About the Learning & Networking Group for Social Workers & Support Workers

By becoming part of LANSAS, our FASD Learning and Networking group for Social Workers and Support Workers, you'll gain access to webinars every two months, with experts discussing specific issues around FASD and the social sector.

Recent research from an University of Auckland survey as well as feedback from our membership has shown a strong requirement to provide learning opportunities and support to Aotearoa’s social sector professionals who are working with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) clients. 

Click here to download an interactive pānui / flyer about the group.

We'd love it if you could please help us spread the word and share this with your colleagues!

Click here to jump to our registration form or read on for more about the group.

FASD in Social Work

The Ministry of Health has conservatively estimated that between 3-5% of the population each year is born with FASD in Aotearoa. This makes FASD the most common neurodisability in the world – more common than autism, Down syndrome and cerebral palsy combined.

You can find out more about why increased FASD knowledge is so important in your sectors by watching a video by NZ presenters Professor Anita Gibbs, Dr Joanna Chu, and one of our own group facilitators, Karleen Dove. Click here to watch ‘Social Work Perspectives on FASD’. 

What is the group about?

The purpose of the FASD Learning and Networking Group for Social Workers and Support Workers (LANSAS) is to provide you with knowledge about FASD best practice in your sector, as well as to provide an opportunity to learn from each other, and to connect and network to share knowledge and experience.

Membership in the group provides you with ongoing learning opportunities around a theme/topic essential to understanding FASD or to managing the symptoms of FASD. It's not about working harder, but ‘differently’.

Membership will also enable the natural development of informal supports with other colleagues where experiences and knowledge can be shared, and issues arising with your FASD clients can be discussed and brainstormed.


To become a member of this group you must be a member of FASD-CAN CAN (if you're not already a member, join here – it's free and very quick, with no obligation), and either:

  • be currently working in the social work or support work sectors in some capacity.
  • be in training to join these sectors.
  • have previously been working in these sectors.

PLEASE NOTE: FASD-CAN has kanohi ki te kanohi / face to face support groups for caregivers and whānau here, and we also have a new learning and networking group for educators. Those outside of the social and support worker sectors could consider enrolling for membership in these groups.

If you do not meet the criteria for our current groups but want the same learning and networking opportunities, let us know by contacting Kim Milne at: [email protected]

Membership in the group is on a personal/individual basis, and you will also be required to comply with FASD-CAN’s privacy policy and confidentiality requirements. This means the ZOOM links you are sent cannot be shared with others outside of the membership of the FASD LANSAS group. 

Our Facilitators

FASD-CAN is so lucky to have the knowledge and support of three professionals working in your sector to co-facilitate this group. They’ll be the ones listening to what you want from membership, developing some training on specific FASD topics, and facilitating the online meetings.

Nikki Geeson

Kia ora koutou. Ko Nikki Geeson ahau. I live in Doubtless Bay in the Far North. I am a registered psychologist primarily working with children, adolescents, and parents/caregivers across Northland. I complete assessments and provide therapy, including group therapy, in my current role. I have several postgraduate qualifications in psychology, and I am currently completing a Postgraduate Certificate in Infant, Child, and Adolescent Mental Health at the University of Auckland. I spent 17 years working in various roles for the New Zealand Police before retraining as a psychologist.          

I am experienced at facilitating groups and have a strong professional interest in FASD. I have volunteered to be a co-facilitator for the online learning and networking group as I’d like to help increase knowledge of FASD across the social services sector, and learn from other group members.

Contact: [email protected]  |  Mobile: 022 010 4373

Luci Kent

Ko Otaniwainuku te maunga, ko Tauranga te moana, ko Waimapu te awa, ko Kent te hapu, noo Oropi ahau, ko Dickie tooku whanau, ko Lucinda tooku ingoa.

Kia ora taatou. I am a registered social worker, currently practicing in the residential care arena where unfortunately our FASD rangatahi are over-represented and I believe, under-supported. Since coming into this arena I have sought out information and research in the FASD space to shape my own best practice, although I acknowledge there is always more to learn. So I invite you on this journey alongside myself and my co-facilitators to add to, and take from, the learnings available to us!

Contact: [email protected] |  Mobile: 027 318 2390

Rose Hawkins

Rose works to create awareness of FASD and other disabilities and to support people living with these differences and those around them to live their best lives. Rose has created FASD resources and has presented about the disorder at many workshops, forums and conferences, both in Aotearoa and internationally, promoting simple ways to help understand and respond to FASD. Rose is a Regional Disability Advisor for the Ministry for Children in Aotearoa New Zealand.

Contact: [email protected]  |  Mobile: 029 650 0505

When and how?

The FASD LANSAS group will meet online on every second month on the last Tuesday from 4pm-5pm.


To register for membership in the FASD LANSAS group please check your eligibility and fill in the form below.

You can join us at any time throughout the year. 

Once you've hit submit, you'll receive an email confirming your registration with dates for 2024 and the Zoom link which you'll use for each meeting. 

Members can cancel their membership at any time by emailing [email protected]

Any questions?

If you have any questions or want to know more, please contact one of our FASD Learning and Networking group facilitators via their email address given above.

Please note: if you can't see the form below, you will need to join us as a member first. If you think you should have access to this form, but don’t – please contact us.