Founder / President

Talula holds a degree in Media and Communications and has worked for various successful companies in the UK and Australia in coordination roles. The Alithia journey began when she worked for the Synectics Education Initiative, a UK charity founded by her grandfather, Vincent Nolan, which introduced innovative problem-solving tools and positive communication techniques into the education system with data collected by the Open University. These tools, which were originally developed for use in the business world, create a unique, trusting environment where collaboration and creative thinking flourishes. 

Talula trained under her mother, Ruth Nolan, who is a qualified Synectics Communication Facilitator and holds a Masters in Arts Therapy. Talula runs workshops equipping parents, educators and children with these holistic, yet scientific, practical tools for creating a supportive environment in which intentions are made clear and mis-communications are recognised and resolved immediately.

Talula has spent many years following the latest research in brain development, learning and initiatives within the education system world-wide, and assessing which approaches work and why. Talula witnessed an increase in youths at risk, children being diagnosed with autism, ADHD, behavioural / learning difficulties and children suffering from anxiety and depression. She noticed that in her rural, disadvantaged area, there is a high rate of children falling through the cracks, dropping out of school, and turning to substance abuse at ages as young as 12.  Talula founded Alithia in 2016 and has been successfully directing the Learning Centre, ensuring it is an inclusive service with a reputation of high stature in the community. 

Karen Caves_square_web copy


Vice President / Partnerships

Karen has a background in environmental studies, with a degree in Applied Science (Natural Systems and Wildlife Management) and works for the State Government in the Office of Environment and Heritage. Karen has practiced the deeper aspects of yoga for more than 20 years and runs Yoga classes for both adults and children. Karen resonates deeply with some of the new approaches to child-development including positive psychology, nature based learning and building healthy connections. Karen became a co-founder of Alithia in 2016 and has since worked closely with council, academics and funding bodies on logistics, acquittals and reports.

Cat Walsh_square_web



Cat has a Degree in Speech Pathology and a Bachelor of Nursing. Cat currently works at Southern Cross University teaching anatomy and physiology. Cat became a co-founder of Alithia in 2016 and has since worked as the secretary for the charity (now a PBI), ensuring compliance with the ACNC and Fair Trading.


Financial Officer

Lisa has a degree in theology from CSU, and has specialised training and experience in helping kids reflect on the stories, images and practices that are meaningful to them, helping them connect with their own sense of wonder and purpose. Lisa also studied mathematics and science at ANU and brings these skills to Alithia.

Lisa's work in the church, as an Anglican priest, has given her a strong understanding of the unique needs of non-profit community groups. Lisa's experience includes careful financial stewardship, successfully leading teams of volunteers and paid employees, and working to create policies and practices that align with the vision and values of the organisation. Lisa is experienced with creating financial budgets, tables, predictions, profit and loss statements, and doing general book-keeping.


Amy Denshire_web_bw


Website Coordination

Amy holds a degree in Industrial Design, Diploma of Education and has commenced a Masters in Regional Community Development. She works for the Centre of Ecological Learning and as a freelance marketer across graphic and web platforms. Amy has vast experience seeding successful community events and projects including The View Factory (Newcastle), the Bellingen Energy Festival, Bellofoodbox and the Northbank Community Garden. Amy has yearned to make a positive difference to the world for as long as she can remember. This, paired with her creativity, is what led her to become an Industrial Designer. Industrial designers solve complex problems in the form of new products and services. Amy lives on a budding permaculture farm and shares this knowledge with the children in our community.

Melissa Seelenmeyer_square_web


Marketing & IT Advisor

Melissa is a  marketing consultant (and property strategist) with over 15 years experience in advertising and marketing. Working within award winning marketing agencies in Sydney and the Sunshine Coast, as well as running her own marketing and website agency, Melissa has provided marketing for well known brands such as Fox 8, Channel 10, Nike and Coca Cola, as well as small businesses within the tourism, hospitality, health services and real estate sectors across Australia. Founder of PropertyGen, Melissa generates profit solutions for vendors through low cost value-add property development strategies – helping vendors and agents achieve more for their property sale. PropertyGen also provides digital marketing packages and cinematic drone imagery for real estate.

After undertaking a Bachelor of Arts in Communication, Melissa graduated in 1999  and was appointed Production Manager for international design agency Attik in Sydney. Managing a creative suite of designers and crew, Melissa coordinated the production of television commercials, music videos and visual identities for national and international clients.

She has worked as a freelance production and event manager, and also as personal assistant to George Negus before moving to the Sunshine Coast in 2005. Melissa has managed the advertising requirements for a variety of clients, within some of the top creative agencies on the Sunshine Coast.

Antje Firla_square_web


Social Media

Antje has a Masters in Health and Exercise Science and Sport Psychology. She is an experienced Life Coach and Exercise Physiologist. Her work combines all aspects of health in a holistic way – Body, Mind and Soul. As a mother of three, she runs her own business and knows about the importance of life skills rather than the curriculum-based skills that are mostly focussed on in the common schooling system. Born in Germany, her interests have been drawn to the successful modern schooling systems that have been established in the last years in Scandinavia and pioneering all around the world. Antje is determined to fully support Alithia's vision for our community and beyond.

About Us

Alithia is learning space for collaborative innovation, holistic development and a range of hands-on activities designed for children aged 6 to 12 in Valla, NSW.

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You don't have to live on the Mid North Coast to get involved with Alithia. If you love what we're about, get involved!

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