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We caught up with our first year Chisholm Placement student, Jacqui McOrmond to find out more about her interests and expertise, and what makes her heart sing! 

At 50 years young, now is the time for Jacqui to let her heart drive her decisions, with three children in their early 20s “I no longer need to be governed by school pick up times, working close to home or how much I need to earn. I’ve never stopped learning, studying this time round is really freeing, studying community services is definitely out of my comfort zone and quite different from what I have worked in or studied previously.”  

What attracted you to study community services?

Support women to build the courage to make positive change for themselves. And on a bigger scale helping the community to make bigger changes, empowering individuals and working with government and other agencies to fill the gap in what might be lacking (services, programs and infrastructure). 

Wherever I’ve lived, I have always been active in my community, from volunteering and working at my local community garden in Healesville or local soup kitchen. Community has always been a constant in my life, something that has supported me as I have transitioned through my own life, through a divorce, change in jobs or move to a new place. Whenever I move to a new place I find my local neighbourhood centre and join a local class, it’s always been a great way to meet other locals.

Study diversity so far… 

I used to be heavily involved in a faith network, which at the time was quite isolating; then leaving that faith network I found myself and daughters isolated from family, friends and connections. Studying diversity at Chisholm really opened my eyes to the diversity that exists within society. I have always come from a place of no judgment, however in my mind connected diversity to cultural diversity, there are so many more expressions of diversity.  Studying diversity has helped me to understand my connection and place in the world and that diversity is faith, sexuality ability and I feel like I belong more as a result.

Why Conversation Co?

Alongside diversity I am enjoying the community development unit and how individuals through an idea can make a positive change in their own communities, I love that idea and want to give voice to community needs and help to empower them further. 

Conversation Co

Conversation Co proudly acknowledges and celebrates First Peoples of Australia and their ongoing strength in upholding some of the world's oldest living cultures. We acknowledge the Traditional Owners of the lands throughout what is now Victoria – where we live, conduct pop-ups, and engage with our communities – and pay our respects to their Elders, past and present. Conversation Co acknowledges First Peoples' sovereignty has never been ceded. The strength, resilience and pride of First Peoples, their cultures, communities and identities continue to grow and thrive today despite the impact of colonisation and ongoing experiences of racism.

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