The core team at Western Chances are dedicated, hardworking and passionate about improving the lives of young people in Melbourne’s west.
Chief Executive Officer
My role at Western Chances involves leading the organisation and working with the Board to develop and implement Western Chances’ vision and mission. I work hard to grow and enhance the Western Chances’ brand, image and reputation, maintain effective governance and management systems, expand and maintain robust relationships with a wide variety of stakeholders and optimise income streams and organisational efficiency and effectiveness.
I am proud to have introduced to the organisation our popular and inspiring scholarship award ceremony and the Good Business Forum fundraising lunch, lead the growth of Western Chances from a $500,000 turnover to over $1.35m and help deliver life changing opportunities to support over 600 young people annually. I commenced with Western Chances in March 2009.
I am passionate about, and committed to, ensuring that young people facing financial, social and cultural barriers are given opportunities to fulfil their potential. After all, talent is found everywhere but opportunity is not.
I have many Big Dreams but two important dreams are to live in a gender equal world and to develop an initiative that will positively transform the not-for-profit sector.
Phone: 03 8345 7817
I am responsible for managing the development, documentation, and delivery of the Scholarships and Links Program at Western Chances. I am also involved in the development of the Western Chances Alumni Community.
I have a Business Degree and Diploma of Education, Secondary. I spent most of my working life in the client services area of advertising agencies. This was a career I enjoyed for many years but after becoming increasingly involved in volunteering I decided that I wanted to move into the not for profit sector. In June 2012, I was employed as Program Manager at Western Chances, a job I believe is the best in the world!
I have a really big dream: that the world will be a place with equal opportunity for all. I am ‘pretty happy to be working at Western Chances where I feel I am contributing in some small way to that dream being realised. Think global, act local!’
Phone: 03 8345 7813
Felicity Dakin (Fizz)
With a background in hospitality operations and data base implementation, I am using my knowledge of systems and processes to keep the office running smoothly. In my role at Western Chances I manage all ICT systems and am working on improving our data base.
My list of tasks include overseeing our team of volunteers, helping manage events, working on marketing and communications, ensuring compliance with government regulations and refining policies, guidelines and procedures. I also assist the programs team with reporting and statistical analysis.
I am an avid fan of young people and have been volunteering since primary school. I was recognised with a Paul Newman award in 2008 for my community work. Having been acquainted with Western Chances through my volunteer work; joining the team at Western Chances in 2016 was a logical step into the not-for-profit space.
My big dream for the future is to continue loving my job, and help to ensure that all young people can access opportunities. I look forward to spending time with friends and family and exploring the big wide world.
Phone: 03 8345 7811
Finance and Administration Coordinator
I am the longest serving team member at Western Chances, having joined the team in February 2006, not long after the organisation was established. I have seen a lot of positive changes and huge growth over the years.
Prior to joining Western Chances, I worked in a large medical practice managing the day to day running of the surgery including the daily reconciliation and the preparation of medicolegal reports.
At Western Chances my role sees me managing the key processes related to accounts receivable and accounts payable. I am responsible for reconciling bank accounts, paying scholarships, the scholarship acquittal process, entering donations and donor nurturing.
Over the years I developed a deep passion for charitable work having experienced similar challenges in my teens as our young people. I can relate to our recipients and there is no better reward than knowing I have made a difference in their life! My big dream for the future is education to be free and all young people have the same opportunity no matter where they live or which school they attend.
Phone: 03 8345 7812
My role is to assist the Program Manager to deliver the Western Chances Scholarship Program, the Links Program and to support the development of the Western Chances Alumni Community.
I have a Diploma of Teaching Early Childhood and enjoyed 11 years employed as the director of a pre-school in Tyabb, working to deliver stimulating and enjoyable educational programs to three and four year old children. I also have over 15 years’ experience working in my family start-up wine company.
I have had a long term interest in, and passion for, Western Chances having joined several years ago as a volunteer scholarship application assessor. I found the volunteering rewarding and inspiring and I feel very happy to now be employed as part of a fantastic team that is bringing out the best in the west!
I have a really big dream: that everyone can access quality education and training regardless of their financial situation.
Phone: 03 8345 7819