and for-purpose organisations. Nikki’s focus is to develop strong systems and practices to support the critical work of the team throughout the Western Australian community.

Justine O’Malley

MSW, GradCertCPP, BA(Ed)

Co-founder & Principal Trainer

About Justine

Justine is a qualified Teacher and Accredited Social Worker with over 29 years’ experience working in the education and child protection sectors.  Justine is one of Western Australia’s pioneers in Protective Behaviours and served for 16 years on the board of Protective Behaviours Australia. She has taught Protective Behaviours to children, young people, parents and professionals across Australia and internationally.  Justine is the author of Jasmine’s Butterflies and Michael’s Bubbles, two popular Protective Behaviours storybooks and has been the editor of a number of Protective Behaviours resources, including K-7 lesson plans for the Department of Education.  Justine is a lecturer at ECU and is a sought-after speaker both locally and across Australia. Her goal is to create safer communities by empowering and educating children and their families in the Protective Behaviours program.

Amy Varis

BSW Cert IV TAA

Child Safety Trainer
Program Co-ordinator

About Amy

Amy has over 10 years’ experience working within the child protection system in Western Australia. Amy is a qualified Social Worker, a Specialist Child Interviewer and has a Certificate IV in Training and Assessment. Amy’s passion for Protective Behaviours started when she was completing her Bachelor of Social Work at Curtin University and she has since delivered the program to children, young people, parents, carers and professionals throughout Perth and the East Kimberley region of Western Australia.  Amy’s most recent work was at the East Kimberley Family and Domestic Violence Service where she worked collaboratively with Aboriginal communities to prevent and reduce the impact of violence. Amy’s experiences as a foster carer and seeing the impact of child abuse and violence on children has deepened her passion for the Protective Behaviours program and educating the community about keeping children and families safe.

Katie Vos

DipPublicSafety

Child Safety Trainer

About Katie

Katie Vos developed a strong understanding of Protective Behaviours when she first began working within the program as a Police Officer. Her career at WA Police spans 10 years, working predominantly in the child protection field. She is a trained Specialist Child Interviewer and spent significant time working in remote communities throughout WA, where she developed a strong understanding of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture and communities. Katie has significant experience working with survivors of sexual abuse and has been heavily involved in cyber-based investigations. Recognising her passion for empowering children, families and communities, Katie undertook further Protective Behaviours training in 2015 and has since been a strong advocate and facilitator of the program. Katie has a special interest in delivering Protective Behaviours and Cyber Safety to children and young people with disabilities.

Amanda Grimbly

BA(Psych)

Child Safety Trainer

About Amanda

Amanda has over 20 years’ experience in the community services sector in Australia, New Zealand and the United Kingdom.  She has undertaken significant work in community based and prison based therapeutic interventions for youth and adult offenders who have committed serious, violent and sex offences. Amanda has also worked in both the government and not-for-profit sectors to support children and families who were deemed at risk due to exposure to trauma and violence, homelessness, and mental health issues. She has significant experience supporting children, young people and adults who were survivors of emotional, physical and sexual abuse. Her interest has always been in providing therapeutic and educational groups sessions, including Protective Behaviours programs, of which Amanda has had significant experience in delivering. Amanda’s professional experience has given her valuable insight into the experiences of both perpetrators and survivors of abuse and violence. She is passionate about utilising this knowledge to empower children and families to stay safe and develop positive relationships.

Diane West

BEd(Prim) DipSocWk

Child Safety Trainer

About Diane

Diane’s mission is to educate and inspire children and young people, believing that education is the first step towards empowerment. Diane is a registered Teacher, qualified Level 2 Neuro-Limbic Conditioning Coach and has over 10 years’ experience working as a Social Worker in the child protection sector in Scotland and Australia. She currently works as a Primary School Teacher in Perth. Diane’s personal and professional experiences drive her to make a difference to children and young people, particularly in the area of abuse prevention education. Diane is an experienced Protective Behaviours trainer and is passionate about preventing abuse in our community.

Azelene Williams

BSW DipHCouns, DipCommServ, CertDomFamViol

Lived Experience Presenter

About Azelene

Azelene’s ambition in life is to have a positive impact on this and future generations as an activist in the field of domestic and family violence.  Azelene pursues this passion as a qualified holistic counsellor, motivational speaker, facilitator, published author and co-founder of the harm-prevention charity, Kidzucate.  Azelene’s personal experience of domestic violence and her avid support of her daughter’s championing of bullying prevention have given her the drive to make our communities safer through education and empowerment.  Azelene is an articulate and inspirational presenter whose personal and professional experiences resonate with many. Azelene is currently completing a Bachelor of Social Work at ECU as she continues her vital work in the community.

Genevieve Jones

BSocSc DipHumServ CertIV(TAE)

Child Safety Trainer
Lived Experience Presenter

About Genevieve

Genevieve is a survivor of child sexual abuse and has a rich insight into trauma-related issues affecting children and adults.  Her extensive experience working in child protection, drug and alcohol counselling and the mental health sector together with her personal experience places her in a unique position to empower children, parents and educators to adopt the protective behaviours philosophy.  Genevieve has spent extended periods working in remote Indigenous communities, teaching Protective Behaviours to children, youth, teachers, parents and community groups. Genevieve believes that education is the most powerful tool to prevent child sexual abuse. Genevieve has a strong belief in building the knowledge and capacity of teachers to integrate the protective behaviours program in their curriculum. Read more of Genevieve’s story here.

Sian Dooley

BYouthWk – in progress, CertIII(Govt)

Youth Presenter

About Sian

Sian has 10 years’ experience working across non-for-profit, volunteer and government initiatives to empower and inspire people in the community. Sian’s experience includes consumer work in Child Adolescent Mental Health Services, National Public Speaker for the Black Dog Institute, National Presenter for Australian Indigenous Mentoring Experience, Advisor to the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare on Indigenous Youth Wellbeing, Mental Health Indigenous Representative for Monash University Standing Committee and Ambassador for One Girl.

Sian uses her own personal journey of overcoming trauma to reduce the stigma surrounding mental health and promote awareness to adolescents from all walks of life. Sian has developed resilience through her lived-experiences and hopes to equip young people with the tools to do the same. Sian is passionate about the safety of young people and knows how important and life-changing awareness of protective behaviours can be. She is currently studying a Bachelor of Youth work and is excited to continue to make a difference in this field.

Jocelyn Prosser

CertIVCommServ

Child Safety Trainer

About Jocelyn

Jocelyn is based in Bunbury in the beautiful South West of Western Australia and is currently studying towards a Bachelor of Social Work. Jocelyn has developed a passion for sharing the concepts of Protective Behaviours with children and young people to help keep them safe throughout their lifetime. She has seen the importance of the knowledge of these concepts during her years working in Pastoral Care roles in schools and alternate education settings in country Western Australia, and with her own children. Jocelyn is keen for all children and families to have the opportunity to learn Protective Behaviours including those in regional locations and those with diverse abilities. Jocelyn has a special interest in children and young people on the Autism spectrum.

Melinda Stepanek

GradCertEarlyChildhood, BEd(Primary)

Child Safety Trainer

About Mel

Melinda (Mel) is passionate about advocating for and supporting the rights and wellbeing of all children and young people so they can reach their full potential in life.   Mel is a qualified Early Childhood and Primary School Teacher with 20 years’ experience working with children in both schools and early learning settings.  She has significant experience teaching prevention education to children ages 3 to 12. Mel became a Child Safety Trainer to assist others to support and advocate for children’s rights in their day-to-day practice and interactions. She supports schools and early learning centres to implement a prevention education program through fun, engaging and age-appropriate activities. Mel believes in empowering parents and families to support their children to stay safe and develop positive relationships in today’s world and facilitates workshops for parents and community groups.

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