- Studied: Geography
- Now works as: Research Officer, Anglicare Sydney
As a Research Officer in mapping and data systems for Anglicare Sydney, Alison Moffitt uses her Geography skills every day in her job supporting a charity which provides family support, aged care services, migrant support, disability support and many other services.
Alison works on a range of social research and spatial analysis projects across these different areas of Anglicare’s service, and also provides support for strategic planning and data management across the organisation.
"I loved studying environmental and human geography at university. My geography subjects gave me practical experience alongside very useful theory, which has helped me greatly in the workforce," said Alison.
"During my studies in geography I learnt how to use GIS to make maps and interpret spatial data, I improved my skills in excel, I had opportunities to conduct interviews and surveys on field trips and I also had opportunities to analyse the raw data we collected. Now I use these skills every day at work," said Alison.
Alison has worked on Anglicare projects including coordinating the logistics for a national survey of household food insecurity among low income families, providing demographic information to help the Aged Care division with planning and tendering, and investigating levels of disadvantage and existing service provision to help the Community Care division work out where to establish their new services.
Having worked at Anglicare for three years, Alison loves her fulfilling job and the dynamic people she works with.
"It’s really satisfying to know that my work leads to better outcomes for the people we serve, either by directly improving services or by trying to influence public policy. It’s also a great team environment to work in. My colleagues both within and outside the organisation are friendly, passionate and keen to collaborate so that our work can have the most positive impact it can."
Alison started working at Anglicare as a casual worker one day a week while still at university, after finding out about the opportunity through a personal contact. By the time she graduated, there was an opening for a full time research position and she’d impressed them enough to get the job.
"My favourite thing about my job is the opportunity to meet people from so many different walks of life through interviews, focus groups, meetings, conferences, visits to different service sites and even visits to supporters working in swanky city offices. I’ve also had opportunities to travel to NGO conferences in Canberra and Melbourne, where I have met other researchers, advocates and social workers who are doing amazing things," said Alison.
"The charity sector is a great area to work in because the work is so fulfilling. It’s a really diverse sector which is heaps of fun to work in. Some organisations try to change things on the ground, and some organisations try to change things by influencing the public and the government. Both kinds of organisations are exciting to work in because you get to see change that is meaningful.
"As you can imagine, not-for-profit organisations aren’t really places that you’d work in to make a truckload of money. Instead, the people that work in the sector are driven by a passion for the work that they do, whether it’s helping people, helping ecosystems or both of those things at once. It’s a really dynamic work environment."