About us

Learn more about the ICLA community.

Our History

ICLA was first established in 1984 to aid a group of boarding house residents in Bondi who were facing eviction. “Rotorua” was a privately-operated boarding house for more than ten years, providing secure, supported accommodation for up to 29 people with psychosocial disabilities. When the property was put up for sale, the residents again faced the insecure tenancy and lack of support often experienced by people living with complex mental illnesses.

A group of local community health workers, students and family members formed the Independent Community Living Association, and were able to negotiate with the NSW Department of Housing to secure appropriate alternative accommodation.

The original mission of ICLA was to promote acceptance, interaction and participation in the wider community with the aim of supporting people with psychosocial disabilities to live in shared accommodation, and avoid homelessness, institutionalisation, hospitalisation or living in sub-standard homes.

Today, Independent Community Living Australia (ICLA) is a not for profit Australian company limited by guarantee, which employs over 130 people and delivers mental health and psychosocial disability services and supports across NSW and delivers virtual peer support Australia wide.

Our Board

Nigel Harvey 

For the past decade, Nigel Harvey has been a Director of Independent Community Living Australia (ICLA) and has Chaired the ICLA Board for the last 4 years. Nigel has extensive experience in the financial world, with over two decades worth of work in the financial commodity markets and corporate finance. Nigel has specialised in the Asia Pacific region including China for energy price hedging and has over 10 years’ experience in business journalism based in London and the Middle East. Nigel has a passion for leading in the non-for-profit sector, having been Director of a surf club and other non-for-profits.  

Nick Coles 

Nick Coles started his working life in executive recruitment in the financial markets. Since then, he has spent the majority of his working life in financial markets research, initially conducting competitor analyses of the investment banking industry. Nick’s research now has a particular focus on investor sentiment of the S&P/ASX200. Nick developed a proprietary, fully integrated, technology platform to run annual research projects and provide clients with sophisticated, actionable insights and analytics. 

Gaybrielle Robinson

Gabbi has almost 20 years’ experience working for organisations with a social purpose. With quality management experience across mental health and addictions, disability, aged care and international quality, risk, health and clinical standards she brings a strong knowledge of regulatory compliance. Gabbi has a keen interest in understanding the experience of people and ensuring compliance has a person-centred approach and provides in-depth understanding of the intricacies of managing compliance within an evolving client care environment.

Jorida Zeneli

Jori’s mission is to contribute to one of society’s greatest challenges – equitable and accessible health care services for everyone through innovative models of care, effective allocation of resources, and technology. With a background in international health economics, public policy and business administration, Jorida has worked in the US, Europe and Australia across Federal and State Government agencies, private and non-for-profit sectors. Jorida specialises on health and social services, investment management, health promotion, disease prevention and social determinants of health and is passionate about mental health and wellbeing.

Rebecca Thompson 

Rebecca’s career has focused on financial markets with senior roles at investment banks J.P. Morgan, Citigroup and Credit Suisse, and more recently in the capital advisory business at KPMG. Currently a director and co-founder of MarketMeter, an interactive market insights company, Rebecca’s goal is to promote corporate best practice and facilitate responsible investment practices. Outside the corporate arena, Rebecca uses her financial and analytical skills toward supporting the non-for-profit sector and in particular, the area of mental health. With personal experience of the toll mental illness takes on families and friends, Rebecca is passionate about making a difference in the lives of those affected. 

Marc Bryant 

With over 20 years in leadership roles within the mental health sector, Marc brings a wealth of knowledge to suicide prevention and mental health recovery. Marc has recently joined the global suicide prevention organisation, Living Works Australia as Director of Suicide Prevention and brings to ICLA his experience of suicide prevention program coordination. Marc has worked internationally for the National Health Service in the UK, was a senior UK print Journalist and is a member of the WHO International Association of Suicide Prevention (IASP); RUOK? amongst many others. Marc is passionate about community and sector collaboration and ensuring early suicide intervention is integrated with mental health and suicide prevention service provision.  

Our Employees

We’re in the people business! 

Our people are our greatest assets and we are committed to ongoing coaching and development of our staff. We’re actively look for people that align to our values as a critical for any role. 

Our Stories

Annika

“I enjoy working at ICLA because the work is always interesting and the people I work with are passionate about improving the lives of the people we support. I like knowing that the ultimate goal of the work I do is to benefit people. ICLA has provided me with good opportunities for career progression and to gain experience in different areas of the organisation.”

Annika’s career journey with ICLA commenced in 2018 as an Executive Assistant and Annika has held various roles such as Embark Project Manager and NDIS Navigator, Quality Advisor and most recently promoted to Quality and Engagement Manager.

Noura

“I joined ICLA as my professional background is in community mental health supporting vulnerable people and leading staff and teams. ICLA felt like the right fit for me along with the values they hold and mission they are striving to achieve in the mental health space. I enjoy working at ICLA as I’ve experienced a positive and supportive team culture across all levels of management which has allowed me to settle into the organisation and my role comfortably and confidently. I love my job, the people I work with and the opportunity to facilitate change and make a difference with staff and consumers”

Noura is one of our recent hires and works as our Site Leader, managing our Site Supervisors to help ensure that the people we support in our Supported Independent Living program are living their best life and are achieving their goals.