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Ministerial Opening to Education Outdoors Conference!
The Minister of Tourism, Sport and Recreation, Hon John Eren, will be opening the conference with a key speech to share some exciting upcoming developments for the outdoor sector on Friday morning.

Engaging Women and Girls with the Outdoors
Bridie O'Donnell was appointed as the Head of the Office for Women in Sport and Recreation Victoria. Her appointment was a newly created position and an Australian first! Bridie has agreed to share some exciting new initiatives the Department will be funding to get more women and girls active in the outdoors.

The Education Outdoor Conference is a major annual event that provides professional learning for teachers, educators and students within the Outdoor Education sector.

Outdoors Victoria, supported by Victoria University are very pleased to announce that the Education Outdoors 2018 Conference will be held on:

Friday 25 May – Saturday 26 May 2018

at Victoria University, Footscray Park Campus, Melbourne 

In 2018 our Education Outdoors Conference will focuss on future career pathways for everyone in the outdoors sector.

At a time when care for the environment is once again coming to the fore within the social consciousness, the need to reconnect with nature and natural spaces is becoming holistically important.

Whilst acknowledging the many benefits of technology, the impact of society’s increased engagement with it has resulted in our disengagement from the natural world, causing negative effects on our general mental and physical wellbeing.

People with the skills to connect others back to nature, in all sorts of meaningful ways, are increasingly becoming leaders and teachers of great value.

The Education Outdoors 2018 Conference: ‘Your Future in the Outdoors’ will be focussing on future careers and pathways such as career and workforce development; health & active living in the outdoors, skills & practical development, teaching & learning, human-nature, adventure safety & risk, early years & bush kinders, inclusion, outdoor career & career development, and sport science & the outdoors. The program will explore and inspire discussion about sustainable professional careers for our community and the positive impacts we can have across society.

Visit our conference homepage for the latest updates about this event.


Representing the Outdoors Community of Victoria, Outdoors Victoria (OV) is the peak body for all Outdoor activities in Victoria. We exist to support the Outdoors Community, to advocate the benefits of outdoor activity to the broader community. Our purpose is to build a valued and sustainable outdoor sector for the benefit of the community and natural environment by enhancing, connecting, and advocating on behalf of outdoor education, outdoor recreation, outdoor therapy and nature based tourism.


By now you have probably noticed a few changes to your registration experience. This isn’t Eventbrite, this is a new system called iVvy and is kindly being managed by the Event Services staff at Victoria University.

When you first register you will create an account, which means you can log back in and make payment via credit card, update your details, obtain another copy of your ticket and invoice etc. Please remember your username (your email) and password (that you will create). 



This year we are offering 3 price levels to encourage you to register earlier rather than later:

  • ‘Early bird’ tickets, that will automatically expires: Thursday 19 April 5pm
  • ‘Regular price‘ tickets, that will automatically expires: Friday 11 May 5pm
  • ‘Just in time’ tickets, that will close on Friday 18 May 5pm

This year's ticket choices are:

Conference Tickets

  • Full package: includes a choice of all sessions, morning tea, lunch and afternoon tea on both Friday & Saturday plus cocktail style dinner party on Friday night with one complimentary drink.
  • 2 days: includes a choice of all sessions, morning tea, lunch and afternoon tea.
  • 1 day (Friday) including dinner party: includes a choice of all sessions, morning tea, lunch and afternoon tea plus cocktail style dinner party on Friday night with one complimentary drink.
  • 1 day (Friday or Saturday): includes a choice of all sessions, morning tea, lunch and afternoon tea.
  • Dinner party ticket: cocktail style dinner party on Friday night with one complimentary drink.

Pre-Conference Tickets
NB: Serious Fun Workshop OR Bush Adventure Therapy Workshop. You cannot select both as they are at the same time.

  • Pre-conference Serious Fun (1): Professional development workshop for 1 person. These tickets do not include catering.
  • Pre-conference Serious Fun (2): Professional development workshop for 3 people (Discounted price for 3). These tickets do not include catering.
  • Bush Adventure Therapy 101 Workshop (1): These tickets do not include catering.
  • Bush Adventure Therapy 101 Workshop AABAT members or students (2): These tickets do not include catering.


Payment via Credit Card: select 'Event Services Payment Gateway'. You will receive a tax invoice/receipt of payment to your email address post payment.

Payment via Direct Debit: select 'EFT Direct Credit'. Further details with an invoice and payment details will be sent to you via email.
This is also the option to select when you are after a Tax Invoice prior to payment: An email will be sent to you with a link to an invoice. You can make payment via EFT with the banking details provided on this invoice or you can make payment via Credit Card by logging into your account.

If you require assistance, please use the 'Contact Us' section below and we will be able to assist you in completing your registration.

We do hope that you enjoy the experience!

Remember: Buy your tickets earlier and save. Last minute ticket purchases will cost more.


Exhibitors have the option to select from three levels: Gold, Silver and Bronze. If you would like to be part of the exhibitor area this year, please register by clicking here which will take you to another page that looks similar to this one. All exhibitor costs, benefits and registration details will be outlined in this one place.

If you would like to still obtain some of the benefits of being an exhibitor at this year's conference, however do not wish to have a physical presence in the exhibitor area, please call Andrew Knight, CEO, Outdoors Victoria on 0437 452 456 to discuss your options.

There are limited places for each level available so don’t miss out, sign up for your place today!


The following attendees are eligible for discounted tickets. Use the appropriate code when registering.

Just before payment, there will be a field to enter the code titled 'VIP CODE' 

Discount applies to all tickets excluding dinner only ticket and pre-conference workshops. 

  • Full-time Students: Discount Code: S2018
    45% off Early Bird tickets 
    50% off Normal Rate tickets 
    15% Just In Time tickets 
  • Presenters 15% off - Discount Code: Pres2018
  • All OV Affiliate Members 15% off - Discount Code: AFF2018
  • OV Affiliate Plus Members 15% off - Discount Code: AFF+2018
  • Key Supporting Affiliated Members 15 % off - Discount Code: AFFKEY2018
  • Staff members, Volunteers and Sponsors will receive their own discount code
  • OV Key Supporters are eligible for free Gold Exhibitors ticket worth $2500. Discount Code: KEY2018

All codes are case sensitive. Please ensure you press 'apply' prior to continuing with payment to ensure that the code is applied correctly. 


Can I request an invoice first to take to my boss?

Yes of course. Please refer to the payment options on the left. 

What are the overnight accommodation options this year?
We are not providing accommodation this year but stay tuned to our newsletter and website for updates on accommodation discounts in the area.

What are my transport/parking options getting to the event?
We encourage that you take public transport as the campus is not far from Footscray Station. Ticketed parking is available on campus. Please find more details here

Is my registration/ticket transferrable?
Yes, if the person you are transferring to can prove they are eligible for the same ticket. If not we can refund and issue a new ticket. 

Can I update my registration information?
Definitely! Upon registering you will create an account for your registration. A confirmation email will be sent to you upon completion with a link to your login. You will be able to update your details here. 

Do I have to bring my printed ticket to the event?
Yes, but it can be the electronic copy. We will again be attempting to check everyone digitally this year.

What is the refund policy?
If you have a good reason and you apply within 7 days of the conference it should be fine. Please use the contact form below to submit your request.

Pre-Conference Serious Fun Workshop
Building Connections Before Content

When: Thursday 24 May 2018, 9.00AM - 4.00PM
Where: Victoria University, Footscray Park Campus, Melbourne 

We would like to invite you to an exciting event to promote productive relationships between research, policy and practice in outdoor learning.

Research clearly shows that programs which intentionally develop trusting and healthy relationships out-perform all other programs on so many levels - greater participation, stronger communities and extremely happy participants.

If this is what you're looking for, this workshop is for you.

Anyone can lead a series of fun, outdoor activities. What matters most is how you leave people feeling at the end of your program.

Fun group games and activities are one of the most powerful (and attractive) ways to help people connect, and strong relationships amplify the results of whatever you're trying to get done (no matter your content.)

This NEW, highly interactive workshop will guide you through a sequence of incredibly fun group activities and presentations in which you will learn:

  • The three universal truths of programming and the impact these have on the success of your program;
  • Dozens of new, innovative and highly enjoyable activities which you can immediately integrate into your setting to connect people to one another and build strong communities;
  • Simple, yet powerful, four-step sequential framework that is proven to create remarkably fun programs; and
  • Critical program leadership skills to help you inspire, equip and empower your group to be the best it can be.

BONUS #1: FREE one-month's subscription to playmeo's activity database (featuring 350+ group activities;) and
BONUS #2: FREE copy of Mark's latest book Serious Fun.

NOTE: Please note that no catering will be provided on this day and you will need to bring your own. 


Mark Collard is an experiential trainer, speaker & author. He is the founder & director of playmeo, a small professional development company which hosts the largest online database of group games & activities in the world. He is best known for his innovative workshops, playful keynote addresses & his best-selling books including No Props, Count Me In & Serious Fun. Mark is a Board member of Outdoors Victoria and presents frequently at many state, national & international conferences.

Pre-Conference Workshop
Bush Adventure Therapy 101

When: Thursday 24 May 2018, 9.00am - 4.00pm
Where: Victoria University, Footscray Park Campus

This 1-day workshop will provide an introduction to bush adventure therapy history, definitions, research evidence, theories, principles and practices. An overview of Australian BAT programs will be provided, including the range of target groups, models and practice frameworks that exist, and a closer look at some key program examples. Commonalities and diversities will be discussed, along with an introduction to ethics, safety and use of therapeutic frames. A resource folder of readings and contacts will be provided. No prior experience is necessary, just a sense of adventure and some comfortable clothing.

Through this workshop, you will develop an understanding about the breadth of Bush Adventure Therapy practices in Australia, gain some knowledge of the history and culture that informs current practices and build some ideas about how your work can be strengthened by this field of practice.

This workshop is well suited to people who are new to the field or people with more experience who are looking to take on more of an advocacy role in their work.


Ben Knowles
Over his working life Ben has found himself traversing the fields of outdoor education, teaching, training, bush adventure therapy and clinical therapy. Now, Ben is a director of Adventure Works, offering a suit of BAT services in Australia ( He also works as a clinician with Berry Street’s Take Two program (

Since 2007, Ben has been significantly involved in the establishment of the Australian Association for Bush Adventure Therapy Inc. He has held a number of roles including four years as Chairperson (2010 – 2014) and currently holds the position of Secretary.

Find out more about Ben's professional background here.

NOTE: Please note that no catering will be provided on this day and you will need to bring your own.

Rachael Millsom
Rachael is passionate about the healing power of nature and positive connections with others. She comes from a diverse background and has worked in corporate and community sectors, she has worked as an outdoor educator, family therapist and counsellor. Now days Rachael works mostly with women in the Bush Adventure Therapy field, Rachael believes in the strength and resilience of women and their children and how positive connections with others and nature can build and support this.
It was these experiences, following a life of outdoor adventures, that cemented in Rachael that she loved working with people in the outdoors, this is where she also saw its therapeutic power.

Rachael completed training in outdoor recreation and worked as an outdoor educator for groups of young people in the early 2000’s. Since then, Rachael has worked as an environmental scientist, enjoying many hours working in the outdoors with a variety of people, she has trained as a counsellor and worked in a number of roles including as a youth and family counsellor and social worker. During this time Rachael also had two children and grew passionate about supporting mothers, which saw her volunteer with parentline and the Australian Breastfeeding Association. In 2013 Rachael began a private practice offering counselling and meditation. She later extended this practice to include running retreats and women’s circles. It was also at this time that Rachael got involved with the Australian Association of Bush Adventure Therapy where she is currently the Victorian Regional Representative on the AABAT committee.

Nature and the outdoors continues to be an important part of Rachael’s personal life, she enjoys walking, hiking, camping, mountain biking and spending time in her garden. It is to nature she retreats when she needs to step out of the ordinary.








Victorian Representative
Australian Association for Bush Adventure Therapy

Contact Us

Use this contact form to contact Victoria University Event Services for all registration, ticketing, payment queries. If you have a query directly relating to Outdoors Victoria please email

VU Events