Our Team

BGKLLEN (or Bayside Glen Eira Kingston Local Learning & Employment Network) is helping young people stay engaged or reengage with schooling.

We do this by facilitating partnerships that help build the capacity of young people to attend education, build positive relationships with educators and develop the skills they will require to move on successfully to the next stage of their life. We are currently focusing on engagement in learning and school retention as well as professional development for staff and educators working with young people.

At BGKLLEN we are receptive and ready to listen and act. We are passionate, tenacious and care deeply about young people. We are fun to be around as we love what we do!

We are also very committed to Child Safety. To read our Statement of Commitment to Child Safety, click here.

Brendan O’Connell

Brendan O’Connell is our Executive Officer and brings with him a history of facilitation, vocational education and training, and partnership brokering. His work history includes LLENs, Aboriginal Community Controlled Health, mental health and the Victorian Government. Brendan has a varied education spanning from an apprenticeship to post graduate studies in Innovation in Education & Training.

Brendan is passionate about equality and working with young people which makes him a fantastic fit at BGKLLEN. Brendan wants to be innovative in response to challenges that face our local young people and share our findings with the rest of the world.

Cazzie Coyle

Cazzie is the SWL Project Officer and joined BGKLLEN in 2019. Cazzie always had a love for children so trained as a primary teacher, achieving a Double Degree; Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Teaching. Throughout her time teaching and interacting with young people, Cazzie developed a strong passion for helping young people with their mental wellbeing. During her time teaching, Cazzie furthered her passion and completed her Masters in Student Wellbeing. Using her educational background, passion and drive to help students and their mental wellbeing, Cazzie has begun facilitating school sessions around Managing Stress and Anxiety. After working with the Junior levels at one local school, Cazzie is expanding the number of schools taking part in these school sessions. Cazzie looks forward to reaching as many students she can, helping them strengthen their mental health.

Laura Vandersluys

As the Structured Workplace Learning (SWL) Coordinator, Laura facilitates partnerships between schools and employers to create opportunities for students to gain on-the-job experiences and current industry skills. Laura holds a Bachelor of Health Science and has gained experience working with the community through voluntary work.
Laura represented young people in her community as deputy chair of the first Victoria Youth Congress and in 2018 was also awarded Kingston’s Young Citizen of the Year. Currently, Laura sits on the state-wide network advisory group for SWL and is secretary for the Bayside Careers Group. Laura is passionate about ensuring all young people transition successfully to employment.

Kathy Woods

Kathy is the glue that keeps the office together, holding the position of Business & Operations Manager at the BGKLLEN. Kathy has extensive experience in management, financial management, administration and project management in both the health and education sectors. Kathy holds a Diploma in Business Administration as well as a Certificate IV in Financial Services (Bookkeeping). Kathy enjoys the diversity of her role at the BGKLLEN, along with working with the rest of the team to achieve organisational and regional partnership success.