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by | Jan 13, 2022 | Business, Community, Logan, Social

Logan’s mild-mannered change-maker

Logan resident Cath Bartolo is proof that you don’t need to be the loudest voice in the room to make an impact.

Her mild manner and gentle approach belie a tenacity that’s helped change thousands of lives for the better across 30 years of community sector work in the City of Logan.

If you’ve needed help in Logan with housing, employment or raising a family, or have been impacted by substance misuse or domestic and family violence, there’s a good chance you’ve accessed a program Cath’s had a hand in.

Starting work in Logan as a teacher in 1989, Cath soon came into contact with the organisation now known as YFS.

YFS is one of the most respected not-for-profit services in South East Queensland, and Cath has been its CEO for the past 20 years.

In November, Cath’s long-standing community contribution was recognised with the Stan Wells Award, the top honour at the City of Logan Safe City Awards 2021.

 

 

She was surprised and humbled by the recognition, and quick to pay tribute to the people and teams she’s worked with over the years.

 

“The award represents the work of YFS – our staff, partners and clients – rather than what I’ve achieve.

 

“The story of YFS is the story of our staff and clients. It’s the story of our partners – the community, police, politicians and Council.

 

‘YFS can’t work with people in isolation.

 

“It’s critical we work with others and help people navigate the services available, and we’ve been able to be effective because of those partnerships.”

 

Cath has been a part of YFS since 1992, when she became a board member of what was then Youth and Family Services.

Cath says YFS highly values being a part of the Logan community.

 

“We’ve grown up with the city.

 

“Logan is an amazing place and we’re proud to be based here.

 

“The story of YFS is the story of our staff and clients.

 

“It’s the story of our partners, the community, police, politicians and Council.”

 

Throughout her tenure with YFS, Cath has embraced opportunities to partner with the community, government and other organisations to find better ways to help the people who need it the most.

Cath says she has seen first-hand the challenges faced by the most vulnerable in our community, and understands that new approaches are needed to help people create lasting change in their lives.

 

“Our purpose at YFS is to back vulnerable people to overcome adversity and to thrive.”

 

Last year alone, YFS helped 7,000 people through programs at its Slacks Creek headquarters and Jimboomba office.

When asked about career highlights, it’s the stories of the people that are front of mind for Cath.

“We recently celebrated 20 years of service for two of our carwash staff who are working with disabilities.

 

“We’re a local agency, and we know it’s the little things that can make a big difference in people’s lives, especially when it comes to getting a job.

 

“We see what employment brings people, how important it is.”

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