Our Team

Neighbourhood Connect is run by a skilled and experienced voluntary Board, united by their passion for creating happier and more connected neighbourhoods, and supported by a talented and diverse Project Team. Our team are enthusiastic, creative contributors from all over Australia.



President Irene Opper

Irene Opper BA MSWAP is the National Manager of Neighbourhood Connect and a Connector for the Green Knoll Neighbours Group, in Melbourne. Irene is passionate about making a difference and has done so over the last 30 years as a consultant to the not for profit sector and government (Oppertunity Consulting), project manager, change manager, manager of social and multicultural services, systems advocate, capacity builder, trainer, community development worker, researcher and mediator. She has managed several services and projects. Irene is passionate about re-creating the norm of connected neighbourhoods across Australia. Email:Irene@neighbourhoodconnect.org.au


Klaus Veil Vice President

Klaus Veil FACHI FHL7 has been involved in the leadership of professional organisations and not-for profits for over 25 years and is past Treasurer of not for profit organisations with budgets of ~$140k/year. He is passionate about and has significantly contributed to the fields of professionalism, healthcare interoperability and biomedical engineering. Since 2015 Klaus has been a leader of the Australian Council of Professions; he now serves as its President.  He is a Fellow of the Australasian College of Health Informatics as well as HL7 International and a Member of Australian Institute of Company Directors.


Maureen Maher BSc (Health Promotion) Grad Cert Social Impact is the WA Coordinator for Neighbourhood Connect and is a Connector for the Hilton Neighbours Group, in Perth. She is a dynamic community professional with 30+ years experience in building strong relationships and innovative programs across the health, community and environment sectors. As a facilitator, community engagement and communications practitioner, she works to connect people, organisations and government, to build social and environmental capital. She is interested in exploring how creative social enterprises can support positive outcomes for people and address social and environmental problems in the process. Email Maureen@neighbourhoodconnect.org.au


Joanne Hargreaves Treasurer

Joanne Hargreaves B.Bus (Acc) has been, and continues to be, a grassroot campaigner with local organisations. Involvement includes playgroups, kinders, school board treasurer, and currently, as an active member of a Geelong Women’s Network.  Joanne has worked as an accountant for private companies, as a Technical Officer with the Australian Taxation Office and is the mother of four boys. She gained post graduate Qualifications in Gerontology and has worked with the Aged and CALD groups. Joanne strongly believes in community connection, and the positive effect it has on mental and physical health


Bec Feldman Board Member

Bec Feldman BA is the Organisational Development Manager for Neighbourhood Connect and Connector for the Bayswater Neighbours Group. She has worked in disability advocacy for 12 years, including with young people and people with multiple and complex disabilities. Her roles have included areas such as individual and systemic advocacy, case management, peer group facilitation, community development, and work across a range of projects such as housing, access to live music, short-film and volunteering as well as staff and customer training. She has worked across the advocacy and disability service provision and local government sectors. She is currently part of Leadership Victoria’s 2018 disability leadership program. Email Bec@NeighbourhoodConnect.org.au

Team Members

We value our talented and committed group of volunteers who share their skills and experience to help expand the Neighbourhood Connect movement.