About Our TeamThe brains behind Youthworx
Executive ProducerCall Jon StaleyEmail Jon Staley
Jon Staley is a Producer, Writer, Director and Social Entrepreneur and has been involved in establishing Youthworx from scratch – taking the seed idea of using creative media to engage highly marginalised young people and building a sustainable social enterprise model. Over the past 6 years Jon has successfully overseen the development and production of over 200 commissioned short films while training and mentoring young people as film producers. Most recently Jon co-wrote and directed the short film Brown Paper Bag based on a story by acclaimed indigenous author and storyteller Boori Monty Pryor.
Jon came to Youthworx with a background in education, theatre and film and has a longstanding passion and commitment to working with marginalized youth on creative arts and media based projects. From 1998 to 2002 Jon taught Drama, English and Media and was Performing Arts Coordinator at Northland Secondary College in Preston. Between 2002 and 2007 Jon taught in Youth programs with NMIT TAFE while also working on a range of film, theatre and education projects alongside indigenous film maker Richard Frankland. In 2000 Jon was awarded the inaugural Peter Clarke Teaching for Reconciliation Award based on his work with the community at Northland.
Jon is passionate about stories and loves the opportunity of supporting communities to tell their story.
Production Assistant (Trainee)
Amelia is a 17-year-old aspiring filmmaker who has been involved with Youthworx for over 2 years, starting in Youthworx Media where she completed her Cert III, and has been involved in YWP projects including ‘Live Up’, ‘Recipes for Community’ and a handful of other projects. She is currently studying a Certificate IV in Screen and Media through her traineeship with us.
In her spare time she volunteers and runs events with Amped Up Productions. She is actively involved in community projects including ‘SUNplugged’, ‘Better Blocks Brunswick’ and Play Me, I’m Your’s. Her weekends are spent making cakes and cupcakes for friends and family, and she is currently in the midst of building her own catering company.
Business Support Manager
Responsible for business support services i.e. finance, HR and accreditation.
Prior to Youthworx, Damira worked at Doutta Galla Community Health Service for 13 years and Headway Victoria for 3 years.
She has been with Youthworx since October 2010 in a part time capacity as well as being Finance Manager at JOY 94.9.
With more than 25 years of experience working in financial management, business management, and office administration she started her career working for a merchant bank but moved to the community sector and has never looked back.
Damira enjoys working for community organisations dedicated to improving the health & wellbeing of the community, helping people in time of need and advocating for social justice.
Damira feels great pride in the opportunities we can provide young people.
Youth Support Services Manager
Nicola says what she loves about working at Youthworx is that we are ever evolving and always striving for best practice by staying close to our values. Nicola hails from Scotland and holds a degree in Politics and Sociology and a postgraduate qualification in Community Education (otherwise known as Youth Work and Community Development). More recent qualifications include a Diploma in Counselling and a Certificate IV in Teaching and Assessment.
Nicola’s role with us is to help develop our service, oversee student intake and the support services offered to young people, as well as to carry out some direct casework including outreach. Nicola has experience in case management, coordinating and managing befriending and mentoring projects, supporting families, facilitating groups on family learning with parents and working with young people in schools. Other work history includes working in Drug and Alcohol Detox Units and crisis homelessness services.
Nicola has worked as a Youth and Adult literacy tutor and has spent time in Mexico teaching English as a foreign language. Prior to entering the Community Services sector Nicola worked in print journalism for local newspapers in Scotland. Nicola has been with Youthworx for three years now and has developed the casework framework, policies and procedures that are now in place in the service.
In addition to working with Youthworx Nicola also works as a Tutor for Youth Work and Community Services students for a private RTO.
Kelly works with both Youthworx Productions and Youthworx Media as a Media Trainer, Mentor, Director, Camera Operator and Editor. She has been involved in a large variety of Projects including – The HopeVale/Pelican Project – Returning to Guugu Yimithirr Sea Country, The AIDS 2014 Street Art legacy Project, Possum Skin Cloak, Refuge and Recipe For Community.
Many of her short independent films have been screened at festivals across Australia and Internationally including Frameline San Francisco, Image Nation Montreal International LGBT Film Festival and Melbourne Queer Film Festival. After taking 2nd place at Brisbane Fast Film Competition and being featured on SBS Kelly went on to direct a 1/2 hour documentary “When Kelly Met Tasciano” for the SBS TV series ’24 Hours’.
As well as working on several Reality Television programs including ‘Big Brother’ and ‘I’m a Celebrity Get Me out of here’ (UK & US) she created the ‘making of’ Documentary for Australian Feature Film ‘Night’. While studying at The Victorian College of The Arts, Kelly received two script writing awards and promoted her 3rd year film through international film festivals. Kelly’s passion for social change led her to Cambodia where she collaborated with young Khmer people to create music videos through the “Korsang” harm reduction centre.
She has also worked in the Disability sector where she is created music videos with clients of Interact Arts Australia and is the project Manager for Channel 31’s ‘Working Title’, a Multi Cultural Youth and Media Mentoring Project. More recently she filmed and co-directed a short collaborative film ‘Kadjina – In the Shelter of the Karlijirta’ at a remote Aboriginal community school in W.A currently on the festival circuit, and is in Pre-Production on an independent feature film Nancy Pansy Hairy Mary with Fully Flared Films.