Coffee with…Jenny Jackson, Executive Director, EDVOS

Describe the work of EDVOS.

At EDVOS our vision is for a community free from family violence, where everyone feels safe.

EDVOS is the specialist family violence service in Melbourne’s eastern metropolitan region (EMR) and covers around 1.03 million people in the municipalities of Boroondara, Manningham, Whitehorse, Knox, Monash, Maroondah and Yarra Ranges. We focus on supporting the safety of women and children and the accountability of perpetrators.

EDVOS empowers women to make informed choices through our broad range of programs and services which are individualised and sensitive. Our highly trained staff provide support, information, case management, safety planning, community education, programs for pet and animal safety and a strong network of referral pathways to other services that can assist.

What sort of work were you doing prior to starting at EDVOS?

Prior to commencing at EDVOS in January 2016, I was the Chief Executive Officer at Manningham Community Health Service for 4 years and prior to that I was CEO at a number of not for profit women’s organisations.

What excites and motivates you in your role?

I have a strong sense/value of social justice. Roles where I can make a real difference to individuals and the broader community are the most satisfying for me. EDVOS certainly fits that criteria.

What is most challenging about your work?

It is a really exciting time in Victoria post the Royal Commission into Family Violence. There is significant energy and resources being contributed to the service system.

It is particularly challenging and exciting for EDVOS as the lead specialist family violence service in Melbourne’s eastern metropolitan region where we are striving to be innovative and effective while balancing that with demand for service and workforce challenges.

What interested you in partnering with the Inner East PCP?

At EDVOS we truly believe that by working together we can achieve so much more. Inner East PCP has broad membership which is of interest and value to the women and children who use our service.

If you could change one thing about the world right now, what would it be?

Unquestionably it would be gender equity. Gender equity is a main driver of violence towards women and children. Advances in this area would see women and children living safer and more fulfilling lives.

If you weren’t working at EDVOS right now, what would you be doing?

One of my passions outside of work is the charity One Family At A Time. I am the founder and Chair of this registered charity which focuses on supporting communities in Cambodia to break the cycle of poverty, improve access to housing, healthcare, employment and education. If you’d like to know more about what we do have a look at our website http://www.onefamilyatatime.org.au/

I imagine I will always work in some capacity where my values are aligned with the goals and positive outcomes can be achieved, particularly for women, children, pets and animals. Maybe I might just stay at EDVOS!

We acknowledge the Wurundjeri people and other peoples of the Kulin nation as the traditional owners of the land on which our work in the community takes place. We pay our respects to their Elders past and present.

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