We are delighted to be travelling to Australia and New Zealand in May 17 and look forward to the opportunities the trip gives us to discuss Talking Mats in these countries.
Firstly, we are pleased to have been invited over to Australia to be involved in the Agosci Communication Conference in Melbourne from the 18-21 May 2017. Agosci is an inclusive organisation that supports the participation of all people with complex communication needs. The theme of this conference asks participants to involve people with complex communication needs in all aspects of life to create a more welcoming society for people with communication support needs.
Lois and Nicki will be attending for Talking Mats and their involvement at the conference includes
- A one day pre – Agosci conference Foundation training for professionals in Melbourne
- 2 presentations – one on the potential use of Talking Mats in National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) and one on our current Keeping Safe project
- A poster on using Talking Mats in Eating and Drinking
- A stand which will run throughout the conference and where we can and meet and chat to delegates
In addition prior to the conference we are running
- A one day Foundation training in Sydney for Hammond Care
Plus we are really pleased to have linked with the Talk Link trust in New Zealand and will be visiting both Christchurch and Auckland and running foundation courses in both those places. New Zealand can be proud of their world record of electing Robert Martin in June 2016 to become the first person with an intellectual disability to serve on the UN committee dealing with people with disabilities. It feels a privilege going to a country which is providing such leadership in self-determination.
Train the trainers
We fly back to Melbourne and run a two day Accredited Training in St Kilda’s Melbourne for Australian and New Zealand professionals previously trained in the use of Talking Mats via our online course. This course will allow them to train others within their respective organisations. By providing our accredited training and ‘training the trainers’ we are facilitating the increased use of Talking Mats in Australia and New Zealand . This increases professional skills, improves the quality of the service being provided and most importantly improves the quality of life of the person with the communication difficulty by assisting them to express their views.
So a busy schedule but exciting and we hope to have some time off to relax and enjoy new sites and a different culture. There will be more blogs to follow……… Plus if anyone has any top tips for coping with long distance flights we would like you to share them!