ANZSWWER 2017 Awards Announced


We were delighted to recognise the achievements of ANZSWWER members in 2017 at Auckland University, New Zealand and are grateful for the generosity of Allen & Unwin Publishers who made generous donations for our

awards. Congratulations to everyone who has won and also to those nominated, your achievements in the field are an inspiration to us all. Thank you..


The winners are:


Jane Maidment & Ronnie Egan  

Trans-Tasman Collaboration Award



In 2004 Allen and Unwin published the first edition of Practice Skills in Social Work and Welfare. This important publication, edited by Jane Maidment and Ronnie Egan is designed for teaching undergraduate and postgraduate students’ micro-skills for working in the field. Chapter contributions from both Australian and New Zealand authors have been included to ensure a trans-Tasman understanding of context and practice were embedded in each edition. Thirteen years on the third edition (2016) has continued this tradition ensuring students on both sides of the Tasman gain an understanding of service delivery and practice models used in both countries.





Mary Duncan
Field Placement Recognition Award

Mary Duncan, Manger Field Education Flinders University works tirelessly and passionately to ensure that all students receive timely quality field placement experiences in a broad range of practice settings. This has included non-traditional social work practice settings such as educational settings, community development and more recently a rapid growth in aged care. She has boldly gone where no one has gone before to initiate countless innovations to enhance student learning outcomes. Between 2016 and 2017 Mary has driven significant placement development that has resulted in relationships with 79 new placement agencies.




Bettina Cassano
Field-University Collaboration Award

It is with pleasure that the ACT and NSW Combined University Field Education Group (CUFEG) recommends Bettina Cassano for an award. Ms Cassano is an engaged and effective partner to CUFEG and has been for many years. She has assisted CUFEG in:

  • Navigating the reforms influencing our dynamic welfare environment,
  • Developing positive relationships and partnerships for all universities in NSW, Australia with a major government dept., and
  • Facilitating positive learning opportunities for students.

For example, Ms Cassano has coordinated and at times chaired meetings between CUFEG and FaCs managers and staff which have resulted in positive and innovative strategies and outcomes that have enhanced social work student field education for universities in New South Wales. She has facilitated excellent learning opportunities which have enhanced the welfare industry. Her contribution to social work and the welfare field is outstanding and admired by us in CUFEG.


Christine Craik

Community Service Award 

Christine has been the National VP for the AASW since 2011, in that time working on 7 Board working groups, completed 3 Government submissions & convenes the FV practice group.  She is Chair of Project Respect (a NFP working with trafficked women and women who work in the sex industry); a volunteer media advocate for Safe Steps (working with raising the profile of survivors of family violence) and a volunteer mentor for many young women in this field. Christine is an active volunteer in many local community groups, including the CFA, Wildlife Victoria, the Greens and her local Hall Committee.





Cate Thomas

Social Work Educator Award

Cate Thomas as the Course Director of the Social Work program at Charles Sturt University, led the School in a new direction during a time of much change within the university.  Through extensive consultation with the discipline team, Aboriginal staff and CSU’s Indigenous Board of Studies, Cate facilitated an audit of Australian Indigenous content across the curriculum. This led her to facilitate the development of both Indigenous Australian social work and eco-social work multi-disciplinary subjects. Australian Indigenous content is now included across highly relevant and innovative areas of study. Cate’s vision and courage ensures the effectiveness of our graduates to work with Indigenous Australians.




With a record number of abstracts this year, we congratulate the winners of Best Abstract in each theme. They are:


Bicultural rangahau/research, education and practice

Antonia Hendrick and Kirsty Oehlers

Building an alliance with local Aboriginal Elders as a method for decolonising the Curtin University Social Work curriculum


Working and educating across difference and diversity

Pat Dorsett, Naomi Sunderland, Glenn Woods and Stephen Larmar:
Transformative intercultural learning outside the classroom: Expanding students’ intercultural knowledge and practice through embodied and emplaced learning


Environmental social work and sustainability education and practice

Amanda Smith, Jenny Boddy, Hilary Gallagher, Sylvia Ramsay & Donna McAuliffe:
An exploration of bush adventure therapy techniques within an emerging environmental social work curriculum


Innovations in Practice

Aliitasi Sua-Tavila, Donald Bruce Yeates, Dora Kuir-Ayius, Dunstan Lawihin, Jioji Ravulo, Kesaia Vasutoga, Moses Faleolo, Patrick Vakaoti, Selina Ledoux, Tracie Mafile’o & Wheturangi Walsh-Tapiata:  
Pacific social work collaborations: Bridging gaps, challenging dominant discourses and our journey thus far

Mark Lynch:
Coming ready or not! : Hand Held Mobile Devices – Friend or Foe in Social Work Education


Working and educating in the context of neo-liberalism

Christine Craik: 
Getting the Social Work agenda into government policy

Susan Evans and Justine O’Sullivan:  
Collaborative learning in a hyper individualised HE environment: where to from here?


Pedagogies in Education and Practice

Susan Heward-Belle, Carolyn Rickett and Andrea Small:
From individual rumination to collective participation: pedagogical strategies for moving beyond trigger warnings


Research for Change

Sue Gair, Ines Zuchowski & Lyn Munns:
Grandparents Matter: Optimising the inclusion of grandparents in child protection processes