Suzanne Donnelly - National Coordinator, Parent Carer

Suzanne's passion and energy is contagious, so we're excited to share what makes her tick. Following in the footsteps of her mother, Suzanne is a special education teacher with a burning desire to make a positive difference to the lives of children on the autism spectrum and their families.

Why Positive Partnerships?

During the last phase of Positive Partnerships, I was the National Projects Officer and loved being part of such a knowledgeable and passionate team. Towards the end of the previous phase, I returned to my previous role as a coordinator at a school for children on the spectrum. The information I had gained whilst working for Positive Partnerships really helped me to better work collaboratively with families and staff, and when the opportunity arose to work full time with Positive Partnerships again, I jumped at the chance to rejoin the team.

What personal values and attributes do you bring to the role?

I have high expectations and love to help. I am passionate about people on the spectrum being able to access the same choices, education and quality of life as their peers. I am also very passionate about quality teaching and the sharing of knowledge with others. In terms of attributes, I would say my knowledge of autism - though my colleagues would say my organisation skills!

What do you hope to achieve in this role?

In my role as National Coordinator, Parent Carer Program I hope to be able to support the PP Team Leaders to facilitate high quality and national consistent parent/carer workshops across Australia. I'm also looking forward to being a part of some exciting new projects in this area, and to see how our learnings from parents/carers will be used to strengthen support for children on the spectrum and the families that support them.

What has inspired you in the past?

My Mum has been a special education teacher for more than 20 years and is very well respected in the disability field. She was my main inspiration for becoming a teacher. Recently, I've been blessed to be surrounded by so many amazing people who inspire me daily through their passion and determination to assist children on the spectrum and their families. I also want to thank the many parents who have shared their stories at workshops I've attended, as I'm continually inspired by these stories.