Case Manager, Compliance, Alice Springs
Christine Dick was born in Alice Springs and comes from a large Aboriginal family. She joined the Department of Housing in Alice Springs nine years ago as a tenancy officer, bringing a wealth of experience in administration and secretarial skills from previous roles with the Central Land Council, CAAMA, Central Australian Aboriginal Legal Aid Service and Alice Springs Hospital.
In her administration roles Christine spent most of her day in an office environment. With the Department of Housing that changed, as she developed skills in the front-line as she worked as a tenancy officer, housing officer, Indigenous client liaison officer and in her current position as case officer.
“I love the interaction, to actually go out and meet with people”, Christine said.
As a housing officer she learnt about tenancy management, including booking and conducting inspections, managing tenancy debt and making sure tenants understood what was required of them under the Residential Tenancy Act. She also obtained support for tenants so they could have successful tenancies.
Over the years Christine built up a good rapport with a lot of tenants which became useful when she moved in the senior Indigenous client liaison role. Clients sought her out when they contacted the office.
When Indigenous client liaison officer roles were merged with tenancy, Christine transferred into the compliance unit as a case officer. “It was a bit foreign at first as I went from a supporting role to a compliance role.” Christine has come to love her position working with tenants to reduce their antisocial behaviour. “It takes a lot of hard work, lots of talking, lots of visits, but if I can help one person curb their antisocial behaviour, and have a successful tenancy, then that’s the satisfaction I get.”
Christine is happy in her position as the case manager. The work life balance is important to her -- “I just want to be able to do my job well, and go home at the end of the day and relax with my family”.
Despite many years in the workforce Christine said that when she first joined the Public Service she was reluctant to try for more senior roles. “I wouldn’t speak up at meetings; I had no confidence to apply for anything higher.” Time, training and support from colleagues and encouragement from management, changed her view.
To those considering a career with Housing, Christine says: “Take every opportunity given to you, do as many courses that are offered to you, until you find something that you enjoy – you may be like me and fall into the job you love”.