Our people

Our team is multi-disciplinary with a range of skills and training, lived experience and passion for young people and social justice. It also reflects our commitment to affirmative employment. We believe we have a responsibility to build the communities we work within by creating real and meaningful pathways into employment. We also know that by ensuring our workforce is reflective of the communities we work with, their unique and vital knowledge is remains central through a process of co-design. In other words, it ensures our programs are by and for young people and diverse communities.

The youth services team use their individual and collective passion and commitment for young people, alongside theoretical and experiential knowledge/training to harness the aspirations, potential and skills of local young people. Our focused and intentional work to engage ‘at risk’ and disengaged young people builds and maintains pathways to support and opportunities.

Our skills and expertise activates our strong youth development framework, including within drummond street’s evidence-based, family-centered community and family practice model.

Abdinaser Mussa-Behe, Youth Peer Leader (he/him pronouns)

Abdi supports engagement activities that connect and affirm the identities of (cis) young men. Abdi applies his youth work training in the community he grew up in. An emergent practitioner Abdi brings grass roots community connections and solutions to our assertive engagement of young (cis) men of African and Islamic background growing up on the Carlton public housing estate.

Work days: Monday, Wednesday and Friday

Contact: Abdinasir.MussaBehe@ds.org.au 

Anyaak Abiel, Youth & Family Practitioner (he/him pronouns)

An experienced community organiser and program planner, Anyaak has had paid and volunteer roles in the community. Anyaak’s practical experiences are complimented by studies in criminology and psychology. This sits alongside an innate passion for social equality and engaging young people in innovative programs. Anyaak is an active leader in the community in volunteer and paid capacities. Delivering important cultural insights and cross-cultural wisdom to his peers within our and other organisations, Anyaak is a valuable contributor to the youth sector.

Anyaak is involved in our All Guy’z program at 480 Lygon Street and Friday Night Jam. He also provides individual support to young people.

Work days: Monday, Wednesday and Friday’s

Contact: 0488 787 202 or anyaak.abiel@ds.org.au


Bexx Djentuh-Davis, Senior Youth Development Practitioner (she/her pronouns)

Bexx is a Ghanian/Maori (Tainui, Ngati Maniapoto) woman from Aotearoa. Over 6 plus years, Bexx has curated and supported events around her community. Co-founding ALTERITY collective and a director for LISTEN org. Bexx has prioritised QTPOC communities through engaging with topics of inclusion, accessibility and art practices. Through events such as ‘Strength in Visions’ with Fringe festival and mentorship with the creation of ‘Mana’ for Darebin-feast, Bexx now supports young people to connect with their people and wider community resources.

Work days: Wednesday and Fridays

Email: Bexx.DjentuhDavis@ds.org.au

Bobuq Sayed, Youth Development Practitioner (they/them pronouns)

Bobuq Sayed is an advocate for queer, gender diverse and young people of colour. Coming from a literary and social sciences background, their work involves building community for young QTPOC and religiously identified young people through workshops, panels, excursions and other events, with the aim of amplifying historically silenced voices. They are the founder of Colour Tongues, a collective designed to support people living at the intersections of marginality in occupied Australia.

Work days: Tuesday to Friday

Email: bobuq.sayed@ds.org.au

Chantelle Higgs, General Manager of Youth and Community (she/her pronouns)

Chantelle brings a true bottom-up approach to leadership by drawing from the learning’s of 15+ years of working alongside young people experiencing marginalization due to structural barriers.  She utilises her experience co-developing, delivering, and coordinating innovative social change activities and campaigns to lead the work of the youth and communities team. Chantelle follows an innate curiosity for the creative and sophisticated ways young people negotiate social differences.

As the General Manager, Chantelle is responsible for ensuring that the work done by the drum and the wider community team assertively engages our most vulnerable members and that once they are engaged our services are affirmative. She also seeks out and builds partnerships which create more opportunities for young people and families.

Work days: Monday to Friday

Contact: 9020 4663 or 0488 559 007 or chantelle.higgs@ds.org.au 

Idil Ali, Youth Development Practitioner (she/her pronouns)

A passionate advocate for the local African and Muslim community, Idil seeks to ensure others have the opportunities she had growing up in Carlton. An undergraduate student bringing ‘lived experience’ to our team, Idil crystallised her passion and commitment to ensuring; young people have access to leadership and participation opportunities; that organisations deliver these; and they provide inclusive and affirmative pathways. Committed to leading the development of solidarity across communities marginalised by imposed social categories, Idil is making a sustained difference to our community.

Idil heads up our VoiceFest youth committee-collective, is proactively engaging all local young women to facilitate their participation in the arts and delivers the homework club on a Monday.

Work days: Monday, Tuesday and Thursday and Friday

Contact: 0419 286 063 Idil.Ali@ds.org.au

Jamira Hunter, Youth Peer Leader (she/her pronouns)

In the Youth Peer Leader role Jamera leverages her own leanings from leadership opportunities for First Nations people to proactively curate activities creating dialogue. Since joining our team she has been involved in planning events and activities that bring together First Nations people and young people on the Carlton Public Housing Estate. Excitingly, her first idea has just secured a Youth Week Grant 2018 for a mural on this Estate.

Work days: Wednesday and Friday

Contact: Jamera.Hunter@ds.org.au

Machehi Komba, Senior Youth Development Practitioner (she/her pronouns)

Machehi seeks to draw on her multidisciplinary skills, including creative industries, governance, community services and lived experience to be a change maker in the community and health promotion sectors. Using narratives as her foundation, Machehi seeks to positively influence individuals, social and community wellbeing. Machehis’ sector experience includes using creativity modalities like music to educate, advocate and celebrate the resilience of people whilst also centering their involvement in the processes associated with this.

Work days: Monday to Thursday

Contact: Machehi.Koomba@ds.org.au

Mubarek Imam, Youth Peer Leader (he/him pronouns)

Mubarek arrived to Australia less than five years ago. Since then, he has crafted leadership opportunities at the local and state level. Mubarek seeks to translate his experience of community organising young refugees in Egypt to connect marginalised young people with resources and opportunities. Mubarek is focused on achieving this for young people connected to the Richmond and Collingwood public housing estates.

Work days: Wednesday and Thursday

Contact: Mubarek.Imam@ds.org.au

Nyayoud Jice, Youth Peer Leader (she/her pronouns)

Nyayoud has a Bachelor of Criminology and Certificate IV in Community Services. Her theoretical training has been complimented with experiences at CMY as an intern and a Youth Ambassador at City of Melbourne. She has a commitment to engaging disengaged young people and supporting them to make positive contributions to the community.

Work days: Wednesday and Thursday

Contact: Nyayoud.Jice@ds.org.au

Reem MohamedYouth Peer Leader (she/her pronouns)

Reem is a young resident of the Carlton estate who is mad for sports, games and organising her peers. Reem brings to our team an enthusiasm, knowledge, creativity and unbounded joy for what young people can achieve given the opportunity. Since joining us Reem has already started a youth leadership network that will bring together young men and young women to respond to identified needs for Carlton and working to achieve their vision for young residents.

Work days: Wednesday and Friday

Contact: Reem.Mohamed@ds.org.au


Rowan Arahia, Youth & Family Practitioner

Rowan identifies as Maori (Indigenous/New Zealander)  and comes with a lived experience of mental health issues and recovery.  Rowan’s work experience includes; Indigenous health, youth work, community events, activism, advocacy and complex mental health.   Rowan is a qualified psychotherapist and has a Masters of Indigenous Studies on the oppression of ethnicity, gender, class and sexuality.  Rowan uses their lived experience to connect with individuals, families and communities with the hope of supporting them to discover and create the lives they want.

Work days: Wednesday to Friday

Contact: Rowan.Arahia@ds.org.au

Ruby Cameron, Youth Development Practitioner(they/them pronouns)

Ruby is a Queer, Aboriginal, musician and youth worker. Their work is focused on empowering young people of Queer and Trans lived experiences and challenging the structural and systemic frameworks of oppression. They’re completing a bachelor degree in Social Science and have worked in mental health, alcohol and other drug support services. Ruby is the lead worker of the Queerspace Youth program.

Work days: Monday, Wednesday and Friday

Contact: ruby.cameron@ds.org.au

Sandra Tay, Community Development Practitioner (she/her pronouns)

Sandra is a youth advocate, passionate about civic participation and social equity. She is a Master of Public Policy Graduate with fvie years of experience working with diverse children and young people at the program as well as at the strategic and policy development levels. She is a believer in the power of community-led change, committed to empowering young people and marginalised communities to participate in and lead socio-political processes that affect them. Her role as Community Development practitioner is pivotal in connecting young people, Council and key stakeholders and facilitating better engagement of young people in new and existing opportunities across the City of Melbourne.

Work days: Tuesday to Friday

Contact: Sandra.Tay@ds.org.au


Sarah Nega, Family and Community Development Practitioner (she/her pronouns)

Pivotal to our engagement and therapeutic relationships with the local African Australian population, Sarah has a unique capacity to create change. Leveraging on a community development qualification and supreme communication skills, Sarah is able to reach and engage families and individuals that other services struggle to engage, or worse have failed. Sarah builds trusting relationships in order to undertake fearless advocacy, case management, and incidental counseling to achieve outcomes for some of our most vulnerable and marginalized women, children and elders.

Work days: Mondays, Tuesday, Thursday (every second Monday off)

Contact: 0488 515 400 or sarah.nega@ds.org.au

Wafa Musa, Peer Leader (she/her pronouns)

Joining our youth peer leader team in 2013, Wafa’s involvement has been pivotal to the success of the All Girlz program. Seeking to engage young women of African and Muslim background, the All Girlz program is a powerful reminder of what is possible in community. A recent graduate of Early Childhood Studies, Wafa’s skills are useful in ensuring our programing is family friendly. Wafa’s skill and expertise in child development has given many parents the confidence to trust our service.

Work days: Friday’s

Contact: wafa.musa@ds.org.au