Bilal Darwich – Director

My name is Bilal and I am the Managing Director of Maple Youth Services. 

With over 7 years experience in the child protection field, both in frontline youth work positions and senior management positions, I have developed a passion to helping children and young people in care, having devoted my working career to date to serving those encompassed within this realm. The advocacy and support for those who are unable to support themselves is a moral driver for me, as I continue to provide brighter futures for our vulnerable children in the community, alongside my team. A big part of me being able to achieve my personal and career goals is thanks to the awesome management and youth work team I work with. So enough about me and allow me to give you an insight into a typical day of MYS operations.

Every time we receive a request, it usually goes a little something like this ‘ Kid does not attend school, is currently being medicated, is extremely defiant and does not listen to workers, and can become aggressive towards workers’. We all look at each in the office and go “Not for long, they need the Maple touch”. I have lost count of the amount of praise and disbelief Maple receives on a daily basis due to the immediate turn around in these kids. There is no doubt in my mind that we are the best in the business, I have supreme confidence in every person on our team. I know first-hand the sacrifice you all make for the benefit of these children and young people, being there day in day out regardless of the special occasion you are missing out on. There’s no doubt we all make an everlasting positive impact and memory in their lives. My advice would be to make the memory for the right reason. You finish your shift and go home to your family, they get handed over to the next YW and their life continues.

I believe every child is one caring adult away from being a success. Right now, as YWs you have the power to say ‘I will not let their story end like this’. Don’t waste it.

Mohammed Hammoud – Head of Operations

For those of you who may or may not know me, my name is Mohammed, Moey, Moe, whatever you prefer! I have been working for Maple for 8 weeks now and it has been such a pleasing experience. In 2011, I commenced studying a Bachelor of Policing Studies with every intention of wanting to become a police officer. During that time, a friend of mine told me about youth work and what the role entails. I thought it was intriguing and it aligned with my availabilities considering I was a full-time university student. After my very first opportunity, I fell in love with the job and realised that this is something I not only enjoyed, but also felt an incredible amount of comfort knowing I was potentially making a difference in a child or young person’s life. I finished my degree, scratched the idea of wanting to be a police officer and delved into the realm of social work. In 2017, I joined the Department of Communities and Justice where I was a Caseworker and a Manager Caseworker. My role consisted of making decisions regarding the safety and welfare of children. Other duties included being an agent for change in the lives of children and investigating the safety and well-being of children, amongst many other responsibilities. 

A little bit about me, I’m a bit of a sporting addict and I will watch any sport you can think of. My favourites are Rugby League, Soccer and Cricket! I enjoy spending quality family time with my loved ones and yes, if you haven’t noticed already from my photo… surprise! I am Lebanese. 

I look forward to meeting you all and continuing this honourable journey of changing children’s lives forever. Always remember;

‘Change the world of a child and you change the world’.

Jeanne Pascual – HR Generalist

My name is Jeanne, and I joined Maple Youth Services as the HR Generalist in November 2022. I graduated with a Bachelor of Business (Hotel Management) and have worked in the accommodation sector for the past 7 years, doing administrative and managerial roles. I wanted to expand my knowledge and skills within a different industry, and am grateful to join the Maple team. I am loving the opportunity to learn all about the child protection industry and getting to meet all of you wonderful Youth Workers, and see the positive impact that you make on every child and young person.

A fun fact about me is that I love to travel, and was even given the opportunity to work for Walt Disney World in 2016! This was a memorable time where I was able to make “magic” happen for all the children and their families.

I look forward to learning more about the child protection sector, and how I can support you as Youth Workers to provide the best care to our children and young people.

Imogen Sharpe – Senior Team Leader

My name is Imogen and I am one of your dedicated Senior Team Leaders at Maple Youth Services. 
I bring just over 4 years of experience in the child protection realm in a wide range of roles including case management of foster children, senior youth work and even field-based roles such as emergency youth work and outreach services.  

I began my career with a simple goal of wanting to help disadvantaged children and young people in my local community, This goal of simply wanting to help eventually grew and I developed a strong passion and a love for working with some of the most vulnerable, disadvantaged and complex children and young people within the Out of Home Care sector.

As one of your Team Leaders, I hope to pass on some of my skills, knowledge, experience, and passion and to provide support and guidance to each and every one of you that dedicate yourselves day in and day out to providing care to our children and young people.

Lee-James Mcmahon – Team Leader

Hello all, for those of you who don’t know me yet, I am Lee, one of your team leaders. I have been with Maple now for around 8 weeks and so far, it has been a great pleasure working alongside the youth workers and getting to know the kids that we support.  

I am originally from Glasgow / Scotland and have now been in Australia coming up to 1.5 years. My passion for supporting children originally stemmed from my education, I completed my diploma in social care services before moving on to children and youth management. I have more than 8 years’ experience working in the youth and child protection sector. Providing care, support, and guidance to children who have had complex backgrounds including previous trauma, challenging behaviours, mental health, or disabilities. Throughout my years within this care sector, I have always had one goal and that is for everyone have the best support and outcome in life along with being treated individually to their own needs. 

I originally started off working as a youth worker within the residential setting before working my way up to a Team leader, Senior house leader and then Manager. So, I have been in the youth worker role myself and can understand what struggles everyone can face and hopefully with my own experiences I am able to guide and support you all to provide that best care that we can for all the kids. 

I look forward to working with everyone going forward. 

Be the change, that you wish to see in the world

Moneca Shaaya – HR Generalist

Hello all, my name is Moneca with an E, and I am the new HR Generalist for the MYS HR department. I have a background in Human Resources and a Diploma in HR Management and Business. I have previously worked as a Recruitment Consultant in the white- and blue-collar sector, then moved into a HR Assistant role.

More recently I worked as a HR Compliance Manager for a company specialising in support services for people with mental illnesses within the Justice system. I am hoping to one day become a HR Manager, or Head of People and Culture. 🙂 

Rahil Prasad – Accounts Officer

Hi, my name is Rahil Prasad and I have recently moved to Australia to pursue my studies and explore my career opportunities. I come from an accounting and finance background with a number of years of track records. I had been involved in work such as financial management, tax preparation and bookkeeping with an objective to promote growth and efficiency for any company I work for. 

I am a very easy-going person who loves to socialise, make new friends, explore nature and outdoor activities, reading, being updated with current affairs and going on dates. 

The reason why I joined Maple Youth Services was due to the work they do for our young people to live with stability and producing a brighter future. As a growing company, it has been a privilege for me to take this opportunity and utilise my knowledge and experience in achieving growth and efficiency and giving back to society.  

Manuella Ibrahim – HR Administrator

My name is Manuella and I am the HR Administrator for Maple Youth Services. I am currently studying to become a teacher for physical education for secondary students. Before realising that I wanted to be a teacher, I also wanted to be a police officer or a physiotherapist. My background is half Sudanese and half Armenian. I previously had retail experience where I worked at Tommy Hilfiger, Polo Ralph Lauren and HypeDc. I also played volleyball professionally for 7-8 years and although I played volleyball, I love watching the NBA. I was a coach for NSW Volleyball for about a year, where I coached youth from ages 7-18. Being a coach made me realise that I wanted to work with kids more and that is why I applied with Maple, and I am forever grateful for this opportunity. 

A fun fact about me is that I love to eat. You will always find me eating in the office. My favourite cuisines are Mexican and Thai, can never wrong with Pad Thai and a Burrito.

Elisha Tulay – Team Leader

My name is Elisha, and I am a Team Leader at Maple Youth Services. I graduated with a Bachelor of Social Work and a Bachelor of Criminal and Community Justice and knew when I finally finished at university, I wanted to go straight into the line of Child Protection.
I first began my journey with Maple as a Youth Worker. Working alongside such amazing children and dedicated Youth Workers truly made me feel like I had landed my dream job. So naturally, when the opportunity presented to become a Team Leader for MYS, there was no question in my mind that this was the perfect next step for my career.
My heart has always been set on preserving families and ensuring the safety of children. I am extremely excited to bring my passion and experience to this role and contribute to the positive impact we make at Maple Youth Services.

Julie Iata – Team Leader

Hi, my name is Julie, and I am one of the Team Leaders here at MYS. My journey started with an inspiration to help our young people be the best versions of themselves and turn their disadvantages into an advantage. To have great leaders and role models for our future, I believe it starts first with our children and young people. This is why I chose to support and help our kids the best way I can. 

My background in OOHC extends beyond 3 years and I continue to learn, as I delve into this journey. Fun fact, I have a love for dogs but too scared to have one.