Meet our team
Learn why we love the work we do.
The Family Works Central team truly cares about children, families and whānau. We’re passionate about building strong, safe, connected communities and creating opportunities for individuals.
Muhammad Naseem (Joe) Asghar
Chief Executive, Presbyterian Support Central
Joe Asghar’s multi-layered experience spans health and government and includes roles at the Royal Society of New Zealand, Diabetes NZ, ACC and Physiotherapy NZ.
Actively involved in a range of community groups and networks, Joe does volunteer work with the homeless, is a Justice of the Peace, chair of Te Awakairangi Health Network, a member of the Pharmacy Council Professional Conduct Committee and General Practice NZ Strategic Council. He’s also heavily involved with Rotary and the Onslow Community Church in Ngaio, Wellington.
He considers the work of PSC and its amazing team as essential in today’s society where those in need are often overlooked or left alone. Joe is driven by the objects of the organisation to be there for those who need that help and support
In his spare time, Joe enjoys fishing, DIY and going to the movies with his family.
General Manager, Family Works Central
Julia has been a senior leader in the social services sector for over 20 years. She has been working in children and family services, in both government and non-government roles, throughout her career. Julia qualified as a social worker and has moved from being a practitioner to a senior manager in both the UK and NZ. Julia has managed numerous projects, from design through to implementation, and ensured quality was a core component in every project.
Julia sits on several local and international Boards within her scope of practice. These Boards are all promoting quality practice and supporting mechanisms for community engagement and empowerment.
Family Dispute Resolution Manager
Ko Taupari te maunga
Ko Waikato te awa
Ko Queen of the Mercy te waka
Ko Scotland te iwi
Te Whanganui a Tara ahau
Ko Kathryn Gray toku ingoa
No reira, tēnā koutou,tēnā koutou, tēnā tātou katoa
Kathryn is a Social Worker in Schools (SWiS) for Family Works since September 2020. Kathryn has held a SWiS role for five years previously for Barnardos and has worked with primary and intermediate aged children for thirteen years.
Kathryn has a range of experience in the community and statutory settings, having worked at Oranga Tamariki for two years and for other non-government agencies for about ten years.
Kathryn is interested in working with children, young people and their families about a range of things; areas of interest include working with anxiety, parenting and groups. She is particularly passionate about this age group and about children and young people being able to achieve in education.
- Bachelor of Arts in Psychology
- Master’s Applied in Social Work
- SWRB – Social Workers Registration Board
- ANZASW – Aotearoa New Zealand Association of Social Workers
Nylek M Nair
Kaiwhakarite for Kōrero Manaaki
Nylek is the Kaiwhakarite for the Family Works Kōrero Manaaki programme, based in Whanganui. He is responsible for the mahi such as keeping in contact with school principals, liaising with the Kaihautū (externally appointed counsellors and social workers), managing the programmes workflow and reporting back to Ministry of Education.
Nylek has spent many years working for community organisations and has experience in facilitating bridge education programs for alcohol and other drug dependent clients, facilitating intensive Nga Kakano program, conducting 1:1 case sessions (e.g. utilising CBT, te whare tapa wha, transactional analysis, addiction and brain, relapse prevention, power & control/equality wheel, MI, etc), facilitating te awhina groups and AOD assessments.
Nylek has worked with a wide range of people with diverse backgrounds and cultures (e.g. Māori, Pākehā, Indian, LGBQT) and is trained with the requirements of the Treaty of Waitangi, working with Māori, working with whanau through MHERC, Matua Raki and the Ministry of Health.
- Master of Social Work (Distinction)
- Master of Business Information Systems
- Bachelor of Science (Chemistry)
- SWRB – Social Workers Registration Board
Raewyn has worked as a trauma counsellor since 2013. She completed a diploma of trauma management, an advanced study of grief and loss counselling and has also trained in Psychological Fist Aid.
Her experience also includes facilitating therapeutic and educational community group work on marriage/couple and parenting classes.
Raewyn is also a specialist in early intervention for psychosocial planning in natural disasters involving Trauma recovery in Communities and Managing High Arousal After Trauma; and she facilitated community groups for families and youth after the Christchurch 2011 earthquakes.
Working with the International Critical Incident Stress foundation, Raewyn is an approved instructor for the Individual Crisis Intervention and peer Support programme and developed a Comprehensive Crisis Preparation and Response for the workplace.
Outside of therapy, education and community support, Raewyn is a New Zealand author of young adult fiction stories.
Interim Team Manager
Lisa has held a broad range of transformation and management roles in diverse settings that include social services, Auckland Council, advertising and media and adult education. With a Masters in Advanced Leadership Practice from Massey University Lisa has a keen interest in supporting teams and individuals to operate at their best and has designed and implemented extensive programs of change and organisational development to achieve this.
Lisa also has a Masters of Technological Futures and Business from Tech Futures Lab where she is now a part-time Advisor for Masters candidates as they develop practical projects utilising emerging technologies to solve complex challenges, often in the social sector. She is a former board member for Transparency International and has extensive experience designing and implementing facilitated workshops in business, council and community settings.
Outside of this mahi Lisa and her partner are building a home and planting a food forest on their land in Taranaki.
Taiana has a bi-cultural degree in Social Work and has significant experience in supporting children, families and young people in the community. She is an experienced group facilitator and fully trained professional supervisor.
In her spare time Taiana enjoys volunteer work, particularly leadership within the Girls Brigade and other church-based programmes.
Shelly has been with Family Works since 2011 as a Practice Leader and Social Worker. In her role Shelly undertakes counselling, social work and advocacy, and case management. She provides internal supervision to other Family Works staff as well as auditing files and case management.
Shelly is an experienced and accredited Restorative Justice facilitator (including family violence RJ), she is also a Parenting Through Separation and Incredible Years group facilitator.
Shelly holds a Bicultural Bachelor’s Degree in Social Work, as well as certificates for Biculturalism in Practice, Teacher Aide, and Child Protection Studies.
Outside of work Shelly volunteers for local organisations and schools, play softball and manages both softball and rugby teams.
Social Worker in Schools Team Leader
Robern Austin is the social worker in schools (SWiS) team leader for Family Works. Robern has been with Family Works in her role since January 2017 before this she worked as one of the social workers and FDR mediators for Family Works Upper Hutt for 2 ½ years.
Robern has 17 years experience as a social worker in a variety of roles; from working as a rape crisis worker to working with vulnerable children in the care and protection team at Child Youth and Family. Robern has a passion for supporting our most vulnerable and ensuring the delivery of safe practice.
Robern has facilitated a range of parenting programmes and youth groups and has her Diploma in Counselling and is a registered social worker.