STEPS Group Welcomes New Charity Team Leaders
A former Miss Sunshine Coast fundraiser and a popular former Fraser Coast local councillor have been announced as the new senior leaders in STEPS Group’s charity team.
Rebecca Whitehouse and Anne Nioa are starting their positions this week, with Anne having relocated to the Sunshine Coast over the Christmas break.
For new STEPS Charity executive manager Ms Whitehouse, the relocation is also a much-anticipated homecoming to work on the Sunshine Coast.
“I have had a close working relationship with STEPS group for several years, working alongside the charity team as the director of the event company who has managed the past three STEPS Grand Winter Balls,” Ms Whitehouse said.
“My appointment to the role of executive manager of STEPS Charity is one that will provide me with the scope to use my past skills and business acumen to innovate and grow the charity which has been built on solid foundations.
“The insight and relationships forged over this time will prove invaluable and provide a great foundation on which we will continue to build from.”
Ms Whitehouse, originally from Windsor, Brisbane was named Miss Sunshine Coast in 1997, back when the annual award recognised fundraising for the then Cerebral Palsy League charity.
STEPS Group managing director Carmel Crouch said Ms Whitehouse’s background in events, fundraising and business made her a perfect fit for the role.
“We have a strong foundation for Bec to build on and a very ambitious strategy for the future of STEPS Group,” Ms Crouch said.
“In 2020, we want to raise the funds for our next expansion to the STEPS Pathways College, which will potentially double our capacity and provide even more places for people with a disability to learn to live and work independently.”
Ms Whitehouse is joined in the charity team by new STEPS Autism Treehouse charity manager Anne Nioa, who has a very personal connection to the organisation.
“I have been part of the STEPS Group family since 2018 when my daughter Ariana enrolled at STEPS Pathways College,” Ms Nioa said, who has moved from Maryborough for the job.
“The work that STEPS Autism Treehouse does to educate families and improve the lives of those with autism is absolutely life-changing. My daughter recently graduated from STEPS Pathways College and is living independently on the Sunshine Coast.
“I am delighted to have an opportunity to give back and expand the work of an organisation that has done so much for me, and to be able to do so and live on the Sunshine Coast is a wonderful bonus.”
Ms Crouch said Ms Nioa’s experience in local government and her personal connection with STEPS Group and STEPS Autism Treehouse would ensure a bright future for the organisation.
“Anne has come to us with a vision of expanding our STEPS Autism Treehouse services to regional communities north of the Sunshine Coast, where there is an enormous need for support services for families living with autism,” Ms Crouch said.
“She will be continuing our very successful programs in the Sunshine Coast region and also expanding the number of events to help families further afield.”