Welcome to Queensland Women’s Week at IMPACT! 

To celebrate the event, which runs over 11 days from March 3 to 14, we will be sharing a series of Q&A stories with some of our exceptional female staff from across the organisation.

Today you get to meet Maxine, one of our Intensive Family Support workers.

What is your role at IMPACT, why do you enjoy the work you do, and what drives you to be the best you can at your role?

My role at IMPACT Community Services is an Intensive Family Support (IFS) Case Manager within a Domestic and Family Violence Framework of Best Practice - DFV Specialist.  I enjoy the work that I do because a personal goal of mine is to “create a better world”; conscientisation is key.  In this role I am able to, hopefully, positively influence those I work with to achieve respectful, thriving and healthy relationships.

I am driven by all the people I meet and also by the children I come into contact with who might need their mother and father to respectfully co-exist with one another while putting in 100% effort to creating an uplifting, empowering and healthy home-front for them to springboard from.

Interesting but off-topic: In the DFV world and where 85%+ of violence and abuse comes from men towards their women and most often in front of their children, many questions arise. Like, can someone stop their oppression of someone (physically, psychologically, sexually, socially, financially)? And if so, how long will that take? What will happen if/when she decides she cannot ever trust him again and wants to leave? How are the children impacted by the shouting, screaming or the toxicity in their home grounds?

Who is the woman who has inspired you most in your life?

There are many women who have inspired my understandings and how I have worked over the years.  As a 9-year-old my learning about Joan of Arc really influenced me because I continue to be inspired by strong ‘warrior women’.  Currently I am following Vandana Shiva who began her works by installing a Seed Bank in response to the privatisation/patenting of natural resources; and I am following Indra Nooyi who has been voted the most influential women on Earth.

What are their exceptional qualities?

I think those women inspire me because of  their exceptional quality of Being – facta non verba – they walk their talk. The women who have been my role models are those who know the struggles of calling out oppression fearlessly (and relevantly) and most concisely.  You must be able to name the problem in order to resolve the problem to action for change.

What is your message to young women today who are trying to make their mark?

Do not be afraid to make mistakes, do not be freaked out by feeling uncomfortable in challenging situations – make your truths transparent. If you are wrong, it's okay. Learn by it, learn from it. Laugh a lot, and sing loudly. Read, Susan Jeffers' book, “Feel the Fear and Do it Anyway” or listen to the audio book. Mind the thoughts you keep, strive for respectful, interdependent healthy relationships, know what you stand for and what you won’t stand for. And just as importantly, learn how to defend/resource yourself in times of trouble.

Visit the Queensland Women's Week website