Urban Seed has a passionate and talented team of Staff, Residents and Board Members.
David has had extensive experience in bringing people from various backgrounds, agendas and places to positions of unity in order to achieve common goals. He began his working life on the streets of St Kilda working with people experiencing homelessness, drug addiction and prostitution. He then studied Theology and Social Science and gained a doctorate in Pastoral Care and Counselling. He was Principal of Kingsley College for 17 years and founded the Kingsley Counselling Centre.
He was a City of Melbourne Councillor with the Community Services portfolio for 5 years; worked with government and business and has been president of Residents 3000, the political voice of people living in Melbourne's CBD. Most recently he has been the Director of the Bible Society’s Sophia Think Tank, promoting engagement with Scripture for personal and social transformation through public theology and advocacy.
Street & Hospitality Manager
Greg manages our Community Development work across our various sites. He is a long-term community development practitioner. Over the past 25 years he has worked among the urban poor and marginalised in a range of settings. Meanwhile, he has consistently practiced training, coaching and empowerment with young people. With extensive experience working in youth, community, government and higher education, Greg brings leadership, ideas and strategies to Urban Seed’s street and hospitality practices. Greg reflects upon Urban Seed's soulful community development approach at soulfulcd.wordpress.com
Stephen is a husband, a dad, and a foundation member of the Melbourne City Football Club. He works in the area of activism and social change as an educator, activist, speaker, writer and community development worker. Stephen is particularly interested in radical spirituality, incarnational community and the dynamics of personal and social transformation and you can read more about this on his blog. He has helped many think about the nexus between the issues of justice, poverty, consumerism and discipleship in the context of popular global culture. You can find Stephen on Twitter here.
Youth & Schools Manager
Mayra has been hanging around Urban Seed since completing the Praxis Youth Work course in 2007. She has spent time as Youth Worker in the Edge Program since 2008 and was excited to take on the role of Youth and Schools Coordinator in 2012. She is passionate about young people, social justice (raising awareness) and living in community. She also loves traveling and exploring new cultures, being healthy, taking pictures and reading a good book. She lives in Melbourne’s inner west as part of Footscray Salvos Community with her husband Cam, and pet dog Paris and cat Otto.
Team Leader, Melbourne CBD
Sherry is an urban gardener, a neighbourhood development worker, and a transplant from Lexington, Kentucky. With her husband, Geoff, and son, Isaac, she lives at Central House in Melbourne's CBD, serving a residential community life together and engaging nearest neighbourhoods for common good initiatives. She graduated from seminary in 2001 with an M.A. in Intercultural Studies and has worked for almost 20 years in inner city mission, alongside people on the margins. She loves plants and books.
Team Leader, Melbourne CBD
Geoff is a photographer, community development worker, and alongside his wife, Sherry, Team Leader at Central House. Originally from Yackandandah he studied criminology at Melbourne Uni, and in 1998 went to the United States to work on his MA in Intercultural Studies. After 18 years in Kentucky he moved with his family back to Australia to love and serve Melbourne's inner city neighbourhood.
TEAM LEADER, NORLANE
Simon has been exploring community living for more than a decade in some of Australia's most disadvantaged suburbs. Simon joined Urban Seed in Norlane in 2012 with his wife Kaylene and their two boys Barwon and Jarrah, in order to live out their passions for community development and transformation. Simon is excited about exploring how to live out the Gospel in neighborhoods experiencing disadvantage and draws on his studies in social work, theology and his current masters. Simon's other passions include the peace movement where he is involved as a activist and a nonviolence educator, as well as growing his own food and sees the neighborhood as one big potential garden.
TEAM LEADER, NORLANE
Kaylene joined Urban Seed as a resident in Norlane at the beginning of 2012 after spending a year living and working in Alice Springs. She is loving getting to know the community through helping out with Long Room community meals, as well as knitting and sewing her way through craft group. She lives in the local neighbourhood with her husband Simon and her 3 gorgeous children and looks forward to all the future may bring in her new home town.
URBAN STUDIES CENTRE manager
Cassidy's Place Community Organiser
Andreana is a writer and community development practitioner, who loves Urban Seed. Andreana is responsible for philanthropic and individual donor engagement, and also does a bunch of the writing and communications work. Andreana is passionate about fostering communities of healing, hope and justice in the Melbourne CBD, where she lives, high in the sky, with her husband David and some basil plants. Andreana likes to sing and strum a guitar, is a Deacon at Collin Street Baptist Church, and is putting the finishing touches on her Master of Arts in Theology.
CBD OUTREACH COORDINATOR
Educator - Youth and schools team
Sam enjoys great cups of tea and great chats around a crackling fire. She can often be found around the city drinking a hot beverage with the street community. Passionate about young people and people who are sleeping on the streets of Melbourne- Sam loves the city of Melbourne and finds it a great place to call home! Credo is a big part of Sam's life and she finds it important to do life alongside people who have felt pushed to the margins.
A Mornington Peninsula local at heart, Jake enjoys all things beach. Passionate about social change, Jake is interested in supporting young people finding pathways into local communities that are engaged in justice, personal and societal transformation. He also works as an outdoor adventure guide and an educator, and currently studies Theology and Arts. Jake is enjoying being recently married to his beautiful wife and is always interested in a good old fashioned game of chess.
Acting manager - Youth & Schools Team
Evan is a born and bred Melburnian who loves spending time in the city. During a Diploma of Ministry at Tabor College, Evan was encouraged to participate in the Mission Exposure week with Urban Seed, and followed up with a two year stint busking on Swanston Street, meeting locals and participating in the rhythms of the street. He developed a love of learning about different subcultures in Melbourne, and has contributed to a few of these through music production, performance and event management. Evan loves that Urban Seed has a healthy cricket culture and, on another note, needs studio space in the north, preferably a room 5x5 metres, and will be very satisfied in life when he finds one.
Creative Curriculum Co-ordinator - Youth & Schools Team
Blythe has been a part of Urban Seed since 2009, since then she has enjoyed being part of the youth and schools team, working with young people and making them think. She studied art at uni, and loves doing and making creative things. She lives in Preston with her husband and daughter.
Dave is married to Kylie with whom he has lived and worked among marginalised people since their late teens. They travelled to the USA and South Africa to learn about communities doing grassroots community development before moving to a housing commission area in Bendigo in 2005. Since then, with their new son Shane, they have been involved with the local neighbourhood centre and Seeds Bendigo as well as becoming grandparents to Toby & Amity. Dave thinks aloud on his blog. You can find Dave on Twitter here.
Educator - Youth and schools team
Mike is married to Alison and has four kids who are of course the finest people you’ll ever meet. Growing up amongst indigenous communities in Central Australia and then moving to one of the richest suburbs in Melbourne gave him strong opinions about injustice in Australian society, and that’s become focused on building community amongst young people. Mike serves Urban Seed by managing our IT and educating young people for our Youth & Schools department. Easily bored, Mike is also a youth worker for Hawthorn West Baptist Church (www.hwbc.org.au), manages an under-18s venue SUB (www.sub.org.au), has a sideline in graphic & web design and is studying child & adolescent mental health!
Educator - Youth and Schools Team
G’day, my name’s Michael. My passion for community development work is quite young and when I found out about the residential program, I was thrilled! I started volunteering with Urban Seed back in 2012 and then as a resident. I feel extremely privileged to work alongside a group of passionate individuals who care for those experiencing disadvantage. My interests include video games, film and music. Originally hailing from East St Kilda, I have also lived abroad in Vietnam, Burma and The Netherlands, with my parents and older sister. I am also studying a youth work diploma through Praxis this year.