Vanessa Turnbull-Roberts is a proud Bundjalung Widubul-Wiabul Woman who is passionate about education, children, and young people. Vanessa continues to empower First Nations voices using education, advocacy. Vanessa is a survivor of statutory Out-of-Home Care and continues to drive national discourse in this area. Vanessa is a advocate for Human Rights, storyteller, writer and has completed a Bachelor of Law and Bachelor of Social work at the University of New South Wales, along with First Class honours.
Vanessa has had numerous experiences throughout the fields of children and young people and has dedicated most of her life towards the movement and freedom for justice, empowering First Nations self-determination and ensuring Children’s voices are heard and represented. Vanessa’s area of expertise is working and understanding the implications of complex and intergenerational trauma and the wellbeing for the lives of First Nations children and advocacy for change at both grassroots and the institutional level. Vanessa’s critical lens into the criminal justice and child protection system is pivotal to ensuring self-determination and healing for First Nations Lives. Vanessa took out the Australian Human Rights medal in 2019 which her acceptance speech saw global recognition and responses. Vanessa is a researcher at the University of Technology where her research is centred around decolonising child protection in the lives of First Nations people and is currently writing her first Book titled “ Long Yarn Short: We are still here”-for the children that didn’t get to come home, those yet to come home and the ones who saw neither.