Cherie Rowett is a registered occupational therapist based in Adelaide in South Australia. She was drawn to the occupational therapy profession because it considers human health and wellbeing in such a wholistic way, and because she observed the value of occupational therapy in action with her sister who was apraxic and also having learning difficulties whilst growing up.
Cherie has much professional experience in working with adults living with disability – particularly following acquired brain injury. For many years she was employed in SAHealth inpatient and community-based Brain Injury Rehabilitation units. Cherie then established an occupational therapy consultancy as a sole trader – delivering services on-site in clients’ homes and local communities, often connecting with allies and caregivers in the process. In recent years this has included providing services for people with plan-managed and self-managed NDIS arrangements.
During the 1990s Cherie completed a masters-by-research degree with the renowned occupational scientist Ann Wilcock as her supervisor. Then, for almost two decades Cherie became a lecturer and topic coordinator – teaching on a part-time basis at Flinders University, within the Clinical Rehabilitation and Occupational Therapy courses there.
Cherie has lifelong insights into the role of family caregiver and ally, having grown up with a younger sister with a congenital cognitive disability, and thus has empathy for the many Australians who have a caregiving role to fit into the mix of their busy lives – on a full-time or part-time basis – for someone in their immediate or extended family. And whilst people often don’t want to be defined by the carer role it is in fact an influential role that can benefit from reflection, attention, learning and connectedness, which is why it has a special focus here at Heart Choice Enterprises.