Developmental Educator

Felicity has worked in a range of positions in the disability sector including service development, project management and service management roles. Felicity is passionate about supporting people with intellectual disability to have a voice within their community. She has assisted with the development of self-advocacy programs and supported individuals with intellectual disability in their self-advocacy roles. She has also been part of an inclusive research team working with co-researchers with intellectual disability to have a voice through research.

As Executive Director of the South Australian Council on Intellectual Disability (SACID), Felicity has led multiple initiatives that promote inclusive practice for people with intellectual disability. She has a won a Development Educators Australia Incorporated Employer Award in 2021 for her work with SACID, and she serves on the board of Inclusion Australia, a national advocacy body on a mission to increase the voice of people with an intellectual disability and their families. Felicity received a 2022 Distinguished Alumni Award for her distinguished leadership and advocacy in driving an inclusive practice for people with an intellectual disability in South Australia.



Developmental Educator

Laynie has extensive experience as a program coordinator and project manager within the Disability and Education sectors. Over the last 13 years she has been actively involved in various state-wide and national inclusive collaborations to drive change so that people with disability have equitable opportunity to access, participate and achieve their goals within education and employment. Laynie’s personal experience as a supporter of family and friends with disability led her to undertake studies in Law and Behavioural Science before completing her Honours in Disability and Developmental Education. She is passionate about social justice, self-advocacy and human rights, all of which underpins her drive to create more inclusive communities. In addition to volunteering in a number of roles within her community, Laynie is admin of her local Buy Nothing Group, a gift economy initiative which aims to build communities and collaboratively share the abundance around us. Laynie is a lover of astronomy, music, camping and gardening, and also provides academic support at Flinders University within the Disability and Community Inclusion Unit.



Developmental Educator

Jillian is a Developmental Educator with diverse program coordination, organisational capacity building and teaching experience within the disability sector. Jillian is passionate about access to the arts, leisure and recreation for its natural ability to develop relationships, build confidence and instil a sense of identity in a way that cannot easily be sought in other areas. Jillian is involved in her community through her involvement in gymnastics as a performer with the Harlequin Spirals German Wheel team. Prior to joining SACID Jillian worked for a number of years as a Disability Advisor at an international NGO in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, while concurrently teaching online for Flinders University. Guided strongly by human rights, Jillian is passionate about her role at SACID and the ability to support people with intellectual disability to advocate for themselves.



Kim has worked in a range of inclusion, project management and strategic roles across the private, public, and non-profit sector. She has previously worked with organisations focused on improving employment opportunities for people with disability, migrant communities, and wom*n. She is passionate about equitable access to employment and workplace inclusion and has developed award-winning inclusive leadership and flexible working programs. With extensive corporate experience and a Master of Business Administration, Kim can translate commercial approaches into social settings to make a difference for organisations and their participants.



Gavin grew up on the Yorke Peninsula, the experience of which has led him to become a passionate advocate for people with disability living in rural and remote areas. He brings to SACID many years’ experience in the community sector having worked in both aged care and disability. Gavin has supported his local community working as a Program Assistant at the Camden Community Centre for over 20 years. Gavin is involved in self-advocacy as a member of Our Voice SA. He is a Guest Speaker for the NDIS Independent Advisory Council and a member of the Intellectual Disability Reference Group, a sub-committee of the NDIS IAC. Gavin was formerly a member of the NDIS Participant Reference Group contributing feedback on NDIS processes and resources. 

Gavin studied at Flinders University in 2023 as part of the Up the Hill Project. Never too far from his country roots, he enjoys opportunities to explore nature and the outdoors with friends.



Mel is a Developmental Educator which has led her to experience a diverse range of roles within the disability sector from support worker, mentor, NDIS Support Coordination, allied health therapist and Positive Behaviour Support Practitioner. Mel is passionate about supporting people to make a positive difference in their lives through using a person centred, active support approach.  Mel is excited to be part of the SACID team, to work alongside people with intellectual disability and to promote an accessible and inclusive community. Mel enjoys exploring new foods and eateries in her spare time and also continues her work as a support worker and mentor. 



Aerina works at SACID as a Project Officer co-designing and delivering building workshops for people with intellectual disability and families across South Australia. She has completed a Bachelor of Social Work degree from the University of South Australia. Previously, Aerina has worked as a support worker for NDIS participants to achieve their goals. Aerina is driven by social justice values and is passionate about fighting for an inclusive and equitable community. In her spare time, she enjoys 90s music, scrolling listings on Facebook Marketplace for vintage furniture and watching history documentaries.



Alirio is a multiskilled professional with ample experience working across many different roles in the disability sector. He has a lived experience of disability through his brother Ali who was blind and had an intellectual disability and has a passion for human rights, advocacy and trying to offer solutions to social problems.

Alirio is an award-winning actor, director, and theatre-maker. He has over 25 years of experience working with communities and has deliver workshops created works in Jails, Detention Centers, National & International Universities, Schools, with Youth at Risk, with Multicultural and Linguistically Diverse Communities and with many organizations across Australia and Overseas.

In 2016 Alirio received The Citizen of The Year Award from The City of Port Adelaide Enfield and was nominated for Australian of the year. Currently Alirio is the Artistic Director of ‘AJZ Productions’, ‘True North Youth Theatre Ensemble’ and ‘True Ability’ which Alirio Co-Leads with Creative Producer Kelly Vincent.



Cathi is an experienced parliamentary advisor who has supported a number of members of parliament in a range of roles including research, administration and media liaison. As a mature aged student, she gained her Bachelor of Arts/Bachelor of Education (Early Childhood) and went on to complete an Honours degree in Early Childhood with a research project on diversity in children’s literature. She has always had a strong sense of social justice and an interest in human rights for all, working and volunteering on a variety of community action campaigns on a wide range of issues including public transport, tobacco law and improved disability access. Working with members of the public to access their rights and get better access to services has given her a strong overview of the services available in SA. She loves gardening, walking in the bush spotting wildlife or walking in the suburbs and finding great gardens and architecture.



Maddison is a graduate of a double degree in Social Science (Human Services) and Psychological Science. Maddison has previously worked for SACID in a casual Project Assistant role and since completing her degree has worked in administration for an NDIS registered Allied Health organisation and as a School Support Officer, supporting children with disabilities to be successful in the education setting. Maddison is passionate about inclusivity, finding ways to reduce and remove barriers to participation, and values the voice of all people. Maddison utilises a person-centred, humanistic approach in her work and life. Outside of work, Maddison enjoys spending time with family, reading, nibbling at cheese platters and drinking a cup of hot tea or coffee.



Deanna is a Developmental Educator and she has had a lot of experience in therapy roles and has also worked as a Positive Behaviour Support Practitioner. Deanna is passionate about supporting individuals to work towards achieving their goals and building their independence. Over the past 18 years, Deanna has worked in many school and post school environments, supporting families and people with intellectual disability to find meaningful employment or become engaged in other activities within the community. Deanna enjoys walking her dog, watching and playing soccer, and volunteering at her children’s extracurricular activities.



Teressa has worked in the disability sector for 30 years. Originally a trained teacher, her passion has always been working alongside people with intellectual disability and their families. She has held support worker and program facilitator roles at Minda, Orana and Down Syndrome SA and has worked as an education consultant in various school settings. Teressa has qualifications in special education and disability studies. 

Teressa loves that her work makes a difference in the community. She was born in Adelaide and loves living here. In her spare time, she likes to read, be with her cats and be an early bird at garage sales!!!



Sarah uses her voice as a person with intellectual disability to support SACID to develop information and resources that people with intellectual disability and their families really want. Sarah has held advocacy roles such as being an Ambassador for Down Syndrome South Australia where she was able to share her experiences and achievements with wide audiences both in Australia and overseas. As an Inclusion Advisor, Sarah enjoys helping people to be more informed by sharing her ideas for new workshops and assisting to develop and run these sessions. Sarah is involved in her community through participation in dancing, cheerleading and long-term open employment and uses her networks to promote the work of SACID with passion. Sarah believes that it is important for people with intellectual disability to be included and valued in the community so that you can teach the community how to be inclusive and understand people with intellectual disability – you do this by showing people what you are able to achieve! As the current Our Voice National representative for South Australia, Sarah also speaks up about issues important to people with intellectual disability in our state.



SACID Inclusion Advisor Ruby Nankivell is a Peer Action Leader. Ruby was also involved in the My Life My Choices supported decision-making project. Ruby says working with SACID is a great experience: “I work with wonderful and creative people, with and without a disability to make life better for all South Australians.” Through her work at SACID, Ruby wants to end all forms of discrimination against people with disabilities. She wants all people with a disability to know their rights and to be respected and valued community members, “I’d like to see the first Prime Minster of Australia with a disability”.

Ruby keeps busy with a range of activities such as making YouTube videos, going for walks, catching up with friends, shopping, eating out (especially if it includes gelato), watching movies and helping her Grandpa in his business. Ruby runs her own public speaking business called: “Ruby Nankivell – find the value in every moment.” She also works as a community researcher at Flinders University. Ruby has graduated from the Up the Hill project at Flinders University and is a Board Member of Enabled Youth Disability Network.



Tim works with SACID in the role of co-design researcher on the My Life, My Choices Supported Decision Making project. He also supports the Workshops team and co-facilitates a number of the SACID workshops. Tim comes to SACID with a background in studying a Cert. 3 in Business and a Cert. 3 in Government. Tim has extensive volunteering experience at both the Noarlunga Hospital and the Glenelg Footy Club and past employment at Flinders University and a number of local Government departments. Working with SACID is very important to Tim. He enjoys the challenge of work, the chance to meet new people, socialise and be engaged in the community. Tim can be found enjoying many sports and is a passionate tennis and football player. Tim also enjoys time online, playing Playstation and video games in his spare time.  



Amanda works with SACID as an Inclusion Advisor. She has worked as co-design researcher on the My Life, My Choices Supported Decision Making project. She is also a trained workshops facilitator for SACID’s capacity building workshops. Amanda is an experienced public speaker and an amazing advocate for people with intellectual disability. Outside of work you will find Amanda’s spare time filled with doing arts and crafts, cooking for her family, hanging with her friends, and caring for her much loved pets.



Thomas is an Inclusion Advisor at SACID. Thomas was born in China and came to Australia at a young age. Thomas has had many volunteer roles at Op shops as a Retail Assistant and has helped out at a school cafe. He has also volunteered as a Leisure and health Assistant at aged care facilities, helping residents with social activities and interactions such as bingo, and providing extra help and support to make their life happy.  Thomas currently also works as a Food and Hospitality Assistant at an Aged Care facility.

Thomas worked on the Towards Inclusive Practice – Including Everyone project. He is excited to work at SACID as he is keen to help people with intellectual disability to become more confident in themselves, speak up and be sociable in their friendship groups. Thomas wants to help people get out of their shells by overcoming their barriers in life. Thomas is looking forward to meeting the people SACID work with interstate, in his role with the Towards Inclusive Practice Project.



Libby has extensive experience as a self-advocate. She has been involved with Our Voice SA as a Peer Mentor since 2018 and has worked with Purple Orange to run workshops for people with disability. Libby is passionate about sharing her experiences in her life with others and has spoken at many different conferences and groups. Libby has worked on the Towards Inclusive Practice project with SACID and is currently working on the Redress Scheme. She hopes to gain more skills and also provide mentorship to others to speak up about their rights. Libby’s passion is helping people with disability to find their voice and to stand up for themselves; and to support others to take control of their lives. Libby also likes to socialise with others to see what they have been up to.

In Libby’s spare time, she enjoys doing diamond art and knitting.



Joanna joins the SACID team as an Inclusion Advisor for the Towards Inclusive Practice – Including Everyone, project. She is excited for the opportunity to look at things in a different perspective. Joanna would also like to share her experiences living with an intellectual disability, with others.


Joanna has a background in Hospitality and has previously worked at cafes and Aged Care Facilities. Joanna had a big family which includes three brothers, who she enjoys spending time with. In Joanna’s spare time, she enjoys cooking, keeping active with sports such as tennis and netball, film and new media with Tutti and quad biking.

Photo of Melinda



Melinda is a self-advocate. Melinda likes to speak up about the rights of people with disability and does so through the many groups she is involved in. At SACID, she is an Inclusion Advisor, a Peer Action Crew Leader, and a SACID Reference Group member. Melinda is part of Keolis Downer reference group which is about Adelaide trains, and she is a member of the NDIS Quality and Safeguards Commission Research Steering Group. Melinda is also a peer mentor for Our Voice SA Peer Network where she runs peer groups.

In her spare time, Melinda likes walking on the beach and having a yummy ice cream. She likes gardening in her backyard and going away on trips (long and short). She also enjoys fishing out in a boat at sea.



Zac is excited to join the SACID team as an Inclusion Advisor. Zac is currently finishing Year 12 and enjoys the subjects Math and Science. Zac is new to the workplace but is looking forward to working in a team and meeting new people. In his spare time, he enjoys watching action movies, his favourite movie is The Terminator. He also enjoys games like Chess and Uno. Zac carries a pack of Uno cards in his backpack and is always ready to play!



Elizabeth has an accounting degree and is a Certified Practising Accountant with extensive experience in the not-for-profit sector, having held finance roles at Minda Incorporated and Craniofacial Australia.  In these roles, Elizabeth was able to use her accounting skills to help provide useful financial information to people making financial decisions and gained an insight into the importance of maintaining a strong financial voice for people with disabilities to be able to access and participate equally in the community.  SACID’s purpose of inclusion, building confidence and equal access to information in order to both educate and participate equally are aligned to her own and she looks forward to being a part of the team. Elizabeth has a passion for travel, keeping active and music. She is currently studying music theory and singing and is keen to reconnect with family and friends when travel is possible.



Lola joins the SACID team as an Executive Assistant with a past in the Fashion and the Customer Service Industry. Lola is excited to expand her professional skills, meet new people and undergo new experiences whilst working at SACID. Lola has previously studied Contemporary Art with a focus on painting and design and loves all things creative. In her spare time Lola enjoys beach walks, socialising, reading, and spending time with her pets Aslan and Juniper. Lola enjoys helping others and friendly conversation, so make sure to say hello if you see her around the office!



Tom is a disability and developmental education student from Flinders University. Something that is really important to him is the belief that everyone is equal, and he has loved seeing this in action at SACID.

When not studying, Tom enjoys going on adventures with his children, cooking, gardening and soccer. He also works as a NDIS Support Coordinator and hopes to include what he is learning at SACID in this role.

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