The SAI Home and Community Care team is led by two experienced and dedicated nurses who have over four decades of experience in healthcare and our support workers are managed by a core executive team with a vast array of professional skills and experience in Aged and Disability Care
Upali DeSilvaChief Executive Officer
Rita GaleaHR Coordinator & Staff Development Coordinator
Renee GilliganCare Manager
Rochelle WilkieCare Manager
Janice GrayRostering Officer
Ronel PhillipsRostering Officer
Michelle BalaamFinance Accounts Office
Preksha ZalavadiaIT Support Specialist
SAI Home & Community Care
Upali is a Registered Nurse, Division 1, with extensive experience in Residential and Community Health. Since completing his Psychiatric Nursing in 1973, Upali has been involved in the establishment of the first Community Mental Health and Crisis Teams in Victoria.
Upali’s career highlights include working as the Acting Principle Nurse for the Health Department and commissioning three new Psychiatric Hospitals and one community centre. In consolidating his management experience, Upali has worked as Program Manager at Kingston Centre and as Director of Nursing, and Owner, operator at Chelsea Manor & Bentleigh Manor Aged Care Facilities.
Together, with his wife Nina, Upali has built and operated two successful Residential Aged Care facilities, winning numerous awards for excellence in care provided to clients, along with a Ministers award for staff training and education. Upali is committed to research and innovation in all aspects of care and treatment.
Upali has travelled widely to examine, and view first hand, the operation of health services in the United States, the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Israel, Sweden, China and South Korea. Upali is also a member of the International Psychogeriatric Association. A keen hiker, Upali has succeeded in the challenges of climbing to Mount Everest Base Camp and completing the Kokoda Trail.
His passion is to enhance the lives of people who are aging and people living with disabilities. Upali strongly believes in providing information to clients, empowering them to choose the assistance they require, and to work together with them to ensure they achieve their individual goals.
Upali’s research interests include Assistive Technology for Elderly and Disabled, & Slow Stream Rehabilitation and Non-Pharmacological and Psychosocial Interventions for People with Dementia.
In establishing SAI Home and Community Care, Upali hopes to enrich the care experience for clients, and their families, by providing dedicated care and working in partnership with them, not only to maintain a quality lifestyle and independence within their own home, but to serve them with respect and dignity.
Nina is a Director and Quality Manager at SAI Home and Community Care
In her role as Director and Quality Manager, Nina works alongside of the team to ensure the utmost level of quality is delivered by SAI Home and Community Care. She also oversees the training and induction undertaken by our team of carers to ensure that our clients receive the best possible care available.
Nina completed her Psychiatric Nursing in 1971, followed by Mental Retardation nursing in 1973 and later completed her General Nurse training in 1985. She worked for several years as a Psychiatric Mental Health Community Nurse and established a rehabilitation unit in North Side Clinic- Sydney. She was offered and accepted a position as a Director of Nursing of a Drug and Alcohol Hospital in Melbourne for 2 years and was successful in guiding the hospital through its very first accreditation process.
In 1990, Nina decided to become self-employed and thus embarked in her very challenging career of Aged Care. She and her husband Upali, owned and operated a 50 bed Supportive Residential Service; caring for frail aged and people with psychiatric disabilities. Together they worked very hard to build this facility to become the flagship of a “pensioner only” accommodation. Later they built a 45 bed hostel/ low care facility known as Bentleigh Manor. This was later followed by a bed low and high care facility known as Chelsea Manor. Nina was very much a “hands on operator “and is highly respected and regarded by all those who worked with her.
After 22 years of working in Aged Care, Nina and her husband Upali, took a well-earned break for two years and then established SAI Home and Community Care. Nina has always been passionate about teaching and educating caring, knowledgeable carers. She believes in empowering her staff and offering ongoing support in a nurturing environment.
Nina looks forward to imparting all her knowledge and experience through SAI Home and Community Care as well as assisting staff to confidently become the workforce of tomorrow.
Kerryn King is the Manager at SAI Home and Community Care.
Kerryn has extensive experience in the management role by being part of a successful family owned business in the leisure industry. Kerryn believes that this experience has shaped and moulded her appreciation of a ‘good life’ and to be an effective manager.
Kerryn has been very active in the cycling fraternity alternating between road and mountain loving the outdoors in all facets.
Kerryn says, “My passion for living the best life has helped me transition into the world of care easily. With a solid background in finance I have been fortunate to work across many industries. Working for SAI Home and Community Care has been an absolute highlight. The amazing team bond we share and the wonderful support we provide enriches my everyday world that I am happy and very proud to share.”
Rita Galea is a Human Resource Coordinator and Staff Development Coordinator at SAI Home and Community Care.
Rita is responsible for hiring suitable carers, conducting their induction and overseeing their education to prepare them to provide a service to our clients. Rita plays an imperative role in implementing all Human Resource management activities for our carers and manages our education record information system.
Rita has a strong background in aged care and has worked closely with Nina and Upali for many years as a Team Leader in a memory support unit in an aged care facility.
Rita holds a Division 2 Enrolled Nursing Registration and is a qualified trainer and assessor.
Rita says, “I am looking forward to continuing the exciting expansion of SAI Home and Community Care which ensures that the elderly and people with disabilities are cared for in a manner that is respectful and nurturing. I am also keen to monitor the continued growth of the education opportunities available to our carers. Great pride is taken to ensure that our workers are trained to the highest level possible”
Renee Gilligan is a Care Manager at SAI Home and Community Care.
Renee is responsible for the initial meeting with potential clients, assist all new clients with the development and management of their care plans, support plans and individual needs.
Renee has a diverse and interesting background across numerous fields and has travelled widely, which landed her experience with several appointments in administration and working in an aged care facility.
Renee has gained hands on experience in home and community care by working as a carer for our company since our establishment.
Renee holds a Cert III in Aged Care and is a happy, approachable and friendly Care Manager who is greatly respected by our clients and staff alike.
Renee says, “I am thrilled to be part of a team that is so strongly committed to contributing to the local community in a way that successfully allows the elderly and people with disability to maintain their independence and remain in their own home.”
Rochelle Wilkie is a Care Manager at SAI Home and Community Care.
Rochelle is responsible for the initial meeting with potential clients, assist all new clients with the development and management of their care plans, support plans and individual needs.
Rochelle has worked closely in the Aged Care field for a number of years. First working as a PCA in the community early in her career, then in an Aged Care residential setting.
Rochelle is an enrolled Nurse.
Rochelle says, “My grandmother and my mother both worked as nurses which inspired me to enter this field too. Therefore, my care for people comes from early inspiration from my family.
I feel an enormous amount of gratitude working with SAI Home and Community Care who genuinely care for its clients and promotes independence for them.”
Janice Gray is the Rostering Office at SAI Home and Community Care.
Janice is responsible for rostering staff members and finding the most suitable staff for our clients.
Janice has a very interesting career history of being part of video industry, store manager, sales and administration and then as a carer.
Janice joined SAI Home and Community Care as a home support worker in 2017 and later joined our rostering team in 2018.
Janice holds a Certificate III in Aged Care.
Janice says, “I joined SAI Home and Community Care in December 2017 for in home support, continuing with what I’m passionate about. When an opportunity of full-time position arose within head office; the heart and soul of this caring organisation, I jumped at the opportunity. I am now the Scheduling & Rostering Officer. I am responsible for rostering, providing the best suited carers to each of our clients and to meet their needs, to ensure provision of client care and family support, being the first point of contact for clients, carers, case managers and families. I am proud to be part of such a warm, caring organisation”
Ronel is the Rostering Officer at SAI Home and Community Care.
Ronel has worked in administration for a carpet company for many years; alongside which Ronel worked as a Personal Carer with SAI since our establishment.
Ronel’s serving attitude has allowed her to continue her work as a carer for our clients and secure a rostering position when it became available.
“Joining SAI Home and Community Care as a Rostering Officer was a big decision in my life. The culture that we share here at SAI’s office is genuine and based on respect, love and dignity for our clients and staff members. I feel privileged to be part of this team”
Michelle Balaam is our Finance Officer.
Michelle has over 20 years of experience in the Finance Industry and had her own Bookkeeping business. Moreover, Michelle is a carer for her mother.
Michelle holds a Certificate IV in Bookkeeping and aspires to keep abreast with her knowledge in bookkeeping.
Michelle Says, “I enjoy challenges and find this job allows me to explore new areas and learn new systems. I enjoy working with such a great and caring team. I am very excited to part of SAI Home and Community Care’s team and I look forward to my upcoming challenges”
Jo Robinson is the Administration Officer at SAI Home and Community Care.
Jo has a background in banking, finance and administration.
Jo is responsible for greeting and assisting all our visitors, answering incoming calls, updating forms regularly, updating all policies and procedures and keep our office in perfect running order.
Jo is also responsible for the management of all staff and client files.
Jo is highly organised and more than capable of undertaking any task which makes her an asset to our team.
Jo says, “I am looking forward to the continued growth of SAI Home and Community Care”
Leanne King is the Administration Officer at SAI Home and Community Care.
Leanne has a background in customer service working across many successful organisations and then she joined us initially as a Personal Carer in 2013 and later in Administration department in 2018.
Leanne holds a Cert III in Aged Care.
Leanne says, “Having the knowledge from working with SAI’s clients helps with my ability to understand and assist our clients with their phone enquiries and needs. I am excited about the future expansion of SAI Home and Community Care”.
Preksha is an IT Support Specialist at SAI Home and Community Care.
Preksha is responsible for creating, updating and managing our website, marketing materials, newsletters and promotions. Preksha ensures that our IT infrastructure is secure and quintessential steps are taken to keep us going. Preksha is also responsible for documenting our Information Technology policies and adopt latest Digital Marketing strategies.
Preksha has a background in customer service and IT with her various roles in different countries.
Preksha holds a Masters in IT Professionals and a Bachelors in Computer Engineering degree.
Preksha says, “I am very fortunate to be part of SAI Home and Community Care. Although home care is not my expertise, I have learned a lot about home care and elderly care from this amazing team at SAI. One of the most conspicuous aspect of SAI team is our culture and aim of helping people.”