Our Staff
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Our Staff

Leadership Team

Vivi – Executive Director

Vivi Germanos-KoutsounadisVivi migrated to Australia from Greece in 1954 when she was 9 years old. As a result of her migration experiences she determined to dedicate her career to becoming an advocate for multiculturalism, social justice and human rights for migrants and refugees. Vivi went on to obtain a BA with a major in Psychology and a Postgraduate Diploma in Counseling from the University of NSW. In 1979 she founded Ethnic Community Services Co-opeartive (formerly Ethnic Child Care, Family and Community Services Co-operative Ltd) in Sydney where she currently serves as Executive Director. Vivi has received a number of national awards including: Order of Australia Medal (1983), the Human Rights Medal (1998) and the UNSW Alumni Award (1999 and 2003). In 2012, she was appointed as one of the People of Australia Ambassadors by the Australian Multicultural Council.

Shikha – Programs Manager

Shikha Shikha has over 22 years of experience in managing aged care, disability and children’s services projects. She holds a Master of Arts in Philosophy, a Certificate IV in Training and Assessment and a Certificate III in Children’s Services. Shikha’s extensive experience and knowledge of the community sector led her to the position on Programs Manager, a role in which she wears a many number of hats. On a day-to-day basis she oversees the planning and implementation of project strategies, supports and supervises the team of staff, consults with clients, liaises with Departments and funding bodies and much much more. Given her passion for community and strong commitment to the principles of social justice, she feels very fortunate to have built a career in the social welfare sector.


Administration

Abella – Secretary

AbellaBorn and raised in the Philippines, Abella migrated to Australia in 1987. Prior to leaving the Philippines she obtained a Bachelors Degree in Dentistry and worked as a dentist for several years. She is fluent in Tagalog, Cebuano and English. Abella joined the ECSC team as a secretary in 1992 and over the years has become the unofficial face of the organisation. She is well known and loved by all of our staff, clients and community networks.

Donna – Payroll Officer

DonnaDonna migrated to Australia from the Philippines in 2001 and shortly after commenced working with ECSC. Prior to leaving the Philippines she worked in the Import/Export Division of the Philippines’ Department of Trade and Industry for 13 years. Donna is fluent in English, Tagalog and her native dialect Ilocano. She studied Hotel and Restaurant Management in the Philippines and also has a Certificate II in Office Administration. On several occasions Donna has fulfilled the role of MRS Coordinator and in addition to her role as Administrative Project Officer she also provides regular support to the Programs Manager and Accounts Officer. Donna is a highly valued member of ECSC team for her reliability, capability and willingness to share her skills where required.

Chris Chai – Accounts Officer


Marketing, Communications & Media

MirellaMirella – Consultant Business Development and Growth

Mirella is a communications specialist with over 20 years of experience across a number of industries including: utilities, infrastructure development, workers compensation, manufacturing, health, children’s services and disability. She has extensive experience in the non-for-profit and government sectors. Having begun her career as a project officer for ECSC, Mirella is committed to seeing the organisation prosper.

Efrosini – Communications and Media Officer

EfrosiniEfrosini has a journalism background, having worked in commercial media for over 5 years and has a BA (Media and Communications) from the University of Sydney. With a major in Modern Greek, Efrosini is a strong supporter of Bilingualism, Language Learning/Acquisition. She has worked in the past with the Greek Community of NSW to deliver a Bilingual Youth Radio Program and has sat on the organising committees for two of the largest annual multicultural events: The Greek Festival of Sydney and Greek Film Festival.  A strong community spirit, passion for social justice issues and a love of her own Greek and Cypriot cultures and languages has led her to put her marketing, communication and social media skills to good use at ECSC, working within the Bicultural Support Program.


Multicultural Disability Services

Ingrid – Manager, Multicultural Disability Services

IngridIngrid is a Social Worker who is passionate about working with communities to advocate for human rights and equal opportunities.  Growing up in multicultural Australia as the granddaughter of Dutch migrants gave her a passion for multiculturalism and diversity. She studied Social Work and Development Studies at UNSW and worked in community development, health and the disability sector before joining ECSC in 2013. Ingrid currently works as the Disability Services Manager, supporting a range of teams and projects which promote the rights of CALD people with disability, their families, carers and communities.


Multicultural Respite Services

Nicole – Co-ordinator, Multicultural Respite Services

Lily – Field Officer, Multicultural Respite Services

LilyLily graduated as a rehabilitation counsellor from the University of Sydney in 1997. For the following 9 years she worked as personal carer for the Southern Sydney Therapy Centre in Miranda before joining ECSC in 2006. When Lily started out at ECSC she worked across two programs: Multicultural Respite Services and Bicultural Support. Over time she became heavily involved in her work as a respite worker for MRS and in 2011 she was promoted to the position of Assistant Field Officer (AFO). In her role as AFO, Lily leads the program outings and vacation care, supervises staff, and oversees all incident and risk reporting.

Donna – Administrative Project Officer, Multicultural Respite Services/Accounts

DonnaDonna migrated to Australia from the Philippines in 2001 and shortly after commenced working with ECSC. Prior to leaving the Philippines she worked in the Import/Export Division of the Philippines’ Department of Trade and Industry for 13 years. Donna is fluent in English, Tagalog and her native dialect Ilocano. She studied Hotel and Restaurant Management in the Philippines and also has a Certificate II in Office Administration. On several occasions Donna has fulfilled the role of MRS Coordinator and in addition to her role as Administrative Project Officer she also provides regular support to the Programs Manager and Accounts Officer. Donna is a highly valued member of ECSC team for her reliability, capability and willingness to share her skills where required.


Multicultural Children’s Services

Meni – Manager, Multicultural Children’s Services

Mani Meni has a Bachelor of Science in Psychology (Honours) from the University of NSW and 30 years of experience working in Early Childhood and Child Care Services. Her commitment to and passion for CALD Multicultural Children’s Services is reflected in the various programs and projects she’s worked on throughout her career. Prior to the establishment of Bicultural Support in 2006, Meni worked as a SUPS Worker for Auburn Council, Manager of the Casual Ethnic Workers Pool and Programs Manager at ECSC. She also coordinated the SUPS Program – Bankstown Early Integration & Networking Group (BEING) at the Bankstown Community Resource Group for 13 years. Meni enjoys the challenges and rewards of managing Multicultural Children’s Services which incorporates the unique, hands on, statewide human resource program – Bicultural Support.


Multicultural Support Services for Older Persons

Bharat – Co-ordinator, Multicultural Support Services (Inner West)

BharatBharat has a Masters Degree in Peace and Conflict Studies, Postgraduate Diploma in Development Studies, Graduate Certificate in Management Studies and a Certificate IV in Training and Assessment. He has over 15 years of professional experience Nepal and Australia working in program management, community development, organisational development, training, monitoring and evaluation. He has been with ECSC since 2007 and currently works as Project Coordinator of Inner West Multicultural Access Project. Apart from English, he is fluent in Nepali, Hindi and Newari.

Ellen – Co-ordinator, Multicultural Support Services (Eastern Sydney)

EllenEllen is firmly committed to Sydney’s multicultural community. Through both her personal life and professional work she strives to ensure the needs of culturally, socially and religiously diverse groups are met. Originally from Georgia, Ellen is fluent in several languages and has over 20 years of experience in community development. She holds a Bachelor of Arts with a major in Sociology and Teaching and has supplemented this qualification with several VET and professional development courses. Ellen has been employed by ECSC since February 2002.


Regional Assessment Services

Marika – Team Leader, Regional Assessment Services


Training & Professional Development

Penny – Training Co-ordinator

PennyPenny has been working for ECSC since February 2009 as a Project Officer for the CALD Children’s Services Project. In this role she worked closely with many Children’s Services, assisting them improve their provision of care for CALD children and families. Following the dismantling of this project in July 2010 due to funding cuts, Penny joined the Bicultural Support team as Project Officer. Penny is a trained Primary School Teacher K-6, with many years of experience in teaching English as a Second Language and Community Languages (Greek). She is a strong supporter of Bilingualism and the maintenance and promotion of home languages and cultures through Early Childhood Education.