Professor Taylor AM is a consultant, trainer, writer, public speaker and advocate with an international reputation for her work and advocacy. Professor Taylor’s expertise is in the area of child sexual abuse; violence against children and women; improving the capacity for organisations to address this violence; advocating for policy and legislation reform to enhance the response of statutory authorities; providing specialist training to police, law, health and welfare professionals with regard to child abuse and family violence.
An awarded researcher and author Caroline has received numerous national and international awards for her work and advocacy. A feature of Caroline’s work has been its ability to influence and reform a domain normally reserved only for trained lawyers – the area of law and its treatment of sexual abuse victims. State and federal Hansard documents record her influence and her selfless advocacy which has often come at great personal cost.
In addition Caroline has advanced research work on trauma impact and recovery issues for survivors of childhood sexual abuse including barriers and facilitators to disclosure. Caroline has been invited to present specialised workshops in this area to Interpol police in Europe, the US and Australia.
Caroline is Patron of the New South Wales Victims and Witnesses of Crime Court Support Service, a member of the Clinical Advisory Board of SAMSN (Survivors and Mates Support Network) which is a specialist national organisation for male survivors of childhood sexual abuse; and Founder of Children of Phoenix, a registered charity that assists children and adults affected by childhood sexual abuse. Caroline has been an academic consultant to Interpol’s Specialist Crimes Against Children unit (2011-2016) and was the first academic invited to given the Opening Keynote Address at the 29th Meeting of Interpol’s Specialist Global Committee on Crimes Against Children Meeting at Interpol’s European headquarters in Lyon, France in 2011. In a life and career marked by a series of ‘firsts’ Caroline was the first Chair in Social Justice at Edith Cowan University and also the first non-police officer to given the opening Keynote Address at the Asia Pacific Police Commissioners conference in NSW in 2004.
Caroline provides regular specialist training to Victoria Police at their academy and other police jurisdictions by invitation. In November 2016 Caroline was invited as one of only 13 survivors of childhood sexual abuse from around the world be part of the world’s first global forum for survivors held in Strasbourg, France. As part of this forum Caroline gave an invited, individual address to the Counceil de Europe (Council of Europe) which convenes the Lanzarote Convention. Caroline’s presentation and her ideas were so well received she has been invited back to advance the ideas she presented to aid and support childhood victims and survivors of sexual abuse around the world.
Liana Buchanan is Victoria's Principal Commissioner for Children and Young People, her appointment having commenced on 4 April 2016. She was formerly the Executive Officer of the Federation of Community Legal Centres. Ms Buchanan has worked as a community lawyer and in a range of law reform and legal policy roles, including at the Women’s Legal Service (SA), the Equal Opportunity Commission, the Victorian Law Reform Commission and as an adviser to the former Victorian Attorney-General, Rob Hulls. She was senior adviser to the Secretary, Department of Justice from 2007 to 2009 and was responsible for monitoring and review of Victoria’s corrections system as Director, Office of Correctional Services Review from 2009 to 2013. She was appointed to the Victorian Law Reform Commission in February 2015.
Professor Pamela Snow
Pamela Snow is a Professor and Head of the Rural Health School at the Bendigo campus of La Trobe University. Pamela has taught a wide range of undergraduate and postgraduate health professionals and also has experience in teacher education.
Pamela is a registered psychologist, having qualified originally in speech pathology. Her research has been funded by nationally competitive schemes such as the ARC Discovery Program, ARC Linkage Program, and the Criminology Research Council, and spans various aspects of risk in childhood and adolescence:
the oral language skills of high-risk young people (youth offenders and those in the state care system), and the role of oral language competence as an academic and mental health protective factor in childhood and adolescence;
applying evidence in the language-to-literacy transition in the early years of school;
linguistic aspects of investigative interviewing with children / adolescents as witnesses, suspects, victims in criminal investigations;
Pamela has research links with the education, welfare and justice sectors, and her research has been published in a wide range of international journals. She is frequently called upon to address education, health, welfare, and forensic audiences. She is a Fellow of the Speech Pathology Association of Australia and is a past Victorian State Chair of the Australian Psychological Society. She has over 120 publications, comprising refereed papers, book chapters, monographs and research reports.
Michael Coutts-Trotter was appointed Director-General (now Secretary) of the NSW Department of Family and Community Services on 29 July 2013.
He was appointed Director-General of the newly-created NSW Department of Finance and Services on 4 April 2011.
Before that he was the Director-General of the NSW Department of Education and Training for four years. He has also been the Director-General of the NSW Department of Commerce and was Chief of Staff to the NSW Treasurer for seven years.
Michael is a fellow of the Institute of Public Administration of Australia NSW (IPAA).
Jo Howard is a social worker, family therapist and consultant. In 2009 she gained a Winston Churchill Fellowship to research best practices responses to adolescent family violence across the United States and Canada.
She has worked in service delivery, clinical supervision, management, training, research and policy. She has worked across child, youth and family services, housing and homelessness, family violence and alcohol and drug sectors.
She has extensively contributed to policy and practice implementation in relation to Adolescent Family Violence across Australia. She delivers training to a range of sectors and supports implementation of concurrent parent/adolescent programs across Australia.
Mill (Minus 18)
Mill is the Head of Trans and Gender Diverse Outreach at Minus18; Australia's largest youth led LGBTIQ+ organisation. Mill is passionate about smashing queerphobia and transphobia in our community through education and empowerment and believes that the safety and celebration of young people should be at the forefront of this change. As well as being a champion for queer rights, Mill also combines their musicality and theatre training to deliver interactive educational workshops to strengthen community action and promote empathetic engagement.
Minus18 is Australia's youth driven organisation for LGBTI youth. Minus18 smash homophobia, biphobia and transphobia through top-notch events, resources, workshops and campaigns. Each year, more than 150,000 LGBTI youth access Minus18 online support.
Dr. Karen Hallam
Karen has been an active researcher in the mental health field for the past 14 years with a practical and research focus on young adults. Karen completed her PhD in the Department of Psychiatry at Austin Health in bipolar disorders and then moved as a research fellow to the bipolar research and treatment team at ORYGEN Research Centre. In 2009, Karen moved to Victoria University as a lecturer (becoming senior lecturer) in the clinical psychology training program. Most recently, Karen worked in the Centre for Chronic Disease at Victoria University developing models for researching interprofessional education and practice. Karen has an extensive publication track record in the mental health field and is keen to bring her skills to YSAS to support research that improves the quality of life of young people. Alongside her research work, Karen is a clinical psychologist with experience in public mental health and private practice settings. In her current role, Karen supervises postgraduate research students at YSAS but she is also an AHPRA accredited supervisor of Clinical Psychologists and students.
Silvana is a health and wellbeing practitioner and a body oriented psychotherapist working in the field of complex and relational trauma for 25 years. She is trained in Occupational Therapy, Family and Systems Therapy and Somatic Experiencing, a body based psychotherapy; with additional studies in mental health, addictions, dual diagnosis, attachment, mindfulness, yoga and meditation.
Silvana works with attachment, embodiment and somatic regulation, supporting people of all ages to heal from traumatic events both within the public sector and in private practice. She works with children, young people at risk of disengagement in a sensory motor gym providing experiences of embodied co and self-regulation, inclusive of family, carer or worker participation.
Her public health roles include service development across the specialist mental health workforce in culturally responsive practice, reflective practice and supervision within the youth AOD sector and mental health service design and implementation for young people who have experienced multiple and intersecting adverse life events.
She frequently facilitates workshops across health and wellbeing sectors, focusing on the neurobiology of embodiment and attachment based regulation for both clients and workers; supporting a wellbeing approach across the workforce and enabling access to greater presence and coherence in the work.
Silvana practices from a human rights framework that promotes compassion, diversity and equity; advocating for social inclusion in the building of community capital.
Paul has around 18 years of experience in martial arts and meditation practice. He has studied intensively in Australia, Thailand, India, Taiwan and Japan. Paul is a recognised instructor of taiji (tai-chi) with Heaven Man Earth Taiji International.
Paul is a Senior Trainer and Practice Consultant at YSAS. He is a qualified Youth Worker with almost 15 years of experience in the Youth AOD field. He has worked with young people across multiple YSAS programs in the inner city, inner west and in Gippsland including residential withdrawal, primary health day programs, assertive outreach, community development, justice and case management.
Paul has held various leadership roles at YSAS for a number of years as a senior practitioner and providing management in residential withdrawal, supervising staff and providing clinical and team leadership.
Influenced by his work in the youth AOD field, Paul has worked to develop the principles of taiji, qigong and meditation as practical tools for emotional regulation and stress management for young people and professionals alike.
Horace is a youth worker and family therapist with over 17 years experience working with children, young people and families. He has a special interest in assisting families face the challenges of supporting a loved one who has drug and alcohol issues or is in contact with the criminal justice system. Horace’s presentations are filled with real stories from the street, but are grounded in sound scientific evidence and the latest research into ‘what works’ to support young people’s health and wellbeing.
Horace is Senior Trainer and Practice Consultant at the Youth Support and Advocacy Service (YSAS) a leading youth health not-for-profit agency that enables highly vulnerable and high risk young people, or those at risk of becoming so, with substance dependence and misuse, mental illness and social disconnection to take control of their health and wellbeing.
Dr Kate Hall
Kate is both a clinician and academic who has dedicated her research and practice to the treatment of co-occurring addiction and mental health issues for over 15 years. She is a scientist-practitioner and has expertise in evidence based treatments for addiction (e.g. CBT and motivational interviewing) and acceptance based cognitive behavioural therapies for mental disorders (e.g. DBT & ACT). Kate is a chief investigator on several treatment trials currently being conducted in the AOD sector and has published on the translation of evidence based treatment in to practice. Her research ultimately works towards reducing the gap between research and practice through the development and evaluation of psychological interventions that are translatable to youth AOD and mental health service settings. Kate is a Senior Lecturer in Addiction and Mental Health at Deakin University, a Senior Clinical Psychologist at Victoria’s Youth Support and Advocacy Service (YSAS) and lectures in the postgraduate programs at Monash, La Trobe and Swinburne Universities. She runs a private clinical psychology practice in Collingwood and is a consultant psychologist for the AFL Players Association.
Madeline has a special interest in nonsuicidal self-injury (NSSI), recently submitting her PhD into the psychosocial determinants of the acts and functions of nonsuicidal self-injury. At Nillumbik Community Health Service, she was the Project Officer on the Managing Deliberate Self Harm Project, and then co-developed and co-facilitated the From Harm To Calm therapeutic group. Madeline has also worked as a youth, school, and trauma counsellor. She has presented numerous seminars and workshops on managing NSSI in adolescents. Most recently, she has been working as a sessional tutor and lecturer at Victoria University
Crystal Moon is a powerful young woman with a great depth of perspective of the ‘system’. Growing up in care, Crystal struggled to make sense of her mother’s severe addictions and mental illness which perpetuated many challenges for her with identity, addiction and where she fit into the world. Determined to make sense of the mess Crystal began speaking at conferences, representing and advocating for ‘kids who fell through the cracks’.
Upon completing a Bachelor of Mental Health and Alcohol and other Drugs, Crystal began to see the world with far more insight and became fascinated by the way in which human beings interact and the lasting impact we can have on one another.
Crystal is on a mission to draw attention to the trends and similarities between young people’s experiences of care, services, workers and ‘the system at large’ and to find open, honest solutions to working with children and young people who are vulnerable and traumatised.
Crystal is currently working at Berry Street in the Y-Change program, where young people who have experienced disadvantage are trained in professional advocacy skills so that they may be heard and have input at important and high level decision making tables.
Crystal has presented at many conferences, symposiums, run workshops, been involved in various high level system design ‘Think Tanks’ and run classes for students completing their degrees in Masters of Social Work at RMIT.
Crystal is also a mother to a beautiful toddler and a Youth Ambassador at the Mirabel Foundation.
Madelaine Joyce Smales
Madelaine is student at Victoria University, studying Psychology and Sociology. She loves to read classic literature, spend time with her two cats, and learn new things. She also works in the Y-Change team, and is an advocate for disadvantaged young people, particularly living in residential care.
Koorie Youth Council
Bruce Young is a Psychologist with more than twenty years’ experience addressing criminogenic and maladaptive behaviour in clients. Since 2009 he has specialised with the adolescent population who have committed sexual offences. Prior to that Bruce worked with adults who had sexually offended in Queensland and Victoria. Bruce also has extensive experience with the Drug Courts in Queensland from 2002- 2004 dealing with mainly young adults through a piloted diversionary therapeutic jurisprudence model. He is currently the senior psychologist of the Male Adolescent Program for Positive Sexuality Program (MAPPS) with YHaRS. The MAPPS program focus on addressing adolescent sexual offending and by its nature must address the influence of internet pornography, video gaming, changing peer norms, and misogynistic views and desensitisation to ever increasing violence.