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Gretel Burgess

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Gretel  Burgess completed two years of a counselling degree before transferring to a Masters in Social Work (completed 2015). Gretel already has a BA in Communication – Theatre Media, and a Certificate in Cultural Theatre and Dance  from the Indonesian Art Institute of Pandang Panjang, West Sumatra. She has combined her background in the Arts and Health sectors to work with many different groups including, asylum seekers on Christmas Island, the Multicultural Council for Refugees, Darwin, and adults, children and young people with special needs in Canberra. Gretel has facilitated, over the past four years, a STEPS program for adults with stroke and acute brain injury through Queensland Health, and facilitated dance and drama programs for both ARC disability services and in the aged care sector in Cairns, Queensland. Gretel is currently working in many roles here in Canberra facilitating an arts-based program for the Messengers Program for disengaged teenagers at the Tuggeranong Arts Centre teaching dance for the Belconnen Arts Centre, including the Dance for Wellbeing program for all mobility levels, Dementia and Parkinson’s. Gretel is also on the board of Canberra Dance Theatre(CDT) and works as a guest teacher for the CDT GOLD over 55 year old dance class, and a teacher for the CDTeens, children and teenagers with additional needs. Gretel works in three schools as a social work counsellor with families and children for CatholicCare in both the north and south region of Canberra.

Mestre Roxinho



Edielson da Silva Miranda, known as Mestre Roxinho, was born in 1969 in Ilha de Veracruz, Bahia. After some years he moved to Salvador and was initiated into the world of Capoeira Angola in 1979 at the Academia de Capoeira Angola 1˚ de Maio with Mestre Virgilio. In 2002, Mestre Virgilio gave him the title of Mestre. In 2006, Mestre Roxinho immigrated to Australia and established his school, Escola de Capoeira Angola Mato Rasteiro (ECAMAR), in Sydney and became the first Master of Capoeira Angola from Bahia to have established a school of Capoeira Angola in Australia. Mestre Roxinho is also the founder of “Project Bantu”; a program which was established in 1998 in Brazil under the name of “Projeto Ere-Menino vem Gingar”. Project Bantu uses Capoeira Angola as a tool to engage marginalised youth and as a result to bring about positive social outcomes. The program is now run in Australia and the Asia-Pacific area.


Companion House


Companion House is a non government community based organisation. We work with adults and children who have sought safety in Australia from persecution, torture and war related trauma. We believe that people who have survived torture, trauma and human rights violations should have access to services that respect, empower and promote recovery.

Zsuzsi Soboslay

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Zsuzsi Soboslay has engaged in arts education, performance and CCD and intercultural work for over 25 years. She has worked in London and across 4 Australian states, with youth, very young children, members of the Forgotten and Stolen Generations, and adults of all abilities. High-level CACD specialist training includes with Action Learning Associates [UK], Participatory Arts [UK] and Counterpointsarts refugee arts [UK]. She has 3 major CACD projects in motion for 2019-22, including work with school- and pre-school-aged children, and members of refugee diasporas as co-creatives. 

A recipient of numerous awards and residencies, she received the Outstanding Excellence Award from the ACT Office of Multicultural Affairs [December 2018] in the area of Creative Services and Experiences for the Community through Art, Media or Culture for her extensive and ongoing cultural development work with the Canberra South Sudanese Community. 

Laurien Wells


Nia has changed my life and injected it with a massive dose of joy!  For me it was a natural progression to train to become a teacher of this amazing practice so I could share the many benefits with others!  Now a Blue Belt in Nia,  I receive so much joy from watching my students reconnect with their bodies and rediscover their own innate grace, strength and sensuality.

I am co-teaching with my friends, Jen and Kerryn, in three locations in Canberra.  Everybody is welcome to our classes. Nia is not about ‘getting the steps right’ it is about connecting to the joy of movement, moving in accordance with your body’s way and having fun.  Beginners are welcome to join in at any time.

Helena Maria da Costa


Helena Maria da Costa is a free-lance Portuguese dancer/choreographer and a Movement Social therapist. She has a degree in Political Sciences international Relations .She has collaborated with different artists such as Mary O’Donnell (Fulkerson), Marcus Grolle, Diane Torr, Nan Hoover, Joao Canijo and others. She has taught and performed in Portugal, Holland, Germany, England, Belgium and South Africa. Since 2001, Helena Maria has been working with the UN (United Nations org) and other international NGO’s as an Electoral Adviser and Assisting refugees and other persons of concern in Africa, Asia and the Middle East. As a humanitarian worker, she has also worked as a movement therapist in refugee camps and remote areas.  Within her approach to movement and touch, she combines somatic technics such as Feldenkrais, MBC (Body Mind Centering), Hands on, Improvisation, Release work and Contact Improvisation Helena Maria has directed a video project Think Low with two other directors. Recently she made a documentary film, ‘School of Hope’ in Islamabad, Pakistan

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