Regularly, we will feature a member of the HBNC team, giving you a chance to Meet the Neighbours. The goal is to highlight and celebrate the people at the heart of our organisation, who work tirelessly to make the Wide Bay Burnett community a stronger and more resilient one.

Meet Susan Chalker - Social Prescription Link Worker

Tell us a bit about yourself

I've lived in the local area for over 20 years, after moving here to start as a graduate nurse at the HBH in 2000. I have three beautiful children who have now all become teenagers in what feels like the blink of an eye! I love swimming in the ocean, running in my local neighbourhood or down to parkrun on a Saturday morning, and riding my bike before the sun comes up, and all the traffic starts tooting.

What is a quick summary of your professional background?

For 15 years, myself and my partner Ian ran the Grand Hotel in Howard which fulfilled a lifelong dream to own a country pub. It was hard work, but also lots of fun, and a completely life changing experience. Since leaving the hotel a couple of years ago and struggling to find my purpose I decided to go back to Uni to gain knowledge and develop the skills to support people to navigate the challenges of life. 

What drew you to work with HBNC?

The connection within the community that HBNC creates with their innovative and responsive programs is what drew me to the community centre and also because I hope to also contribute toward making a positive difference, especially for the vulnerable and disadvantaged members of the community.

How do you see your role making a difference in the lives of the community’s most vulnerable?

As a Link worker in the new Social Prescription program I am keen to work with people who are socially isolated or lonely, and support them to make meaningful and lasting connections with activities and groups in the local community, so they can feel a part of something, and hopefully foster a sense of inclusion, purpose and joy in their lives. 

What’s one thing you hope to see happen or change for our community?

A good neighbourhood is where it's at! I love the idea of everyone coming together to support each other.

For people to become more aware of the struggles of others and show compassion, kindness and generosity to their neighbours.