ACWA 2018: Conference wrap up

23 August 2018

With the LWB stand looking ‘best in show’ and buzzing with visitors at each break, ACWA 2018 was well worth attending for delegates. Its theme was ‘We put children first’ and our aim was to showcase our expertise and talent in the children’s welfare space.

Not only was our new Mockingbird initiative on show – with Practice Advisor, Chris Skinner informing inquisitive sector workers on its benefits – much of the other LWB information available on the stand proved to be popular (along with the inevitable pen and notepad lovers!) Aside from keen interest in Mockingbird, information on our YAP program was highly sought after and the Pillars of Practice and the evidence-informed strategy one-pager garnered much interest.

LWB sent 45 delegates to ACWA this year and the majority of sessions were considered to be excellent. Eight (in fact, all) of LWB’s abstracts were accepted and each of our speakers drew interest both after each presentation and to the stand in the breaks. 

The highlight of the conference was hearing from Isaiah Dawe, a young Butchulla and Garawa saltwater Murri man who grew up in foster care. Isaiah spoke about his experience moving between placements and how vitally important it is for young people in care to know their worth and what they can achieve in the world – and this starts with knowing themselves. 

Isaiah is nothing short of inspirational, and leads the ID Know Yourself initiative for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people in the NSW out of home care system, which focuses on the five key areas of identity and culture, education, life after care, health and yarn time. His generosity in sharing his experiences and vision is something for which all delegates are thankful. 

Our teams presentations were extremely well received, with all generating engaged discussion both in the sessions themselves and over food and drinks in and around the conference. 

A list of presentations and their slide packs are available below under resources and we encourage everyone interested to have a look and send through any questions to