President’s Piece September 2022

September will be the most important month for our profession. As a member of this association, each one of us will make a collective choice about two things on September 6th. One choice will be about how this association will run. The changes include having open board positions that are no longer linked to state in which you reside. Some other changes include membership titles, levels, and rights. The bigger picture is that saying ‘yes’ to these changes will enable us to be recognised as a national allied health profession in Australia. The second decision is what to name the collective profession moving forward, using one title and one voice. We are working on a new strategic plan, but it cannot be finalised until these decisions are made by the members that choose to have a say in this process.

While August has been busy in preparing to move the association forward it had its own pearls of wisdom shine through. New Zealand had their annual conference on Friday 12th and Saturday 13th. Some highlights included Dr Brent Wolfe who talked about leadership in therapeutic recreation and Dr Denise Taylor who presented research based on social prescription in the UK and the impact of prescribing social based interventions in reducing depression and other benefits. Truly inspirational individuals such as David Downs taking us through his cancer journey and incorporating dark humour into leisure through the development of ‘cancer cards’. A jam packed two days of inspiration.

We have our own conference coming up towards the end of this month and if you haven’t already registered, get in and get it done. This year the conference is virtual again but with technology advancing, Zoom has developed and enhanced it’s features even more. This year we are using Zoom Events. This is an enhanced interface that allows a virtual lobby. The chat feature will still be available and questions to the presenters will still be placed in the question-and-answer box. We have an exciting program with lots of new presenters. We hope to see you at the conference.

We have our AGM coming up in October. Have you considered being a board member? If you do not want to be a board member, we are working on a number of different projects that you may want to be a part of. At the AGM we will talk about the different ways to be involved with the association.

Until next month,

Charlise Bennett
DRTA President

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