International Women’s Day is a day to celebrate women’s achievements and promote gender equality, and as the Chief Operating Officer for Therapy Connect, I feel particularly proud today to be part of an organisation that’s making a real difference in so many women’s lives. Our team of over 70 highly qualified and experienced therapists, of which 97% are women, provides online therapy services to children, adolescents, and adults with various disabilities and chronic health conditions.
You only have to look at the team page of our website to see that the vast majority of our organisation, across all aspects, including clinicians, clinical leadership, support roles as well as non-clinical leadership, is made up of women…amazing women at that!
As an organisation delivering online therapy services including occupational therapy, speech therapy, psychology, physiotherapy and dietetics, our allied health practitioners work 100% remotely from home. Having the ability to work from home has become increasingly important to many women, especially those with caregiving responsibilities, which is the case for many of our team at Therapy Connect. It’s well documented that the reality is, women are more likely than men to take on unpaid caregiving roles, such as looking after kids, elderly parents, or family members with disabilities. So flexible work arrangements, like being able to work from home, and/or work part-time or sub-contract, allow many to balance these responsibilities while continuing to pursue meaningful careers.
I was speaking to one of our therapists this week, and she was telling me that working from home and on a part-time load gives her the flexibility to balance the work she loves – providing speech therapy to kids living with disability – with dropping her kids to school, soccer practice, and managing the renovations her family are doing on their home. As a mother of three small children, I understand the need for flexibility all too well.
It’s not only important to us at Therapy Connect that we’re providing flexible employment opportunities but also the opportunity to do meaningful, rewarding work. We really pride ourselves on providing the highest quality therapy services and to do this, we need our team to have access to training and professional development so they’re equipped with the knowledge, skills and tools needed to deliver the best client outcomes.
It’s heartening to see the positive feedback from my colleagues and clients about how Therapy Connect is making it easier for people to access and provide exceptional therapy services, no matter where they’re located around Australia. We have therapists working all over the country, including remote rural properties, and even one team member who has just returned from several months of travelling in a campervan with her family around Australia, jumping into Zoom therapy sessions from amazing locations. Our clients are located in equally diverse locations and they often tell us how they enjoy connecting with people in locations far and wide.
Having said that, many of our clients are also in metro areas, as I am. They choose online therapy because it saves them travel time and costs and also enables them to be matched with the best therapist for their needs, rather than just the one that is located nearby. Time is such a precious thing when you’re a parent, and anything that can help you with the daily juggle is a big win!
On this International Women’s Day, I am grateful to be part of an organisation that is truly empowering women to pursue their careers, balance their personal lives, and access the quality healthcare services they need. We acknowledge that we have more work to learn and more to do however I’m proud of where Therapy Connect is today and the impact we are making in the lives of many women. I am excited to be a part of its journey.
Natalie Malligan is the COO of Therapy Connect.