Volunteer story by Neeraja

October 4, 2023

Please share a brief overview of yourself:

I moved to Australia to pursue a Master of Science in Epidemiology, which I completed at the end of 2020. I then started to work in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic for the state of Victoria with one of the local public health units called NEPHU and worked there for 2 years. Currently, I’m working on an NDIS project for data collection from NDIS participants and their family members/carers.

My career so far has enhanced my communication and engagement skills which has always been something I was interested in. I have always wanted to work for communities and assist with promoting health and well-being. My experiences so far have enabled me to do so and I look forward to many other opportunities to serve communities in the future.

What inspired you to become a LiverWELL volunteer?

Working with hepatitis cases during my time at NEPHU has given me some insight into liver health and liver conditions. My main aim was to gain some experience in community engagement and health promotion, which inspired me to look for volunteering opportunities with LiverWELL.

Do you have a particular interest in liver health?

My maternal grandfather was a diabetic and experienced liver failure. Having someone in the family suffer from liver issues, and knowing that having liver issues is life-threatening caused me to worry. Therefore, I wanted to grow my knowledge and raise awareness of liver health and liver diseases.

Do you have a particular interest in liver health?

One of my favourite LiverWELL experiences has been working in collaboration with the health promotions team at the Springvale SnowFest. We raised awareness and distributed resources regarding liver health and liver conditions. And of course, donning the great O’liver!

What tips do you have for new volunteers?

I’d probably just say to take up any opportunities and to learn new systems or engage in various events or programs as much as possible. All these learning opportunities that present themselves must be wisely used to your advantage to learn and upskill.

What’s next for you?

I am looking forward to progressing in my career as a public health professional and to better use my skillset to promote general health and wellbeing in the community.

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We welcome people from all cultures, nationalities and religions. Being inclusive and providing equitable services is our commitment.

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We acknowledge the traditional owners of the lands where we work - the lands of the Woi-Wurrung Wurundjeri people of the Kulin Nations. We express our gratitude to them for their continued care and curation of these lands and waters. We pay our respects to Elders past and present.

LiverWELL observes and honours the Kulin Nation's intrinsic connection to land, sky and water, and the creator Bunjil. LiverWELL is committed to being led and informed by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders on bridging health outcomes for communities and improving liver health.