event details

Cross sector forum: building partnerships between the non-government alcohol and other drug & health and human services sectors

29 June 2023
9:15am – 4:00pm
Sydney (GADIGAL LAND), and online, NSW
A hybrid event 
Where: Rydges Sydney Central, Gadigal Land and live streamed online
Time: 9:45 to 3:30 pm (registration desk opens at 9:15)
Cost:  Free of charge

Join us for our third cross sector forum. This event provides an opportunity for staff across different service sectors to come together in person and online, to hear about best practice and build your skills, to network and enhance relationships to build a more connected system to enhance continuing care of people accessing services.    

The forum aims to:  
- Improve partnership between NGO AOD and health and human services sectors, including NGO AOD, DCJ child protection, housing, NSW Health, domestic and family violence, criminal justice; that will support staff to work collaboratively to improve outcomes for people accessing services 
- Build your knowledge and skills 
- Provide a forum for staff/services to network and connect  

In person places are limited and we may need to limit in person numbers per organisation. 
For more details please contact .

To register, click here



Registration open & coffee and tea available


Forum commences  
Welcome to Country  
Metropolitan Local Aboriginal Lands Council


Forum welcome Chris Keyes (Deputy CEO, NADA).



Overview and introductions Michelle (Clinical Program Manager NADA) & Sarah (Clinical Director, NADA) will facilitate an activity giving participants the opportunity to introduce themselves and their service to enhance referral pathways and cross sector collaboration.  



Working with young people experiencing alcohol and other drug use and other issues
Panelists: Levii Griffiths (Project Lead, Allawaw Aboriginal Corporation).  Levii’s current role is Project Lead for Allawaw Aboriginal Corporation working with young people on Gadigal and Bidjigal land in the Bayside Council of Sydney. In this role Levii is implementing a program of support for First Nations young people around their health, mental health, AOD and disability needs. 
Dylan Clay (Programs Lead, Weave Youth & Community Services. WEAVE). WEAVE provides various programs and practical support for children, young people, women and families. 
Mohamad Fenj (Manager/Counsellor, The Rehabilitation Project). The Rehabilitation Project is a community-based alcohol and other drug support and recovery service targeted at, but not limited to, the Muslim community, aligning culturally sensitive and appropriate values to the psychosocial model using person-centred and strength-based approaches. 
Simone Simone Angus-Carr (Programs Manager – Western Sydney, Ted Noffs Foundation). Ted Noffs provides AOD services including resi rehab, community based programs, street universities to young people across Australia. 
Sarah Gomes (AOD Counsellor, Psychologist, Triple Care Farm, Mission Australia). Mission Australia provide a range of AOD services for people of all ages. Triple Care Farm is a residential rehabilitation and treatment program to help young people aged 16-24 to manage their withdrawal and recovery from alcohol and other drug use. 


Morning tea



Supporting Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Individuals, Families, and Communities.   
Teguh Syahbahar
, Manager, Multicultural Programs, Odyssey House. Multicultural Programs provides support for Culturally and Linguistically Diverse (CALD) individuals, families, and communities through direct treatment to empower families and communities and improve broader sector responses.  Teguh will present on some of the specific support needs of CALD individuals and communities, including experiences of migration, trauma and torture, experiences of racism and discrimination, and barriers to support and how these need to be addressed, both by specialist and mainstream services. 

Discussing LGBTQ+ Inclusive and Affirming Practice for AOD, Mental Health and other Service Providers. 
Gen Whitlam, Associate Director, Client Services, ACON & Sarah Etter, Clinical Director NADA. Research among lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ+) populations, demonstrates high rates of AOD use and mental health distress. Most LGBTQ+ people who seek support for mental health or AOD, will access services that are not LGBTQ+ specialist services and these people require services that are inclusive. This presentation will discuss ways all service setting can strengthen their provision of LGBTQ+ inclusive practice. 


Providing integrated care and services to people involved with multiple agencies - a hypothetical case study panel discussion 
This panel will discuss practice advice and strategies for working with people experiencing co-occurring issues including alcohol and other drug use, child protection and criminal justice involvement. The panel will explore a hypothetical case study that involves a mother who has child protection and criminal justice involvement and is needing to access alcohol and other drug support.   
Panelists: Hannah Benjamin, Manager Casework, Department of Communities and Justice (DCJ) child protection, Illawarra Shoalhaven district.
Kate Dodd, Manager, Phoebe House. Phoebe House is a residential AOD  rehabilitation program for women on opioid treatment, and their children. 
Lucy Carey, Complex Transitions Clinician (Partnerships Specialist), Community Transitions Team (CTT), Justice Health and Forensic Mental Health Network. 
Panel moderator: Sarah Etter




Energiser activity 


Providing culturally safe services for Aboriginal people 
Panelists: Raechel Wallace (Aboriginal Program Manager, NADA). Raechel is a proud Wandi Wandian and Wodi Wodi woman from the Yuin Nation on the South Coast of NSW. Raechel is the Aboriginal Program Manager at NADA and also a Senior Researcher Officer at NDARC, at UNSW. Raechel is a Board Director, Aboriginal Corporation Drug and Alcohol Network (ACDAN))

Alan Bennett (AOD Case Worker, Weigelli Alcohol and Other Drugs Residential Centre). Alan was formally the CEO of Orana Haven Residential Drug and Alcohol Rehabilitation Centre and is currently working at Weigelli Residential Drug and Alcohol Rehabilitation Centre. Alan is the representative for the Aboriginal and Alcohol Residential Rehabilitation Network (ADARN).
Tina Taylor (Senior Project Officer, Centre of Alcohol and other Drugs, Ministry of Health). Tina is a proud Ngiyampaa Wailwan women, born on Wiradjuri country in Cowra. Tina is currently on a secondment at the Ministry of Health and part of this role is to lead the development of the Aboriginal Engagement Strategy for the Government response to the Ice Inquiry. Her substantive role is the Aboriginal Program Coordinator for the South Western Sydney Local Health District Drug Health Services. 
Djaleesa Kickett (AOD Worker, Mingu Yabun Program, Odyssey House).  Djaleesa provides support to First Nations people accessing Odyssey House's services. This program is a s
pecialised Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander alcohol and other drug program called Mingu Yabun, which means spiritually speaking and sharing in D’harawal language. Mingu Yabun combines healing programs with western alcohol and other drug treatment models.
Panel Moderator: Levii Griffiths. Levii is a Gamilaraay man from the Gawambaraay clan who has been working on Gadigal land for the past six and a half years in various roles with different residential rehabilitation program. He is an ACDAN Board of Director and currently project lead with Allawaw Aboriginal Corporation.



Bringing it all together – how we can embed cross sector partnerships to enhance outcomes for people accessing services

Panelists: Alessia Salvatore 
(Manager Client Services, Lakemba, Department of Communities and Justice). Alessia will discuss her insights and advice about collaborative practice from her experience in child protection. 
Michele Campbell (Manager, Clinical Services, Lives Lived Well, Regional NSW). Michele will bring a regional and rural perspective into how services and sectors can enhance partnerships and referral pathways. 
Suzie Hudson (Clinical Advisor, Centre for Alcohol and other Drugs, NSW Health). Suzie will discuss her insights into collaborative practice between NSW Health, NGO AOD and other health and community services. 
David Kelly (Acting CEO, Odyssey House). David will bring his experience and knowledge from managing a range of AOD services provided by Odyssey House, including their parents and children programs. Odyssey House is one of only a handful of rehabilitation centres in Australia that allow men and women to undertake treatment whilst their children (0-12 years) live with them. 
Raechel Wallace (Aboriginal Program Manager, NADA, Board Director, Aboriginal Corporation Drug and Alcohol Network of NSW). Raechel will provide insights into enhancing cross sector partnerships to provide culturally safe services for Aboriginal people. 
Moderator: Dr Robert Stirling (CEO, NADA)  



Reflections and wrap up Sarah and Robert Stirling (NADA) 

Forum close - afternoon tea

NADA is a member of