Emma Dresens - National Coordinator, Diverse Community Programs

Emma Dresens - Positive PartnershipsWhy Positive Partnerships?

After working in varied education and early childhood intervention fields, I was keen to turn my focus to the learning outcomes of school aged students on the autism spectrum. I began working as a delivery team member with Positive Partnerships and from my first workshop I knew it was the team for me! Many opportunities have led to me now taking on the role of team leader for Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Programs. 

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

Positive Partnerships is a good fit with my personal values as I’m passionate about following an evidence based approach to supporting schools and families. Colleagues would say I take the time to think things through and that I’m a bit of a reflective learner. This attribute really comes in handy in my role as we have so much to learn from families and school staff. Every workshop brings a new insight.

What do you hope to achieve in this role?

With a particular focus on diverse communities, I hope to build capacity within school communities to have strong relationships between home and school as this can lead to improved educational outcomes for students on the autism spectrum. Most importantly, I hope to contribute and make a difference to individual children, families, schools and communities.

What has been a highlight of your work with Positive Partnerships?

I have worked previously with a group of fathers and male carers in Ballarat. The group brought a different perspective and frankness which was very refreshing. They came open to being involved and were direct when talking about their children and what they wanted to know. The dads were keen to get down to the discussion of strategies so they could take away practical information to support their families and children on the autism spectrum. For this group of men, it highlighted the way in which they connect and feel informed may look different, which is consistent with what the evidence is telling us about working with fathers.