Meet the Team

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Hume City Council Youth Engagement and Pathways Unit (YEP) is a free, generalist service for young people aged 6-24 years who live, work, study or have a connection to Hume. Our service includes the Mental Health, Wellbeing and Leadership Team and the Partnerships, Engagement and Pathways Team.

Meet our professional and supportive staff:

Youth Engagement & Pathways

Cherry Grimwade 

Coordinator Youth Engagement and Pathways

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Cherry started at Hume in June 2021 and leads the Youth Engagement & Pathway Unit.  She has been working in the youth sector for over fifteen years in the local, State and community sectors. She works closely with schools, service providers, community agencies and community leaders to plan and deliver responsive programs for young people in Hume. 

Cherry is into organic gardening, walking her two energic pups, reading and binge-watching Netflix shows!  

Rita Del Pizzo

Business and Program Support Officer


Rita is the Business and Program Support Officer and started at Hume in December 2021. Her role provides administrative and program support to the Youth Engagement and Pathways Unit; and can be contacted for any inquiries regarding programs offered by the YEP Unit.

She has over 15 years’ experience working in various administrative roles within the education and local government sector.

In her spare time Rita enjoys catching up with family and friends.

Mental Health, Wellbeing & Leadership Team

Rebecca Ferris 

Team Leader Mental Health, Wellbeing and Leadership

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Bec is the Team Leader Mental Health Wellbeing and Leadership and started with Hume in November 2021.

Bec has been working with young people for 17 years in Melbourne in a variety of youth work roles such as homelessness support, education and employment services and local government youth services.

In her spare time Bec likes to hang out with her two dogs and cat, get out into nature for hikes and enjoying brunch with family and friends.

Meet the staff within your local region:

Broadmeadows & Central Region

Anna Lewenhagen-Allvin

Youth Support Officer

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Anna is the Youth Support Officer in the Mental Health and Wellbeing Leadership Team in Sunbury and Craigieburn region, joining the team in November 2021.

Anna completed a Bachelor of Youth Work and Youth Studies at RMIT University and has been working and volunteering in the youth work sector for the last 5 years. Anna is a big believer in the importance of community, connection and advocacy and believe they are key to creating equal opportunities. When Anna is not running programs (Freeza) or hanging out at the Sunbury and Craigieburn Youth Centres, she likes to travel, meet new people and see live music!

Sunbury & Craigieburn Region

Lorence (Cruz) Bakri

Mental Health, Wellbeing and Leadership Development Officer

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Cruz is the Mental Health, Wellbeing and Leadership Development Officer responsible for the Broadmeadows and Central Hume region which includes both Broadmeadows Youth Central and Roxburgh Park Youth Centre. He leads a team of Youth Support Officers providing engagement and development opportunities for local young people through youth centres, local schools, and various community spaces.

Cruz has been working with young people for over 13 years, predominantly from the Hume region and has been with Hume City Council since 2011, moving through multiple roles during this time.

When not working, Cruz loves spending quality time with friends and family, watching a good movie or series and spending time outdoors. 

Tyronne Gietzmann

Youth Support Officer

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Tyronne is a Youth Support Officer within the Broadmeadows and Central Hume which includes Broadmeadows Youth Centre and Roxburgh Park Youth Centre.

His position engages with young people and their families across the region in order to provide inclusion, development, growth and various opportunities across a number of community spaces.

Tyronne has been working in the youth sector for over eight years, both in metro and regional Victoria across a diverse cohort of young people ranging from custodial, employment and community services . Tyronne is a driven, passionate and empathetic professional with a wide range of experience, having worked varied roles throughout his career as a youth worker.

Outside of work, Tyronne is an established visual artist, musician and social justice advocate, combining all these to strive for a better tomorrow. He is also a self-confessed geek who loves anything Sci-Fi, Anime or Lord of The Rings.

Middle Years & Transitions

Tamar Spatz

Middle Years and Transitions Officer

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Tamar is Hume City Council’s Middle Years & Transitions Officer. She works with schools, service providers and families to support students aged 6-12 to thrive and stay engaged with school. A key part of Tamar’s role is to understand what students and families need, so she makes sure to have lots of conversations with the local community – to work out where the gaps might be; then, in partnership with schools and services, Tamar will help develop and deliver support and programs.

Tamar has been working with young people for over 20 years, in roles including: community development, case management, programming and education. She just recently started with Hume and is excited to get to know the community.

When Tamar isn’t at work, she loves to dance, share time with friends and spend lots of time in nature.

Partnerships, Engagement & Pathways Team

Jarrod Smith

Team Leader Participation, Engagement and Pathways


Jarrod is the Team Leader of the Participation, Engagement and Pathways team.  

Jarrod has been working at Hume Council for the last 8 years in a variety of roles including sports development and inclusion, economic development and youth partnerships and participation. Prior to joining Hume Jarrod spent several years working both in Australia and overseas with young people in sport for development and youth settlement roles.

In his spare time Jarrod enjoys watching NBA basketball and taking caravan trips with his family. 

Vanessa Petridis

Youth Engagement and Pathways Officer

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Vanessa is the Youth Engagement and Pathways Officer. She has been working with Hume City Council for 12 years moving through multiple roles, and in the youth sector for over five years.

Vanessa works across the municipality and is responsible for the development, delivery and evaluation of skill-building and pathways to education, training and employment for young people predominantly aged 18 to 24 years.

Vanessa loves being creative and having fun exploring different art techniques and styles. She also loves going on long walks with her dogs! 

Richard Craig

Youth Engagement and Pathways Officer

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Richard is one of the Youth Engagement and Pathways Officer. Richard has been working in the youth work sector for 10 years across multiple different roles and started with Hume City Council in April 2022.

Richard supports with the planning, development and delivery of programs that support young people to engage and build positive pathways that can help them find employment or engage in education.

Richard loves football (real football!) and is a passionate supporter of Liverpool FC, and spending time with his family and friends. 

Meg Lawton

Hume Empowering Communities Project Officer

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Meg is the Project Officer for the Hume Empowering Communities Project. 

Meg is currently completing her Master of International Development Practice and has been working and volunteering in the resettlement sector for the last 2 years. She is passionate about community led development and the empowerment it brings.

In her spare time she enjoys painting and exploring national parks!

Emilia Todaro

Youth Engagement & Support Officer

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Emilia is the Youth Engagement & Support Officer and has been a youth worker for over 10 years.

Emilia works with the Youth Engagement & Pathway Officers to deliver recognition, leadership and pathway programs for young people aged 18 to 24 years. Emilia is passionate about empowering young people to identify their strengths and give them the opportunity to be the amazing people that they are and reach their full potential.

Dance, music and reading and having a bash on her electric drumkit makes her heart sing!