Jannene Thorn knows a thing or two about lending a helping hand to those in need of support.
Jannene is IMPACT Community Services' Manager of Mental Health Services and has worked at IMPACT for 10 years across at least four different programs.
Jannene loves the work she does and the reputation IMPACT has in the community.
“I work here because the mission, vision and values align with mine,” Jannene said.
“And I work here because I enjoy empowering vulnerable people so that they become independent and no longer need support.”
Jannene said that IMPACT was great because of its diversity, scope and wrap-around services.
“Someone will come as a jobseeker and wind up in parental support, or one of our other programs which is right next door,” she said.
“People are being referred across programs all the time – it's a one-stop shop here.”
Jannene was a chef before entering the community services field, but after 19 years she felt “burned out” and needed a change of career.
She has a brother with disability so had plenty of experience in caring; it seemed natural to work in that sector. Jannene started working eight hours a week at IMPACT as a casual disability support worker, but soon became full time.
“My lived experience with my brother made me stronger as a support worker,” she said.
“You already know what standards of care are needed to look after someone properly.”
Jannene spent three years as disability support worker before moving to early intervention in parenting as a Team Leader.
She then worked in supported employment at our Materials Recovery Facility (MRF), looking after our workers with a disability.
“I really loved it and almost didn't want to leave,” she said.
But then Jannene found her calling as Manager of Mental Health Services, looking after a vast area of the Wide Bay. She now manages nine programs and organises the collaboration with other various support services.
“We collaborate well with the community,” Jannene said.
“We partner with other services, all with the end view of a better outcome for the client.”
Jannene manages a staff of 10, all mental health experts with vast experience.
“We use a strengths-based recovery approach,” she said.
“It’s whatever works well with the client.”
Jannene's plans for the future involve co-designing mental health programs and trying to establish a wider footprint across Queensland.
And of course, helping more people to improve their lives.