UWA McCusker Centre for Citizenship student Amelia Moran has contributed 100 hours towards Nedlands-based not-for-profit Kalparrin, who provide holistic support for families raising children with disability, additional needs, developmental delay and chronic medical and health conditions.
Amelia, who is studying a Bachelor of Philosophy, majoring in Human Anatomy and French, completed the project at Kalparrin through an internship with UWA’s McCusker Centre for Citizenship.
A strong focus of Kalparrin’s work is fostering connection - whether it be to other families, specialists or support services. Amelia’s internship project saw her conduct a systems mapping project, helping link and contrast Kalparrin’s services with organisations across Australia.
“A highlight of the experience was seeing the difference Kalparrin makes. I saw mothers breathe a sigh of relief after being connected with another mother in a similar situation – someone who really gets their struggles and what they’re going through,” said Amelia.
“Navigating complex systems such as NDIS, a lot of hospital and medical visits and therapies, and needing extra education care means that these parents can’t have a ‘normal’ life or much time to themselves. It was really rewarding to witness these parents get support with navigating the systems and connecting with others who have walked their road before,” she said.
“It really made me see how many disadvantaged families there are in our community and how complex some problems are that I never have to think about in my daily life,” she said.
Internship supervisor and Kalparrin CEO, Carrie Clark, said “Amelia was a delight to have around, not only was she very professional but she also brought a fresh perspective to the task which we found helpful.”
Amelia says the internship experience has given her experience working in a professional setting and she is now inspired to pursue work that addresses the gaps in services available to people in need.
“The McCusker Centre for Citizenship internship program puts you out of your comfort zone, teaches you new things, opens your eyes and is a rewarding experience. You gain real-world experience and get to do something completely different to your normal scope of work or study,” she said.
“You gain a lot, and you also gain satisfaction in knowing you’re making a real difference to those who need it,” said Amelia.