Five minutes with Carla Clarence, our Principal Social Innovator: Social Health

When Carla isn’t spending time with her family, she’s getting out in the world to facilitate meaningful conversions to drive social change. We sat down with her to discuss her life before TACSI, what energises her, and her dream holiday.


28 October 2022


The TACSI team

When you're not at work, what do you get up to?

I love spending time with my precious daughter, partner and our dog. We love eating food together and then planning the next meal, walking through Newtown with our dog, and enjoying impromptu singing performances from our daughter.

What change would you like to see in the world, and why?

That we continue to understand each other and be willing to have ongoing conversation to try and work stuff out.

What were you doing before working at TACSI?

I worked for SYC – a non-for-profit that provides a wide range of services to support disadvantaged young people – for 14 years. It was there I learnt so much from people navigating hard systems in hard times. These people were my greatest teachers.

Who inspires you, and why?

I really like the Hungarian-Canadian physician and author Gabor Mate. I love how he believes that compassion is always possible.

Looking back at your career, what’s been the highlight?

Working with SYC and TACSI to explore the social innovation that now is the Sticking Together Project.

What are you reading/watching/listening to at the moment?

The Future of Hope podcast, which I love because it speaks to our humanity, the stuff all of us seem to be grappling with and offers up ways to strengthen HOPE in many ways.

When you were a kid, what did you want to be when you 'grew up'?

A psychologist.

What's a book, film or resource that you would recommend to someone interested in social impact?

Jonathan Livingston Seagull by Richard Bach. I read this book when I was 15 after it was recommended by someone I was working with in my first job. I have never been a very good reader but I could not put this book down. Through a seagull I learnt about bravery, pushing through and finding understanding. I own a copy of it and often flick through it for inspiration.

What's something on your bucket list?

Drive right around Australia. I think this country is magnificent but I have not seen enough of it. I would love to explore Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander story lines as I travel through Country.

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