Published on 28 October 2019

Gilgandra Shire Council hosted its second Local Government Safety Conference, OranaSafe this week, with over 100 attendees from 16 Councils throughout regional NSW.

Held over two days 24 - 25 October 2019, the conference focussed on health and wellbeing and covered topics such as recognising signs of mental health, eating healthier, feeling better and through this increasing productivity whilst being safer in the workplace.

General Manager, David Neeves says,

“The speakers were inspiring, motivational, knowledgeable and thought provoking. I believe every attendee would be able to walk away with some information that they can use, whether in their home or work life, to better help their own or others health and wellbeing.”


“With the variety of notable speaker offering numerous stories of varying backgrounds, there were many aspects that could be applied back to our everyday lives.”

Councils throughout regional NSW submitted topics to be covered in the conference, with the intention that staff will be able to take valuable information back to their workplaces to aid in the health and wellbeing of staff.

Layne Beachley, AO spoke at the conference dinner on Thursday night, with an inspiring story of her career, leading to the attainment of seven world surfing titles.

Mayor, Doug Batten says,

“Layne’s story evoked a positive response throughout all attendees on the night, with many commenting on the strength of this inspiring woman. Gilgandra is lucky to host such an Australian and hear her stories, and how she overcome such events in life to achieve at such heights.”


“Layne not only took the time to share her story with us, but also with the Gilgandra High School students on Thursday, showing students what can be achieved with determination.”

With such a large and positive response to the conference, Mr Neeves says that the whole community has been able to benefit.

“With over 100 attendees, the two day conference has had a local impact onto our businesses and accommodation facilities, which is vital in critical times such as we are currently facing with the drought.”

Expert speakers through the conference included professional speaker, Marty Wilson; National Learning and Development Manager from Priority Management, Mario Halouvas; Advanced Care Paramedic, Paul Spinks; Anna-Louise Bouvier; General Manager, Move 4 Life, Terry Wong; Rural Mental Health Coordinator for the Western NSW Local Health District, Camilla Kenny; Principal Inspector within SafeWork NSW, Jay Lewis; and Council’s own Chris Horan, Risk Management Officer. Master of Ceremonies was Beau Robinson, Action Coach and former Australian representative rugby union player.

OranaSafe is an initiative of Council as part of an enforceable undertaking with SafeWorkNSW. Council also delivered its first OranaSafe conference in 2018 on Plant Safety.

To find out more information please contact Council’s HR Department on 6817 8800.



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Contact:         Melissa Welsh

                       HR Manager

                       Phone: 02 6817 8800


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