Our team

Shona Reid
Guardian/Training Centre Visitor
Shona is an Eastern Arrernte woman and comes from a family who has a long legacy of working with First Nation children, families and communities. Having previously worked in the child protection system, she has worked hard to build First Nation governance, leadership and reconciliation and playing her part in building a more culturally inclusive community; where true inclusivity is observed through the respect for diverse, meaningful and substantive relationships and engagement is grounded in honesty, integrity, transparency and truth. When she is not working, Shona is busy keeping her family of nine close, strong and connected.
Read more about Shona
Merike Mannik
Principal Advocate
Merike joined the advocacy team in November 2018, with a strong background in out-of-home care. She has worked in non-government and the public sector, including foster care placement co-ordination and support, carer assessment and support, carer approval and review, project management and legislation implementation. Family and children are the light of Merike’s life and she lives the adage “it takes a village to raise a child”. She describes herself as ‘a people-person, who is bright and bubbly and always sees the glass as half full”. She loves movies, meditation and a great cup of coffee shared with good company.
Read more about Merike
Courtney Mostert
Senior Advocate
Courtney has completed a Bachelor in Psychology and has worked for a non-government foster care agency and for the Department for Child Protection. Within out-of-home-care, she has experience in the recruitment, assessment, approval and review of foster carers, as well as the support of foster care families. Courtney enjoys watching documentaries, going out for breakfast and spending time with her friends, family and dog, Gus.
Read more about Courtney
Ashleigh Marafioti
After completing qualifications in social work and psychology, Ashleigh worked in a non-government organisation where she passionately committed to ensuring young people successfully transitioned from care, feeling confident, independent and enthusiastic about their future. Ashleigh then worked at the Department of Child Protection within the out-of-home care space. Ashleigh looks forward to meeting with new young people, listening to their voice, ensuring they feel heard and supported. When not working you’ll often find Ashleigh at the gym ‘pumping iron’ or walking the linear trail.
Read more about Ashleigh
Dani Court
Dani has a background in law, previously working as Children’s Representative in the Youth Court, advocating for the best interests of children who are subject to care and protection proceedings, before joining the advocacy team with the Office of the Guardian. Dani is passionate about advocating for children’s rights and in giving a voice to vulnerable children and young people and believes that every child should be afforded the opportunity to reach their full potential. When not at work, Dani enjoys reading, exercising and socialising, and especially her son, husband and dog!
Read more about Dani
Claire Townshend
After completing a Bachelor of Nursing degree, Claire has spent the last 8 years working in Child Protection. Claire also has a background in education, both in primary and tertiary settings, supporting children and young people. Claire is passionate about ensuring that the voice of the child is listened to, and that children and young people feel safe and supported. Outside of work Claire can be found at the beach, going for walks and spending time with family and friends (including her cats).
Read more about Claire
Shaylem Wilson
Principal Aboriginal Advocate
Shaylem is a proud Ngarrindjeri woman who understands the importance of culture and connection. Shaylem has previously worked in foster care and education supporting First Nations children and adults to thrive and reach their full potential. Shaylem is passionate about supporting Aboriginal children to have their voice heard and be the leaders of their own lives. Outside of work, Shaylem loves cooking, spending time with her partner and cats and watching Netflix.
Read more about Shaylem
Alicia Smith
Principal Policy Officer
Alicia has a background in law and human rights, with a strong passion for advocacy, engaging with communities and striving for change. Working across the Northern Territory, Victoria and South Australia, Alicia has diverse experience in areas including equal opportunity law, youth justice, tertiary education and working with victims and survivors of family violence and child sexual abuse. When not working, you’re most likely to find her at her piano or guitar – until her dogs bark to go for a walk!
Read more about Alicia
Jade Mathewson
Senior Policy Officer
Jade has qualifications in law and social science, previously working in policy roles across Child Protection and Aboriginal Affairs and Reconciliation. She has a strong passion for ensuring that policy reflects the voices of children and young people, and making sure that the decision-makers who aren’t working directly with children and young people don’t lose sight of what’s really important. When not working or doing her mountains of housework, you’ll find Jade walking her dog, reading a good book or camping with her partner and kids.
Read more about Jade
Paige Lagonicos
Business Manager
Paige joined the OGCYP team in November 2023. She spent the last four years working at the Department for Child Protection in various corporate administration roles. Paige has a Bachelor’s Degree in Marketing, and her strengths include streamlining administration processes to make workplaces more efficient. Paige’s ideal weekend consists of good coffee, a Pilates class, and a beach walk to soak up the sun!
Read more about Paige
Nadia Baldassi-Winderlich
Principal Visiting Advocate
Before joining the Training Centre Visitor Unit, Nadia worked as a community lawyer with a focus on child protection, family violence, and youth crime. She’s lived in Alice Springs, Tennant Creek, and Melbourne, but is an Adelaide girl originally. Nadia is passionate about supporting young people to access their own autonomy and self-advocate. Outside of work, she loves catching up with friends, babysitting her new niece, and reading… But if the Western Bulldogs are playing, she’s glued to the TV.
Read more about Nadia
Hamish McKenzie
Senior Advocate (Child and Young Person’s Visitor Program)
Originally Hamish worked as a teacher, particularly in rural and remote schools, before moving into the child protection space. Whether in schools or with the Department for Child Protection, Hamish has a strong relational work focus and firmly believes it is through forming meaningful and consistent relationships that positive outcomes can be achieved for young people. When not working, Hamish can be found hanging out with his daughters, who have him wrapped around their little fingers, bike riding and spending time at the beach surfing. In between all this, Hamish has a soft spot for his pets – even if that only consists of one moody cat and four chickens!
Read more about Hamish
Em Rozee
Advocate (Child and Young Person’s Visitor Program)
Em has been working in the youth sector for the last 15 years designing and facilitating empowerment, leadership and therapeutic programs. Complimented by her outdoor education background Em enjoys supporting young people to recognise their inner strength, try new things, connect to nature and gain skills in mindfulness. Through her various roles Em has led a number of co-design initiatives and consultations with young people for both the government and non-government sectors. Em firmly believes in the power of lived experience to guide policy, drive change and promote child-centred practice. Outside of the office, Em can usually be spotted riding her bike or chasing her children at the beach.
Read more about Em
Aali Buckskin
Advocate (Training Centre Visitor)
Aali is a proud Kaurna Narungga Wirangu woman. Aali is firm in her ability to ensure the generations who follow hers are empowered and strong in cultural identity. Aali is also dedicated to championing the voices of children and young people, and believes cultural identity is key to supporting them. After completing her Bachelor’s Degree in Criminology, Aali previously worked in Aboriginal Education and the Justice sector. In her free time, Aali spends her time with her 3-year-old German Shepherd and in the gym.
Read more about Aali

(c) 2021 Guardian for Children and Young People. Terms & Privacy Policy.

We acknowledge and respect Aboriginal People as the traditional owners
and custodians of the land we live and work on, their living culture and their unique role in the life of South Australia.