Meet Megan Vane, Counsellor

“While the work I do is incredibly rewarding, it’s a bittersweet career; in an ideal world I shouldn’t have a job.”  

Megan joined Windermere in November 2022 bringing with her a vibrant portfolio of career experiences and qualifications that have led her down the path of counselling.

Although Megan was set to join the federal police after completing her Police Studies her desire to nurture her enquiring mind and her interest in human services changed the course of her career. It was her role as Senior Administrator in the Faculty of Arts at Monash University that fuelled her interest in counselling.

“I wore many hats as grievance advisor, academic progress advisor and selections officer. Through my interactions with many students, I saw the real struggle with transitioning from high school to adult life and navigating relationships and connections. It started to feed my interest in the field,” says Megan.

Her experiences at Monash propelled Megan to complete a Graduate Diploma in Psychology and a Master of Counselling before setting off on a new career path working in the areas of complex sexual assault and family violence support services.

After six years of gaining experience, Megan brings her expertise to Windermere as a trauma counsellor to address problematic sexual behaviour, sexualised behaviour in children, and trauma from family violence and sexual assault.

“I see my role as a great honour. Counsellors are often the first person to hear someone’s story and it’s a privilege to be able to walk alongside them on their journey,” she says.

Being able to play a part in effecting change in another person’s life through organic interactions and conversations is something Megan finds deeply rewarding.

“I can’t change the past for them, but I can help rewrite their future so that they no longer feel like there’s a shadow cast over them,” says Megan.

Her work involves deciphering complex human behaviour and Megan embraces the many challenges that come with it.

“Every day is different, which means there’s no room for complacency. I deal with a variety of personalities and experiences and that challenges my creativity to work out solutions,” says Megan.

Since the COVID pandemic, these challenges have escalated and the need for Counselling programs has never been greater.

“It’s a very real challenge that has arisen out of COVID. I think it’s vital that counselling programs like Windermere’s gain traction in the community because there are so many people out there who are struggling,” she says.

While the stigma around mental health is gradually reducing as more and more people reach out for help, counselling programs are needed now more than ever to nurture help seeking behaviours in the generations to come.

To stay abreast of the ever-changing and growing landscape of mental health, Megan also looks for ways to upskill and is currently completing her Master of Mental Health.

“Over the years, there has been a lot of emphasis on the Cognitive Behavioural Therapy approach, but now different modalities are coming to light and as a counsellor, I can’t have preconceived ideas about those I support. I need to have enough tools to be able to go in the directions that’s needed,” says Megan.

While tackling complex problems and experiences is a constant learning process, she draws strength and motivation from her team and workplace culture.

“The beauty of our team is that we all have different lived experiences and knowledge, which allows us to learn from each other. Being part of a supportive team is fantastic and the flexible ways of working encourage loyalty and the drive to give 110 percent,” says Megan of working at Windermere.

The Windermere counselling program is a brief intervention program offering six sessions at a time for those who are eligible for support through referral or self-referral. The government-funded program is a free and confidential service and individuals who have completed the six sessions can re-refer into the program following a two-month lapse.

“The Counselling program provides a platform for individuals to share their worries and to be heard and doesn’t require them to do anything else. While the work I do is incredibly rewarding, it’s a bittersweet career; in an ideal world I shouldn’t have a job,” adds Megan.   

For more information visit Windermere’s Counselling program or call 1300 946 337