SPOT4YOU Therapist BiosFor a more in-depth look at SPOT4YOU's Occupational Therapists and Speech Pathologists.
Ashley Williams (OT Aide-QLD)
- Bachelor of Arts in Psychology (Minors: Neuroscience and French), Saint Anselm College (United States)
I am from the United States, where I completed my Bachelor’s Degree in psychology with a focus in neuroscience. For as long as I can remember, I wanted to find a career that would allow me to help others. I discovered my interest in Occupational Therapy when I completed an internship with a paediatric Occupational Therapy outpatient clinic. I am now currently enrolled in a Master of Occupational Therapy Studies at the University of Queensland.
Throughout my undergraduate studies, I volunteered weekly at UpReach Therapeutic Riding Centre, a non-profit equine facility serving individuals with physical and mental disabilities. As a volunteer, I worked alongside OTs, PTs, and instructors to help children and young adults achieve their therapy goals with the assistance of horses. Additionally, I worked with diverse populations of children in the community through other non-profit organisations and after school programs. Since graduating, I spent time as a camp instructor where I was responsible for supporting and managing a group of children in an educational, nature-oriented day camp.
For the last two years, I have worked as a Registered Behaviour Technician to provide applied behaviour analysis services to children with Autism Spectrum Disorder. In this role, I worked one-to-one with children in the home, community and at the company’s outpatient clinic. Under the supervision of a Board-Certified Behaviour Analyst, I implemented behaviour plans and skill development programs for clients. I was able to work with clients from ages two to 12. This role gave me experience with teaching a variety of skills, including toilet-training, social skills, fine and gross motor skills, and functional communication as well as managing challenging behaviours. I have experience with telehealth services, as well as with implementing the use of augmentative communication devices. Furthermore, I worked closely under the supervision of Speech Pathologists on the team to ensure a collaborative approach to services and the best possible care for clients. I am passionate about working with children and their families to help clients reach their potential and live fully.
Currently I am a graduate student at the University of Queensland, pursuing a Master of Occupational Therapy Studies degree. I am enthusiastic and always bring a positive attitude, and there is nothing I love more than putting a smile on a child’s face and watching them grow and achieve their goals!
Beatrice Ho (OT-NSW)
- Bachelor of Health Science (Nutrition and Dietetics), Queensland University of Technology
- Masters of Occupational Therapy Studies, The University of Queensland
I am a highly motivated Occupational Therapist who is passionate about helping people from all life stages to overcome barriers and to enable them to achieve their goals. I strongly believe in client-centred and evidence-based practice as well as a strength-based approach when working with all age groups, as everyone brings their own unique strength and potential based on their values and beliefs.
I have had clinical experience working with children from ages five months to 16 years of age and with complex needs ranging from Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD), Global Developmental Delays (GDD), chromosomal disorders and behavioural disorders. In the adult setting, I have had clinical experience in a diverse range of settings, including community rehabilitation, persistent pain management clinic and mental health case management.
My skills include conducting screening assessments, needs assessments, running skill development programs, providing individualised therapy in areas such as fine and gross motor, cognition, self-regulation, social skills and sensory needs as well as prescribing assistive devices. I have also conducted programs on fatigue management and falls prevention.
Beau Delmo (OT Aide-QLD)
- Bachelor of Exercise Science, Bond University
I have a Bachelor degree in Exercise Science and am currently studying for a Bachelor of Occupational Therapy degree at Griffith University. I have a strong passion for helping people and working with a client centred approach to support the client in achieving whatever goal they may have. My degree in Exercise Science has given me deep knowledge in human anatomy, neuromuscular physiology and how exercise affects the human body. As a result, this is complementing my increasing knowledge in Occupational Therapy and learning how to assist clients in achieving their goals.
I have completed one year of placement in a primary school, specifically working in a functional performance preparatory class. Muscle tone, coordination, fine motor skills, limb strength and cognitive abilities were all explored, and then a report was written to be passed on to the school as to how to improve occupational performance with their students. This year I will be attending placement in an aged care facility, in which I will work under the supervision of senior Occupational Therapists and aged care staff to help the clients achieve their occupational goals.
I also have experience in a sleep scientist role, in which overnight sleep studies were conducted with clients of all ages. The sleep studies allowed me to distinguish if a client suffered from a sleep apnoea, restless leg syndrome or suffered seizures while asleep. Recommendations were passed on to senior sleep scientists which were then discussed with the clients’ doctor.
Belinda Paton (OT Aide & SP Aide-QLD)
- Cert IV Allied Health Assistant
I am an independent Allied Health Assistant that has worked predominantly with children, but also adults, in supervised Occupational and Speech Therapy as well as Physiotherapy, Hydrotherapy and various class exercise programs such as Gait and Balance.
I have worked in paediatrics ages five to 16 where I gained experience as an Allied Health Assistant with various disorders and disabilities ranging from chromosomal and behavioural disorders to Autism Spectrum disorders and Global Developmental Delays, both in home and clinical environments.
I love what I do and enjoy following and implementing programs from therapists for fine and gross motor skills to my clients, to create an easier life for them through therapy. My background is art and design and, where possible, I try to incorporate creativity into programs. I also make many fun resources to use during my therapy sessions.
Brooke Selby (OT-NSW)
- Bachelor of Applied Science (Occupational Therapy), University of Sydney
I chose a course in Occupational Therapy because of my love of working with children, adults and families. I am dedicated to seeing clients with a variety of physical, intellectual and developmental disorders and helping them to reach their full potential. My passion for working with my clients has been furthered by the completion of a number of paediatric and community based adult jobs. Continuing my education and training is important to me and I am furthering my expertise with a number of courses including “The Traffic Jam in My Brain: A Sensory Processing Approach to Challenges Associated with Autism, ADHD, Learning and Behavioural Disorders” presented by Genevieve Jereb and “Learning Difficulties” presented by SPELD. Improving the life of an individual is at the heart of my approach to therapy. In particular, watching an individual master new skills, regain function and ultimately independence is the most rewarding part of my day.
Camille Martin (SP Aide-QLD)
- Bachelor of Psychological Science (Honours), The University of Queensland
I am a caring and patient individual who is on the exciting journey of becoming a Speech Pathologist - I am currently completing a Master of Speech Pathology degree at the University of Queensland. I have supervised experience in administering paediatric speech and language assessments to children from Prep to Grade 2. My supervised experiences in a school setting also include implementing both individual and group speech therapy sessions to children aged between four and six years. In addition to my paediatric experience, during my Honours thesis I visited multiple high schools in South East Queensland, where I engaged with large groups of adolescents. This research focused on school bullying, social anxiety and resilience.
My supervised experiences also extend to adults, where I completed a research scholarship at the Queensland Aphasia Rehabilitation Centre (QARC). During this time, I assisted in facilitating a safe space for people with aphasia to communicate and provide them with support over Zoom. At QARC, I was involved in research projects assessing the effectiveness of aphasia treatments and received training in Supported Conversation for Adults with Aphasia.
Whilst studying, I have worked in customer service and medical reception positions where I have assisted a diverse range of clients and patients for over five years. These roles, my clinical experience and research background, have contributed to the development of my passion for providing tailored and evidenced-based care to individuals at all stages of life.
Cherrie Gooden (SP Aide-NSW)
- Bachelor of Medical Biotechnology (Honours) – University of Wollongong
I am currently studying a Certificate IV in Allied Health Assistance and I am also working towards a Masters of Speech Pathology at Charles Sturt University. I believe that meaningful communication and social connection is a basic human need and I am passionate about helping people to overcome communication barriers and to allow them to lead happy and fulfilling lives.
Emily McCulloch (OT Aide-QLD)
I am currently undertaking a Bachelor of Occupational Therapy degree at Central Queensland University to which I am about to enter my fourth and final year. I have always been a nurturer by nature and love assisting people - which is why I chose Occupational Therapy as my career pathway as it allows me to help and enable people to live to their full potential, whilst also affording creative and engaging work.
Throughout my degree I have been introduced to a variety of areas of practice via placement inclusive of; primary schools, hospitals in the Brisbane region (hand therapy, neurorehabilitation and neurosurgery) and planning and running group therapy sessions for Centrecare CQ. Across these areas I have interacted with people of all ages and have heard a lot of amazing stories which would have to be one of my favourite parts of working in this field.
Paediatrics has always been an interest of mine. I love interacting with both children and their families to help them achieve their goals and aspirations, whilst encouraging engagement and facilitating independence.
Emily Post (OT Aide-NSW)
I am currently studying for a Bachelor of Occupational Therapy degree at Southern Cross University. I chose to pursue a career in Occupational Therapy as I love working with people and I am enthusiastic to help clients reach their goals throughout all stages of their life. I have supervised work experience in paediatrics as an Allied Health Aide in school, home and clinical environments working with clients with various disorders and disabilities. I am constantly learning new knowledge and taking new opportunities to help develop my skills to allow me to get the most out of this rewarding career in my journey to become a compassionate and supportive Occupational Therapist.
Emma Crook (OT Aide-QLD)
I am currently studying for a Bachelor of Occupational Therapy degree at the University of Queensland. I am excited by a career where I can help people to achieve their goals and work towards living their best life.
In my past employment and university experience I have worked with people throughout the lifespan from children, to older adults. I have supervised experience working with children living with disabilities with a wide variety of diagnoses. I have also gained experience working with adults in a hospital rehabilitation setting, focusing on increasing independence with daily tasks and working towards returning to valued roles.
I would describe myself as a friendly and empathetic person, and am passionate about providing excellent health care services to people of all abilities. I understand that every person and family is unique and know the importance of getting to know people as individuals.
Evengeline Ho (SP Aide-QLD)
I am a motivated 4th Year Speech Pathology student currently studying for my Bachelor of Speech Pathology at the University of Queensland, who exhibits high levels of passion and dedication to the work I do within the Speech Pathology practice. I have a strong focus on working towards client-centred care whilst using the best evidence-based practice that is suited for my clients, as I truly believe that everyone is different with their own unique strengths and values.
I have worked with the paediatric population since my first year of studying Speech Pathology, where I have conducted supervised individual and group therapy focusing on literacy improvement, as well as having to conduct daily parent feedback sessions, where I notify the progress of a child’s literacy development during the program. I have also had extensive supervised experience in the planning, creation and implementation of detailed therapy plans, progress notes, home programs, and assessment reports for my paediatric patients.
Furthermore, I have had extensive supervised experience working with the adult patient population focusing on TBI, stroke, and general medical complications. I have also had supervised experience with conducting language and acute swallowing assessments and screeners, with the ability to analyse and interpret results to form an effective plan for managing aphasia and dysphagia difficulties.
Freya Callway (SP Aide-QLD)
I am currently studying a Bachelor of Speech Pathology degree at the Australian Catholic University in Brisbane.
Throughout my studies I have had the opportunity to participate in supervised clinical experience for both children and adults in a variety of settings including schools, hospitals and rehabilitation centres. In all contexts I enjoy delivering person-centred care and evidence-based assessment and intervention for all.
I am passionate about providing holistic management for all children. My supervised clinical experience with children involves speech and language assessments and intervention on school aged children. This includes delivering the most appropriate assessment and individualising all management plans for each child’s needs. I have supervised experience in analysing formal and informal assessments and writing reports for faculty of the school and parents of the children. I have provided intervention for individual children and also group sessions for speech and language difficulties. I enjoy supporting and collaborating with children and their families to set and reach individual treatment goals. I am particularly interested in working with children who require further assistance to communicate with the use of Alternate and Augmentative Communication (AAC).
My supervised clinical experience with adults includes Speech Pathology services within both acute and rehabilitation settings. I have supervised experience completing assessment and intervention for the adult population including those with acquired or progressive speech and language difficulties. I also have supervised experience assessing and delivering individualised and evidence-based treatments to patients with swallowing difficulties within a hospital setting.
I am passionate about ensuring all patients receive the highest quality of care. I particularly enjoy working with elderly patients to build a supportive and respectful relationship within all aspects of management.
Georgia McLean (OT Aide-QLD)
- Bachelor of Health Science (Occupational Therapy pathway), Charles Darwin University
I completed my degree at the end of 2019 and am currently studying my Masters in Occupational Therapy. I am excited to pursue my career as an Occupational Therapist Aide with SPOT4YOU & SPOT4KIDS. During my studies, I worked in early childcare education as a support person and gained supervised experience working with children who had a disability, illness or had suffered an injury. I assisted in therapies including recreational, remedial, social and educational activities and regularly worked alongside other health professions in overall case management.
I have a genuine rapport and great enjoyment of working with children and young adolescents. It feels like a very natural progression to begin my career in this field and I look forward to assisting people of all ages to improve their quality of life and also to further developing my skills.
Ghada Aboleyah (SP Aide-VIC)
- Bachelor of Science, Psychology (Honours), Heriot-Watt University (Edinburgh, Scotland)
- Master of Speech and Language Therapy, Queen Margaret University (Edinburgh, Scotland)
I am currently completing my Speech Pathology Australia registration requirements and working under supervision.
I love working with both children and adults, and I am fluent in English and Arabic.
I have clinical experience working with children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), speech and language delays and disorders, and learning disabilities. I also have experience working in schools to promote and enhance oral language development for young children. This included working on early literacy and narrative skills.
I have worked closely with adults with aphasia, dysarthria, learning disabilities, voice disorders, and dysphagia. I have experience using different forms of Augmentative and Alternative communication (AAC) with both adults and children.
I have worked with clients in homes, hospitals, schools, nurseries, and nursing homes. Building positive relationships with my clients and their family members is a top priority for me. I have witnessed how a communication difficulty can affect the family members, so I am always eager to adopt a family centred approach, to holistically meet the needs of the individual.
Everyone has their own potential, and my job is to find ways to maximise this. Using evidence-based practice, I aim to enhance the individual’s ability to function in everyday life.
Jackie Stirling (SP-NSW)
- Bachelor of Education, (Primary), Southern Cross University
- Bachelor of Speech Pathology, Southern Cross University
I began my career in primary teaching but realised I wanted the opportunity to work more intensively with children and their families in the areas I was most passionate about i.e. speech, language and literacy. During my university studies I have had placements in schools supporting teachers and aids to adopt both a whole classroom and individualised approach to meet the needs of students with speech and language difficulties. I also have clinical experience assessing children with dysfluency (stuttering) and in treatment utilising the Lidcombe program, as well as working with preschool children targeting speech sounds and early language development. Therapy is proven to be more effective when it is fun and engaging, so when working with children and their families I tailor programs to match the strengths and interests of the child with routines designed to fit around family schedules.
I also completed clinical placements working with adults in acute hospital and residential aged care facilities providing dysphagia (swallowing) assessment and management, cognitive communication group therapy for residents with dementia, voice therapy and post-stroke language assessment and therapy. I enjoy seeing the change that supporting meaningful communication makes to the quality of life of not only the person with communication difficulties, but also for their family and loved ones.
I am committed to providing quality up to date evidence-based care and enjoy participating in ongoing professional development where I have completed training in Key word sign, paediatric feeding and understanding dementia.
Jasmin Shazad (OT-NSW)
- Bachelor of Health Sciences, Griffith University
- Graduate Entry Masters of Occupational Therapy, University of Queensland
I have been a part of the SPOT4YOU & SPOT4KIDS team for over ten years. My interest in Occupational Therapy and working with people with disabilities was first sparked throughout a volunteering experience at a Special Education Developmental Unit in my younger years. I have always had an interest and passion in working in paediatrics, particularly in Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD). My favourite part of being an Occupational Therapist is using a client and their family's strengths to see them realise their potential, and achieve increased confidence and independence in their skills and abilities.
I thoroughly enjoy working with children and their families and believe therapy and goals should be client-centred and client-driven. I work using a combination of both a "top-down" (functional) and a "bottom-up" (sensory) approach to therapy, incorporating the use of Evidence-Based Practice. I have had experience working with children and teenagers aged three months to 18 years with diagnoses including Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), Developmental Coordination Disorder (DCD)/Dyspraxia, Dyslexia, Cerebral Palsy, Down Syndrome, Intellectual Disabilities, Sensory Processing difficulties, Anxiety, and general developmental and learning difficulties.
I have liaised with families and schools to help implement home and school programs including, but not limited to, the following areas:
- Equipment Prescription
- Motor Skills and Developmental Skills
- Behavioural and Anxiety Management (including programs such as the 5 Point Scale and How Does Your Engine Run?)
- Handwriting programs
- Activities of Daily Living (ADLs), including dressing and feeding
- Sensory Programs
I have also worked with older clients (from 18 to 90 year olds) to assist them with achieving independence in the home and community setting through use of ADL assessments and programs, home modification recommendations and equipment prescription.
Jennie Brooks (OT-QLD)
- Bachelor of Science Degree (Honours) in Occupational Therapy, University of Brighton
- Post Graduate Diploma in Sensory Integration, University of Ulster
I am from the United Kingdom where I worked as a Clinical Specialist/Team Lead Paediatric Occupational Therapist.
Enabling children to reach their full potential and get the most out of life is my goal as an Occupational Therapist (OT). I thoroughly enjoy working with children, their families, and with schools, in problem solving and finding solutions to aid functional performance. I implement a range of approaches when assessing and treating children, which I tailor to each child’s individual needs.
I have extensive experience working with 0-19 year olds with diagnoses including; Autistic Spectrum Disorder, Sensory Processing Disorder, Cerebral Palsy, Developmental Coordination Disorder (Dyspraxia), intellectual difficulties, Handwriting Disorder, Attention Deficit Disorder; degenerative, genetic and other neurological conditions.
I have completed additional training in Sensory Integration Therapy, Postural Management, Equipment Provision, hand therapy and splinting, handwriting, and approaches to working with children with DCD.
I also have experience working with adult clients. Alongside my paediatric role I worked in a rehabilitation hospital delivering therapy to adults with neurological diagnoses, including Stroke and Acquired Brain Injury. Furthermore, I have worked as an OT in aged care (both hospital and community settings), the emergency department, hospital-based medical rehabilitation, and in trauma orthopaedics.
Jordan Thompson (OT Aide-VIC)
- Cert IV Allied Health Assistant
I have extensive local and international experience in working with children across varied environments, including schools, homes and in specialised therapeutic settings.
I have a great passion for working in group settings with children, in particular, focussing on areas such as social skills. During my time working in Allied Health, I have worked autonomously and alongside many Allied Health professionals in a supervised environment with differing client diagnoses and goals.
Kaleigh Montalti (OT Aide-NSW)
- Children’s Services - Certificate lll
Spending the last eight years in the paediatric practice environment, I have had the opportunity to work in multiple school locations throughout the Illawarra region, working and facilitating children aged from four years to 12 years of age. I’m currently undertaking studies at Western Sydney University seeking my degree in Occupational Therapy.
My passion and main interest is working with clients with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD). I have supervised experience working with children with disabilities and complex behavioural diagnoses including but not limited to:
Cerebral palsy (CP), Down Syndrome, Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease Type 1A (CMT), Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD), Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorders (ADHD), Attention Deficit Disorders (ADD), Oppositional Defiant Disorders (ODD) and Asperger Syndrome (AS).
This has included behavioural/sensory diets, working on fine and gross motor skills and sensory systems. I have also had the opportunity to work with families and teachers from support units, including learning support officers, which has given me the skills to implement Guidance Support Plans (GSP).
Ongoing supervised placement opportunities have also enhanced my development and knowledge through real life experiences and I look forward to a continuance of this activity.
I am excited to be working in this very worthwhile environment, whilst further developing my skill base and providing care in a field that I’m very passionate and enthusiastic about.
Kasey Gill (OT Aide & SP Aide-VIC)
- Diploma of Education, The University of Melbourne
- Bachelor of Science, The University of Melbourne
I am currently studying a Master of Speech Pathology at Charles Sturt University. I am enjoying the knowledge and supervised experience I am acquiring with all Range of Practice areas including language, speech, swallowing, voice and fluency.
I have worked with children and adolescents in my previous role as a teacher. I have also gained valuable experience as the Co-ordinator of the Program for Students with Disabilities. I am experienced with providing educational support to students with Intellectual Disability, Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), Cerebral Palsy (CP), Physical Disability and Hearing Impairment. In this role I embraced a holistic approach to student learning by collaborating with parents, health professionals and classroom teachers to ensure students were well-supported.
I utilise a family-centred, culturally responsive approach when supporting clients to reach their goals.
Kathleen Oliver (OT Aide-NSW)
- Certificate IV Allied Health Assistance (Occupational Therapy), TAFE NSW
- Diploma of Community Services, TAFE NSW
I am passionate about my career where I can work in a person-centred context to assist people to build capacity, achieve their goals and work towards living their best life.
I have experience working with children living with disabilities as a School Learning and Support Officer. I have also gained experience working with adults in a hospital rehabilitation setting, focusing on increasing independence with daily tasks. Previously, I have had an extensive career working directly with a diversity of people and in community services in a variety of contexts.
I would describe myself as an open, friendly and empathetic person and am passionate about providing excellent health care services to all people. I understand that every person and family is unique and know the importance of getting to know people as individuals.
Katie Stanko (OT Aide-QLD)
I am currently studying a Bachelor of Occupational Therapy (Honours) degree at the University of Queensland.
I have a long withstanding passion and a holistic view towards patient healthcare and found myself drawn towards the Occupational Therapy practice. As such, I have a great love of patient-centred care and working with individuals to achieve the goals that are most meaningful to them.
I have supervised experience working with individuals living with Cerebral Palsy and their families in developing strategies to overcome barriers to engagement in social and recreational activities, as well as wider community engagement. Through my university studies, I have recently completed a four-month supervised practical placement at a hospital-based Hand Therapy Clinic. Here, I had the opportunity to work directly with patients to clinically treat a multitude of hand-based conditions/injuries, as well as work in collaboration with patients to address short or long-term impacts on daily living.
I have further experience addressing sensory needs with adolescents at a Vocational High School in Kingston who presented with mental health, cognitive or learning difficulties that impacted upon their engagement in mainstream schooling. Additionally, I have experience with Prep students and assessing their engagement and participation in the school environment, as well as evaluating their general coordination, pencil/scissor and other fine motor manipulation skills, social skills, and self-management.
Kim Lavery (SP Aide-NSW)
- Bachelor of Arts, University of Central Queensland
- Graduate Diploma of Education, University of New England (UNE)
- Secondary English, University of New England (UNE)
- Bachelor of Special Education, University of New England (UNE)
I worked for 20 years in youth employment and education with early school leavers, unemployed young adults and young offenders, specialising in literacy and life skills. From 2004 to 2019 I taught in a public primary school, in class as well as with small groups and individual students who needed extra support or extension in reading, writing and spelling. I have had experience both professionally and personally and working under supervision with children and adults who have speech and language delays, physical and intellectual difficulties, and difficulty speaking due to disease or trauma. For many years I also volunteered with the State Emergency and Rural Fire Services, teaching first aid to people from all walks of life and all ages.
I believe rapport and healthy connections are key factors in communication and work closely with clients, their families and health professionals. I am passionate about helping people develop skills and confidence to thrive, not just survive, in our society. Following the programs developed by Speech Pathologists, I practise diversity in my approaches to provide client support with enough flexibility to cater for individual interests and needs.
When not working I enjoy reading, sewing, snow skiing and growing succulents.
Lana Welsh (OT Aide-VIC)
- Certificate IV in Allied Health Assistance, RMIT University, Melbourne
- Bachelor of Music Performance (Major in Song Writing), Collarts, Melbourne
Originating from Far North Queensland, I had aims of becoming a musician. Moving to Melbourne at 18 to follow my dreams, I soon found myself in a new and exciting environment. Although I completed my Bachelor in Performing Arts, I found myself wishing to put my time and effort into helping people, specifically children and those living with disabilities.
I completed my Certificate IV in Allied Health Assistance in 2020 with a new passion for the health department. From a young age I have worked alongside children – albeit with the purpose of entertainment and joy utilising music and performance. For example, preparing for recitals and competitions, assistant cheerleading coach for the junior team (ages 5-15), during which time I was responsible for providing a safe environment for the children to learn and develop their skills in. I believe I have a loving and nurturing nature best suited to a profession within paediatrics.
During my placement whilst completing my Certificate IV, I experienced working alongside people of all ages and ability, providing supervised assistance in their physiotherapy and education on their assisted living devices. Working in both the community and centre based practice provided me with the ability to make connections with patients in the community or in the wards. I was able to lead patient sessions whilst building great rapport with my patients and being rewarded with their growth and development throughout the weekly sessions. This direct and positive impact in another’s life solidified, for me, the desire to work within the allied health profession. I have found myself drawn to the health care industry as I find myself happiest when being able to positively impact another’s life.
On reflection of my time during placement, I believe I am best suited to work with children, where I can also use my fun, uplifting and bubbly personality. My musical and creative nature also provides me a unique perspective on how to engage with children in a safe and imaginative manner. Furthermore, I wish to create better lives and experiences for children with disabilities, having a long lasting impact on those of the next generation.
Lara Page (SP Aide-QLD)
I am currently studying for a Bachelor of Speech Pathology (Honours) degree at the University of Queensland.
I am an outgoing, energetic and hard-working individual. Some of my interests include languages, the outdoors, surfing and living an all-round active life. I have had supervised work experience with children with disabilities and helping them express their needs and improve their overall communication by using Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC). I have a passion for life and helping others.
Laura Taranuik (OT Aide-NSW)
- Bachelor of Clinical Exercise Physiology; Masters in Physiotherapy, University of New England
I am a highly motivated, compassionate and passionate Occupational Therapist Aide, currently undertaking my Bachelor of Clinical Exercise Physiology with a masters in Physiotherapy.
My background and in-depth knowledge in Human Movement and Exercise Physiology in clinical, private and public setting gives me an in-depth understanding of human anatomy, neuromuscular physiology and how exercise and movement positively affects the human body physically and mentally. My knowledge in Occupational Therapy as an Aide, and continued education in this field, allows me to deliver exceptional service and care to each person I work with.
I focus on a client-centred approach in order to achieve the best results and the individual goals of the client. My work is backed by evidence-based practices along with a strengths-based approach to learning. I understand each client is an individual with his or her own strengths and potential. Working together with my client, under supervision, I am able to help overcome objections and hurdles in order to help my clients reach their highest capabilities.
I have worked in a health care setting for over six years, predominantly through the NDIS networks. My experience spans across a wide variety of ages and abilities, having worked with both adults and children. My work has included but is not limited to monitoring health, implementing change, addressing wellbeing and assessing and improving the physical and mental capabilities of my clients. Many of my previous clients young and old, have had physical and/or mental disabilities that have required specific programs and interventions. I have prescribed, implemented and monitored such programs from inception stages right through to completion. I have experience working as an Occupational Therapy Aide with complex needs ranging from Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD), Global Developmental Delays (GDD), Chromosomal Disorders, Behavioural Disorders and Mental Illness. I also have experience and am comfortable working in a diverse range of settings, including 1:1, Group and Community Clinical Exercise, Rehabilitation, Chronic Pain Management and Mental Health Case Management.
I strongly believe each individual has the capability to succeed and through connection, communication and consistency, I am able to help my client achieve their goals and create independence, confidence and pride in the work and tasks that they undertake daily. I look forward to working with you or your child.
Linda Smith (SP-NSW & QLD)
- Bachelor of Speech Pathology, Southern Cross University
The field of Speech Pathology offers an opportunity to have a positive impact on an individual’s life, the lives of their families and their wider community.
Throughout my studies, I have gained clinical experience in a variety of settings working with clients whose ages ranged from two to 102.
My paediatric experience included placements in child care centres, government health clinics, hospital out-patient clinics and home environments. During this time, I conducted assessments and provided family education and individualised therapy to children with developmental delays, speech and language disorders, stuttering (dysfluency), autism spectrum disorders, apraxia, learning disabilities and intellectual impairments. I enjoy using evidence-based client centered approaches to support achievement of client goals. I believe a positive approach to therapy plays a big role in a child’s participation.
My placement experience with adults included placements in acute and rehabilitation hospital wards, residential aged care facilities and health clinics. These covered a variety of diagnoses including traumatic brain injury, voice deficits, swallowing issues (dysphagia), dementia, Motor Neuron Disease, Parkinson’s Disease, stroke, dysarthria, aphasia, group therapy, cognitive communication disorders, and alternative and augmentative communication methods including communication boards and electronic devices. I enjoy working with elderly clients, their partners and carers to provide person-centered care with patience and respect.
Lisa Scuglia (SP-NSW)
- Bachelor of Health Sciences and Master of Speech Pathology, Griffith University
- Bachelor of Human Movement Science and Education, Southern Cross University
I have taught in both public and private high schools in my subject area of Personal Development, Health and Physical Education. In my role as a Speech Pathologist, I am passionate about providing high quality and holistic service to all adult and paediatric clients and their family and carers. Since working in the area of Speech Pathology, I have been able to work with a number of children in the settings of community, education and mental health. I have a keen interest in working with school aged children and have experience in speech and language delays and disorders. When working with clients I use a combination of modern and research-based approaches in order to cater for each client’s individual needs.
Megan Bale (OT Aide-NSW)
I am currently studying for a Bachelor of Occupational Therapy degree at Southern Cross University.
I have always had a great passion for the health industry, specifically Occupational Therapy, as it is a client-centred profession which incorporates patient’s goals within therapy. This is why I chose to study Occupational Therapy.
Through supervised work placements at university I have had the opportunity to work in hospitals, in the rehabilitation, medical and surgical wards. I thoroughly enjoyed this opportunity and the knowledge I gained. The highlight for me was being able to make a difference in patients’ everyday lives whether it was through rehabilitation therapy exercises and daily living activities or home modifications.
I also have experience in working in aged care as a personal carer, which I loved. This job taught me how important communication is with patients and gave me my passion for helping others and the health industry.
Working in paediatrics has always been my dream job. Being able to assist a child to achieve their goals and reach their potential through therapy gives me great satisfaction.
I am a mother of two children. This role has taught me how to relate to children and be able to bring the best out in them. The benefit of play and sensory stimulation is important in a child’s development. Being a mother has really reinforced my passion for paediatrics.
I thrive on being able to help patients achieve their goals, and the feeling of when I have helped make a difference in someone’s life really drives me to continue my role.
Nick Stevens (OT Aide-QLD)
I am currently studying a Bachelor of Occupational Therapy degree at Griffith University on the Gold Coast. I love working with people and have a strong passion for supporting people to achieve their individual goals. Coming from a sporting background, I have always had an interest in the health industry. This has enabled me to develop my knowledge in human anatomy and physiology as well as complementing my increasing understanding of the importance of occupations to an individual.
I have completed a supervised placement in a primary school working specifically with children in the lower grades. This experience allowed me to assess various physical, cognitive and emotional factors and the impacts on occupational performance. This year I will be undertaking further supervised placements, under the guidance of senior Occupational Therapists, to help assist clients in achieving their occupational goals.
As an Occupational Therapy Aide, I am constantly aiming to develop my knowledge and skills whilst helping provide care and support in a field that I am passionate about.
Oliver Sio (SP-QLD)
- Bachelor of Speech Pathology (Honours), The University of Queensland
I am a multilingual Speech Pathologist, fluent in English, Cantonese and Mandarin.
I have a passion to help clients with communication and swallowing difficulties in their activities of daily living and enhance their quality of life. I have experience working within acute paediatric and adult hospital settings, where I provided holistic Speech Pathology services to clients and their families in a multidisciplinary approach. My clinical experience also involves providing Speech Pathology assessments and interventions using technology, including iPads, laptops, mobile phones and e-readers to assist adult clients with aphasia to communicate with their families and friends. I have also provided speech, language and literacy services via tele-rehabilitation to school-aged children in a school setting in rural Queensland.
My specific areas of interest include the language development of children with hearing loss, and intervention approaches for adults with cognitive communication disorders.
Olivia Trixner (SP Aide-QLD)
I am currently in my final year of a Bachelor of Speech Pathology with Honours at the Australian Catholic University. I am passionate about studying Speech Pathology as this field allows me to make a difference in the way people communicate and experience their daily lives.
My studies and clinical placements have allowed me to gain clinical experience in a wide variety of settings with clients of all ages. I am equally passionate about delivering Speech Pathology services to adults and children.
My current supervised paediatric placements have allowed me to gain critical Speech Pathology skills required for working with children in private practice settings and primary school settings. During these placements I conducted screeners, assessments, and provided holistic and individualised therapy to children with a range of speech and language disorders. I believe that it is important to work closely with a child’s parents and teachers to formulate specific goals that can be used to guide evidence-based client and family-centred therapy approaches. I enjoy using engaging tasks and activities to encourage a child’s participation in therapy.
I have practical adult experience, under supervision, in hospital rehabilitation wards and outpatient settings. In these settings I have gained experience in administering screeners and formalised assessments, setting client-centred goals, and delivering personalised and comprehensive individual and group therapy to clients with a range of communication disorders. I primarily worked with patients who had suffered from a stroke or traumatic brain injury, and as a result suffered from a range of acquired speech and language disorders and swallowing difficulties. I believe in incorporating functional tasks into therapy sessions to ensure patients are motivated and working towards a larger goal.
Renae Keast (OT-QLD)
- Bachelor of Occupational Therapy, Southern Cross University
I am a highly motivated Occupational Therapist with a passion for supporting people to reach their full potential and achieve the goals that are meaningful to them.
I have experience working with children from ages six months to 16 years of age, providing individualised therapy in areas such as self-regulation, fine and gross motor skills, toileting, social skills and handwriting.
In the adult setting I have experience in conducting a range of cognitive, neurological and functional assessments and providing therapy for functional rehabilitation of a range of conditions including stroke and brain injury. I have also worked within the aged care setting, providing therapy for chronic pain management, oedema management and rehabilitative therapy to improve independence and safety of the elderly through maintaining their functional mobility.
I work collaboratively with children and their families to determine their strengths, needs and goals, whilst ensuring therapy is tailored, play-based, engaging and fun.
Rukaya Taleb (OT & SP Aide-VIC)
- Certificate in Youth Services
- Bachelor of Science, Major in Neuroscience, University of Melbourne
I am in my final year studying for my Bachelor of Speech Pathology degree at the Australian Catholic University.
I have witnessed many varied communication difficulties within different contexts, but my passion is working with community and families. I have been working in the community setting for over seven years, with experience dealing with different cultural groups and family dynamics. l am fluent in Arabic and am equally passionate about working in paediatric and adult speech therapy services. I aim to bring my experience, together with the knowledge gained throughout my studies, to provide holistic and compassionate care. Furthermore, I enjoy using meaningful and engaging means to help people reach their full potential.
I have worked under supervision in clinics, schools and community centres, supporting children who had speech, language, fluency (stuttering) and voice difficulties. I have also worked in clinics and aged care settings with adults who had swallowing, fluency, voice, speech and language concerns. I have personal experience with children who have Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), and children and adults who are deaf and also with associated communication difficulties. Throughout my supervised practical experience, I have been involved in conducting group therapy and individual sessions to both paediatric and adult patients. These sessions have occurred across clinics, hospitals and schools.
Sarah Perazzolo (SP Aide-QLD)
- Bachelor of Speech Sciences, University College London
- Graduate Diploma in Education (Early Years), Queensland University of Technology
I am currently working towards regaining my membership to Speech Pathology Australia.
I originally qualified as a Speech and Language Pathologist in the United Kingdom. Since then, I have worked as a Speech and Language Pathologist in the UK and in Australia, specialising in supporting children with a wide range of communication difficulties. Areas of difficulties have included: motor speech; fluency; articulation/phonology; receptive and expressive language and semantic/pragmatic language. I have provided one-on-one intervention, group therapy and training workshops for parents and teachers and I have worked in a variety of settings including special schools, mainstream primary and high schools, early childhood development clinics and community clinics.
I gained my Graduate Diploma in Education in 2009 and have spent the last 12 years teaching in special schools, mainstream schools and most recently in a specialist school for children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). Teaching has provided me with a deep knowledge of the everyday social, organisational and language demands put on children in the school environment and has left me with a passion in supporting children to develop the specific communication skills they need to access both the social and academic aspects of school life.
My specialist work as a teacher of students with ASD has given me a broad range of expertise in using evidence-based practice to support, engage and teach children presenting with a range of language, and social communication challenges.
Moving forward, I am keen to merge all my experience as a Speech and Language Pathologist and a teacher together and, under the guidance and supervision provided by the SPOT4YOU & SPOT4KIDS Speech and Language Pathologists, I am motivated and excited to provide a quality service to all children and families that I am privileged enough to work with.
Sirena Lam (OT Aide-QLD)
I am currently studying a Bachelor of Occupational Therapy (Honours) at the University of Queensland (St Lucia), with an expected graduation date of 19 July 2021.
As part of my studies, I have extensive supervised experience as follows:
* UQ’s Life Skills Assessment Clinic:
- Administered a range of Occupational Therapy (OT) assessment tools for children presenting with ADHD and reduced muscle tone.
- Beery Buktenica Developmental Test of Visual-Motor Integration (VMI)
- Behaviour Rating Inventory of Executive Function (Second edition) (BRIEF-2)
- Movement Assessment Battery for Children 2 (Movement ABC)
- McMaster’s Handwriting Assessment (2nd Edition)
- Handwriting Without Tears
- Here’s How I Write Self-Assessment
- Clinical Observations for Gross Motor Movement and Ocular Motor Movements
* Inala Indigenous Health Centre:
- 10-week block of joint therapy sessions (OT and SP) for children in the Indigenous community (referred by paediatricians). Children presented with ADHD, hyperactive behaviour, global developmental delay, social anxiety and emotional and behavioural dysregulation
- Provided interventions for OT goals involving:
- Self-regulation (emotional, sensory, behavioural)
- Self and emotional awareness
- Social skills
- Fine (handwriting and scissor skills) and gross motor skills (school readiness)
- Goal setting tools administered: Modified COPM
- OT assessment tools administered: Movement ABC
* St Brendan’s Catholic Primary School:
- Delivered individual joint therapy sessions (OT and SP) to observe and develop fine motor, self-regulation and speech skills. Progress notes and reports written to advocate for referral to paediatricians for diagnosis and funding.
- Assessment tools passed to parents/teachers: Sensory Profile 2 and Sensory Processing Measure
* Autism Qld:
- Shadowed OT and SP at the ECI clinic (approximately seven children)
* Paediatric fieldwork’s during degree:
- Visited schools to deliver group therapy programs with the objective to observe and develop gross motor, fine motor, social and self-regulation skills in school settings
* At Autism Qld, worked (with supervision) with adult’s presenting with ASD in group programs. My role:
- Goal setting using Adult and Adolescent Goal Setting Tool (AAGST)
- Rapport building while prompting and modelling social skills (e.g. conversational turn taking, greetings and goodbyes, body language, communicating thoughts and feelings, calling somebody by their name) and encouraging involvement in group games (grading)
- Participated in inclusive environment projects (gender inclusion and inclusive space)
- Facilitated group programs [i.e. Let’s Talk Dating, Studio G (face to face and online), Allies and Adventures and Teen Tech Shed]
Stephanie Charlesworth (SP-QLD)
- Bachelor of Speech Pathology, Australian Catholic University
I have experience as a paediatric Speech Pathologist seeing clients in a variety of settings including their home, school, childcare centre and clinic. My experience includes speech and language delays, literacy delays and developing pragmatic skills. As a student, I also had experience working with adults in an aged care and hospital setting including assessment and intervention of dysphagia, aphasia and dysarthria.
I have a strong passion for working with paediatrics. I believe in the importance of working closely with parents, teachers and other support staff to provide the best possible outcome for clients.
Susan Laughton (OT-NSW)
- BHSc (Hons) Occupational Therapy, Leeds University
I am an experienced Occupational Therapist (OT) with a kind and positive nature. I love being an OT and enjoy working with children and adults (and their families and carers), to identify individual client’s strengths, as well as working on problem solving and setting and achieving goals. I try hard to ensure therapy is fun and tailored to each individual child or adult.
I have experience working with children who have autistic spectrum disorder, sensory processing disorder, developmental-delay, downs syndrome, ADHD and other neurological conditions. I have supported children in developing their fine and gross motor, visual motor integration, visual perception and handwriting skills. I have also supported children to increase their independence in feeding, dressing, toileting, emotional regulation and social skills.
My experience with adult clients has also been very rewarding. I have worked with adults and adolescents who experience mild to severe mental health problems and learning disabilities including clinical depression, schizophrenia, bipolar affective disorder, personality disorder and parents who have learning disabilities. I have also worked with adults who have complex medical needs and physical challenges.
I love learning, and enjoy continually updating my knowledge and skills through attending various professional courses and workshops, reading relevant literature and engaging in professional discussions with colleagues. I also enjoy up-skilling others and have delivered training and presentations to doctors, nurses, teachers, carers and other allied health professionals.
My aim is to support clients to enjoy a meaningful life and meet their full potential.
Sylvia Sharrocks (OT Aide-NSW)
- Cert 4 in Allied Health Assistance
- Cert 3 in Education Support
- Cert 4 In Disability
- Cert 4 in Mental Health (Non-Clinical)
I have worked as an Allied Health Assistant in a Disability Community Service in Queensland for over 12 years, working with both children and adults. As a support worker, I have assisted in implementing programs for children with autism and learning disabilities.
I have also worked in aged care supporting adults with a disability and elderly people with dementia. I have also provided in-home assistance, taking clients to appointments and on social outings.
I love to work in the local community with children or adults who need help and I have had lot of experience as an Allied Health Assistant in supporting them to reach their goals.
Tegan Noonan (OT Aide-NSW)
I am currently a mature aged university student studying for a Bachelor of Occupational Therapy degree at Western Sydney University. This area of study really stood out to me as I have always thoroughly enjoyed helping others and working with people.
During my studies I have gained some clinical knowledge in working with both children and adults through work experience. I have worked on a community-based project which focused on developing cognitive skills in toddlers and infants at playgroups in a low socio economic area. I thoroughly enjoyed this as I had the opportunity to think creatively when designing games that would meet the aims of the project. I have also had supervised work experience in home modifications, mostly for clients over 65 who needed major bathroom modifications.
I am a mother and enjoy spending my free time with my son and watching him grow and am always looking for ways in which I can assist him with his development through play. I am fascinated in all areas of a child’s development and am eager to work with children in Occupational Therapy as my career, once I graduate.
Thu Tran (OT-QLD)
- Bachelor of Occupational Therapy (Honours), University of Queensland
I am a highly passionate Occupational Therapist who is devoted to helping my clients achieve their goals. I believe that everyone has their own set of unique strengths, preferences and needs. When working with clients and their families, I aim to customise strategies to suit them. I have been fortunate to have a diverse range of clinical experiences including working with children, adults and families in community, hospital and private practice settings. I am especially skilled in performing screening assessments, running skill development programs and providing individualised therapy in areas such as fine motor, self-management, emotion regulation, social skills, gross motor, and academic skills. I believe in providing a supportive environment and enjoy using meaningful and engaging means to help people reach their full potential.
Tinika Gillespie (OT Aide-QLD)
I am currently completing a Bachelor of Occupational Therapy through the Australian Catholic University (due to be completed in November 2023). Prior to this I spent 20 years as a qualified veterinary nurse, where I was also involved with training both veterinarians and veterinary nurses.
My interest in Occupational Therapy stems from wanting to see all people reach their full potential in life. Through my studies, both in Australia and New Zealand, I have developed a passion for paediatrics as I find working with children and their families both rewarding and engaging. I have completed several Tony Attwood courses online specifically about working with children with Autism. Previously I have volunteered with Pets in the Park, Riding for the Disabled (NZ) and I am currently learning AUSLAN sign language.
Zia Hurtado (SP Aide-QLD)
I am currently in my 4th year of studying for a Bachelor of Speech Pathology at the Australian Catholic University at the Brisbane campus.
Throughout my studies and other opportunities, I have had the privilege of working with adult and paediatric clients. Over the years, as I have progressed with my studies, my passion for Speech Pathology, helping others and enhancing another's communication skills continue to grow.
I have had work and supervised clinical experience working with children from ages 4 to 12 years of age. I had previously worked as a Before and After school educator, where I gained the experience to work with children with Behavioural and Developmental disorders. As for my clinical experience, I have conducted individual and group therapy in a school setting where I provided a holistic client-centred approach to intervention. When I am conducting a session, I am driven by the knowledge that I play a key role in supporting the children and their family to achieve their goals.
My experience with the adult population ranges within the clinic setting and delivering supervised therapy over telehealth. I worked with adult clients in the clinic with various diagnoses from Dysphagia, Cerebral Palsy, Parkinson's Disease, Aphasia, Stroke and voice disorders, where I delivered individual and group therapy sessions. I have experience working within a multi-disciplinary team, liaising with other Speech Pathologists, Physiotherapists, referring physicians and Occupational Therapists when necessary. Working with such a diverse caseload, I prioritised always delivering evidence-based interventions. I found it equally important to work collaboratively with the client and their friends and families to ensure that I provided the best quality of care.
I have completed additional training in the SPEAK OUT! Program and LOUD Crowd and in the process to be a provider.
Whether they are a paediatric or an adult client, I believe that effectively communicating is an essential skill and gift for one to have. I am always so grateful when I can support anyone in their journey, as it is truly rewarding.
Zoe Cox (OT Aide-QLD)
I am currently completing a Bachelor of Occupational Therapy at Australian Catholic University (due for completion in 2023). I was drawn to Occupational Therapy by my passion for helping people overcome challenges to reach their full potential. I have a particular interest in paediatrics as I love working with children and helping them achieve their goals.
I have participated in multiple volunteering opportunities where I have worked with primary school children, including working with children living with a disability or learning difficulty. These experiences, in addition to my current studies, have enabled me to gain valuable understanding of childhood development and skills in engaging with children in effective and enjoyable ways.
I have experience working in the mobility team at a pharmacy, allowing me to expand my knowledge of mobility aids and home modifications. My duties as a pharmacy assistant have required me to engage sensitively with a wide range of people. Through my studies I have completed a supervised placement at the Princess Alexandra hospital in the cancer unit giving me an insight into oedema management and home modifications following hospital discharge. Throughout the last years of my study, I will complete multiple placements to further my knowledge and experience in a range of fields ultimately helping clients work towards their goals.
I would describe myself as a confident, reliable, empathetic and kind person who is passionate about providing excellent client-centred care. I also have strong skills in organisation, time management and communication. Through my work as an Occupational Therapist Aide, I am excited to get to know people, help them achieve their goals and work towards living their best life.