Introducing our newly appointed Alumni Committee members.
Jennifer Kausei is an Australia Awards alumnus who is intrigued by how stories are told. It was her love for listening to the radio and reading newspapers that led her to graduate in 2003 with a Bachelor of Arts, double major, in Journalism and Language and Literature from the University of the South Pacific’s Laucala campus in Fiji. ‘I was fascinated by bringing stories to life and having the audience engage with it‘ Jennifer explains. As the role of technology evolves, so too do our modes of communication through the various platforms available. Jennifer sees this an extremely important consideration when communicating with an audience, to ensure ideas are meaningfully engaged with.
Jennifer is now the National Coordinator of the Australian Humanitarian Partnership, and is responsible for the overall coordination and liaison between DFAT in Canberra, Vanuatu’s INGOs, as well as partners and stakeholders, including the National Disaster Management Office (NDMO). Communications plays a prominent role within her scope of responsibilities, particularly as it involves establishing a collective collaboration between DFAT, INGO’s and Vanuatu Government stakeholders. Jennifer further explains ‘it is really important that key messages are relayed effectively so allocated funding is delivered correctly and reporting procedures accurately reflect the progress made. It is about ensuring there is accountability‘.
It is Jennifer’s passion for communications and collaboration that attracted her to a role within the Australia Awards Alumni Committee, particularly in providing an alumni ‘voice’. ‘For me, it was about having the platform to speak and share stories that could encourage and benefit those going through the Australia Awards program. From a communications perspective, being able to speak with people whilst considering the context of Vanuatu was very important. It was about catering to the individual so they could fully embrace the Australia Awards experience‘ Jennifer states.
By understanding the interconnectedness between professional sectors in Vanuatu and through effectively relaying information, Jennifer sees the spheres in which alumni work across as an instrumental mechanism for strengthening linkages and furthering Vanuatu’s development.