Virtual National Permanency Conference 2020  |  9.45am 12th to 3:45pm 13th October 2020

If you were unable to attend during the session time, or would like to watch again, please see the videos below from our Plenary Sessions.


THRIVE | Plenary Session 1

Join Lanai Scarr, respected journalist who spent part of her childhood in the care system, as she takes us through the launch of the THRIVE session of the National Permanency Conference.

Start the THRIVE journey with an official address from The Hon Michelle Landry MP; acknowledgment of country with Professor Paul Chandler; and official welcome from Adopt Change CEO Renee Carter.

To better understand the experiences of living in care, we will head to Beulah Ranch on the Central Coast of NSW, where we start our journey by hearing from Joel de Carteret, Emily Paul, Daniel 'D Minor' Harvey and Greg Floyd, President of Cowboys 4 Kids.


GROW | Plenary Session 4

Joe Hildebrand, host for the GROW session of our conference, focuses on how to best provide supports for children who have experienced challenging starts to life. Children need support for their education in school; and learning about their background and identity.  
Joe Hildebrand introduces us to a panel of experts to speak about these topics, including special presentations on:  

  • understanding anxiety in children by Michael Hawton;  
  • International Keynote Speaker Professor Richard Rose on Life Story Work; 
  • Jess Grace and Angela Bontea from CASPA speak about their education program for kids in care; and  
  • Robyn Smith from No FASD presents on understanding Foetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder.  

PERMANENCY | Plenary Session 7

Louise Ransome guides us through this session exploring stability and nurture in permanency – from speaking with Julie Hourigan-Ruse about early family support, through to considerations in permanency with Dr Amy Conley-Wright, integrated birth certificates with Fariba Gharakhani and a message from Minister Ward in NSW.


NATIONAL | Plenary Session 2

Join Media Host Angela Bishop as we hear from Queensland Minister Di Farmer and Shadow Minister Stephen Bennett.  
Angela will then introduce us to Ambassadors Jack Thompson and Brad Murphy as they share some lived experience insights into foster care and adoption.  
Then join Helen Baker (Director, Mum and Adoptee), as she facilitates a national Q&A session with government representatives to hear about the state of nation regarding our commitment to prioritising permanency for kids in care. Participants include DSS and NSW, QLD, SA, TAS, VIC, WA and NT governments.   


PLAY | Plenary Session 5

Join Host Daniella Boutros as we explore the importance of PLAY for children, which is also one of their rights. 
After hearing an address from Minister McGurk from Western Australia, we cross to worldwide renowned child welfare expert Dr Jane Aronson in New York; from a kitchen in Sydney with special guests including Dr Stacy Blythe and Kaisey Hayes zooming in from lockdown in Victoria. 
We also hear from Ambassador, Actor & Adoptee Zufi Emerson as she interviews Executive Producer and adoptive father Jason Herbison on the recent foster and permanent care storyline in Neighbours. We wrap things up with energetic Eric Bailey with his views on play and life experiences.


HOME | Plenary Session 8

Helen McCabe brings our national conversation HOME discussing what home and caring for children and young people means with Adopt Change Founder Deborra-lee Furness; hearing an address from Minister Jaensch in Tasmania; from Karleen Gribble on the important bond between infants and mothers and living in two families; along with the a chat between Sallianne Deckert and Phoebe Garland about lived experience, as we close out this very special event.


LEARN | Plenary Session 3

Melissa Doyle takes us from home to the front line, locally and abroad, in a session that explores ideas and insights, data and evidence for approaches to improving the child welfare sector and outcomes for kids. Melissa interviews:  

  • Kerry Chikarovski on the impact of domestic & family violence on children;  
  • Tamena Yarak on child protection practitioner learnings within a culturally and linguistically diverse framework; and 
  • Kelly-Anne Stewart and Kelly Walker from Department of Communities & Justice NSW talk about the importance of nurturing relationships between children and mothers during time in custody.  

We hear from International keynote speaker Dr Jessica Pryce as she speaks about strengthening families by ensuring racial equity;

Mark Galvin and Melissa Kaltner from EY and Claire Robbs from Life Without Barriers discuss their project to support data-informed placement decision making that better meets children’s needs;  

and we cross to South Australia to hear from Minister Rachel Sanderson on permanency updates. 


CULTURE | Plenary Session 6

Luke Carroll hosts the CULTURE session and explores the importance of connections with community and kin while speaking with guests including International keynote speaker Terry Cross and special appearance from singer/songwriter Shellie Morris. We hear from Damon Martin on considering International Kinship Care and from Emily Backhouse on her experiences with the care system.