A little bit of context
Creating a future-friendly environment for our ageing population requires fundamental changes throughout healthcare organisations and in policy. As a clinical neuropsychologist and scientist, I believe my research, clinical, and influencing skills will enable me to be a transformational leader who uses evidence to enact changes in management and practice, to influence policy and decision making, and ultimately change the future for older people.
But there’s a problem
A lack of equality
Although approximately equivalent numbers of women and men start careers in science, women are in a profound minority globally in leading science positions and executive decision-making roles. By the time careers progress to professorial level there is profound gender inequality, with women making up only 10% of top level scientists.
We need strong scientific leaders to advance our exploration and understanding of the issues affecting older people. Giving women leadership and strategic skills early in their careers is a way to ensure they can act as confident, capable leaders who can make an impact later on, whether in academia or at the interface between science and decisionmaking.
I passionately believe in advocating for diversity in science and management, and am particularly dedicated to sponsoring women to have a clear voice and a seat at the leadership table. It has been demonstrated that diverse teams with an equal gender balance are more efficient, take more risks and solve problems more effectively.
It is therefore critical that women take an equal place at the highest levels of leadership, particularly in science.
Here’s what we’re doing about it
Addressing the gender imbalance: Homeward Bound
Homeward Bound is a state-of-the-art 12-month leadership and strategic program that aims to amplify the influence and impact of women with science backgrounds to lead the world towards a more sustainable future. The leadership program ends with a three-week intensive expedition to Antarctica (31 December 2018 – 30 January 2019). Why Antarctica? Because its isolation, and pristine awe-inspiring environment will inspire and challenge us, and push us to explore our capabilities.
I am one of the lucky 75 women worldwide chosen to participate this year! I will be part of the third cohort of women as part of the 10-year vision of Homeward Bound: to equip and network 1,000 women from science to lead, influence and contribute to policy and decision-making as it informs the future of our planet.
Homeward Bound will help make a group of brilliant women into extraordinary leaders who will bring these skills back to Melbourne, Australia to mentor the next generation of women leaders.
How you can help
I am passionate about this cause, but need funds to secure my position in this program.
The program costs about AUD40,000 for each woman to participate. Luckily Homeward Bound are able to cover half the costs for me, and I have had some sponsorship from my employers (thank you to the Department of Psychiatry, The University of Melbourne; Professor Edmond Chiu and the Academic Unit for Psychiatry of Old Age; and the Neuropsychiatry Unit, RMH!). However, I must pull together about AUD13,000 to cover my fees for the flights and accommodation and other costs associated with travelling to the bottom of the world.
Your donation will help me cover my fees and travel, help support and develop female scientists all around the world, and ensure that the needs of older people are kept on the agenda.
What's in it for you?
Please see the perks listed on this page - I'm also open to suggestions so let me know what your thoughts are!
It will take more than a boat-full of women to change the world.
Join us in being a part of the change.
Consider the world you'd like to live in, grow old in, and pass on to future generations.
Any donations, big or small, will be welcomed with heartfelt thanks.