With the recently awarded grant to open a Survivor School in Queensland, and more and more survivors referred to The Freedom Hub, transition coach Hana Berkman is joining the team to support survivors of modern slavery in Queensland rebuild their lives.
Tell us a bit about you.
“I’m a wife, mother and social worker doing life with my family in Brisbane. I’m passionate about social justice and seeing people thrive and live life well.”
What lead you to become a transition coach?
“I’ve been following the journey of Freedom Hub online and via social media for some time now, and was horrified to know the extent to which modern slavery and trafficking is happening in Australia, but excited to see an organisation that was passionately doing something to bring about change in this space. I became keen to see if there might be some way I could use my skills to contribute positively in this area as well.”
What does it mean for you to be a transition coach?
“People have their own inherent dignity and worth, however sometimes the injustices and challenges of this world alter perceptions and beliefs in this. I see my role as a transition coach as one where I can provide a safe space for survivors to be reminded of their dignity, strengths, capacity and self-determination.”
How many survivors will you be supporting in QLD and what will it look like? I believe they are quite spread out in the state, how will that work?
“I believe to start off with, there will be two survivors. Part of my role will be looking at what capacity we have in Queensland (through existing services, and developing a team of volunteers) to provide avenues for support, community, recovery and employment. The hope is that eventually the Freedom Hub may have capacity to develop teams or hubs of people in various regions in Queensland so as to enable survivors to access support in their local community.”
What are the key events/achievements/plans for 2019?
“So the first plan is to get started! This will look something like building networks with the Red Cross and other possible referral agencies, seeing what capacity exists to develop a team of volunteers, and meeting with the survivors.”
Thank you so much Hana for your beautiful work and we can’t wait to hear about and celebrate each step to freedom for survivors of modern slavery in Queensland.