Inspire conference event

Here’s your chance to be uplifted, motivated and INSPIRED. Treat yourself or your team to a day filled with inspirational speakers and motivational thinking at our annual INSPIRE event conference on Friday 17th November 2017.


Held at the beautiful Water Front Function Centre in Sans Souci, Sydney, delegates will get the chance to immerse themselves in a day full of personal growth and reflection while having a good laugh along the way. Take the opportunity to surround yourself with your ECEC peers and like-minded people to gain ideas on improving health, wellbeing and performance; which will positively impact your professional and personal life.


Hosted by Georgina Dent, and with keynote speaker Mia Freedman, co-founder and creative director of Mamamia, the day is sure to be one to remember.



Georgina Dent. (MC and leader of our ‘Resilience’ panel discussion)

Our conference host Georgie, will welcome delegates to INSPIRE 2017 and lead an inspiring panel discussion on resilience. We’ll talk to remarkable people about their challenges and experiences of resilience and dealing with change and how this has impacted them both professionally and personally.


Georgina Dent is a journalist, editor, former lawyer and prominent advocate for women’s empowerment and gender equality. She is the contributing editor of Women’s Agenda, Australia’s leading publication for career-minded women. She has a fortnightly column in The Sun Herald & The Age on Sunday and writes regularly for Marie Claire. Georgie is a regular television commentator and has appeared on ABC’s Lateline, The Drum, Channel 9’s Today Show and Sky News. She was recognised for her advocacy in the inaugural Women’s Empowerment Journalism Awards in Singapore in 2014, where she was a finalist in the journalist of the year category.

In 2015 she was a finalist in the inaugural Our Watch Walkley Awards to recognise excellent reporting of domestic violence.



Meet our panelists.

Karen Shackell, Director of Possums Community Preschool, Tumbulgum.

Karen, a 23 year EC veteran has worked at Possums Community Preschool for 15 years. Possums was recently displaced due to the floods which inundated her centre earlier this year. Karen will talk to us about her experiences and the strategies she used to move forward, applying mental toughness, working tirelessly to engage her staff and the community to rebuild the centre. Share in this remarkable story of resilience and tenacity.





Margaret Maycock, Previous Director of Wallum Community Preschool.

According to Margaret who recently retired after 24 years in Early Childhood, “Children inspire me to live in the moment and to see the world through their eyes. Each child is unique, presenting opportunities to adjust teaching skills and to learn alongside them. Our children are our emerging future, therefore we must ensure they are treated with respect, through the integration of holistic programs”. During her time as Director, Margaret was confronted with a terrible tragedy when the sibling of a child enrolled at her centre passed away. Margaret will share her experiences of bringing the community together during this time. Join Margaret as she talks about the importance of resilience and it’s power when a community comes together to support one another.





Sue Motley, Director of Armidale Community Preschool.

Sue has worked at Armidale Community Preschool for 12 years, and has been the Director since January 2014. Sue started her career as an Administration Assistant and went on to complete her Certificate 3 and then Diploma as a trainee. In 2012 Sue completed her Bachelor of Teaching Birth-5 years and says her favourite thing about working with children is their excitement and curiosity about learning. Towards the end of 2015, Armidale Community Preschool was under great financial strain with the prospect of bankruptcy and Sue has worked tirelessly to bring her service back to financial viability. Join Sue as she discusses the importance of resilience and the strength she has used to turn this difficult situation around.





Martyn Mills-Bayne, Lecturer, Coordinator of the MENtor Program for Males in ECE.

Martyn Mills-Bayne is a lecturer in early childhood at the School of Education, UniSA and a member of the de Lissa Early Childhood and Family Studies Research Group. In 2011 Martyn established the MENtor program for males in early childhood education to meet the needs of the small number of men (34% of student cohort) who choose to study in this area. Martyn’s work in this area has gained local and international recognition for its innovation and ongoing impact on student support. Join Martyn as he discusses the importance of diversity and the challenges and opportunities to inspire men to commence and remain in the ECEC sector.



Mia Freedman- Mamamia Women’s Media Company. (Keynote Speaker)

Join Mia as she discusses Work, Strife, Balance (the title of her new book) and the challenges that we all face in our everyday lives. Be inspired by her strategies on how to deal with life’s every day struggles.


Mia Freedman is the co-founder and creative director of the Mamamia Women’s Media Company. With more than 100 full-time staff who work across the company’s many offices around the world including Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and New York and an audience of millions of women everyday across written articles, podcasts and videos. Mamamia is the largest women’s media company in Australia and has the largest women’s podcast network in the world. Mia was named one of Australia’s Most Influential Women by the Australian Financial Review.



Leonie Percy- Mindfulness Mentor. (Speaker)

Leonie will be talking about the power of mindfulness as a tool for self-care, resilience and connection.


Leonie is a business mentor, mindful maven and author of the international best selling book Mother Om. She is a multi award winning business owner and host of the Magnetic Mama podcast which is currently in 30 countries. A born leader and change maker. A spiritual seeker and truth sharer. Her soul purpose is to shine her light and inspire others to do the same. Leonie is a mindfulness teacher and leads a tribe of parents that are changing the world whilst mindfully educating their kids.





Merv Neal. (Speaker- Laughter Yoga Workshop)

Laugh your stresses away with Merv’s Laughter yoga workshop.


Following a work-related life threatening health issue in 2002, Merv found out first hand that “Laughter is the Best Medicine”.  Laughter Yoga is a worldwide movement of more than 6000 Laughter Clubs in over 65 countries. Merv provides insightful advice and practical tools and techniques to identify stress triggers both at work and home. From a health perspective, laughter boosts your immune system, increases oxygen to the body, improves circulation, and reduces pain. This results in a decrease of colds and flu, cancer, heart attacks and strokes, and depression.

At a business level, laughter increases productivity and profit through improving resilience, teamwork, communication, and confidence. At the same time it reduces stress, sick leave, staff turnover, and sedentary behaviour. Laughter Yoga is an aerobic exercise that triggers the creativity of the right brain like very few others. It’s perfect for people of all ages and conditions.



Angela Grima. (Speaker- Interactive Percussion Workshop)

Enjoy an energising and raw rhythm session with Angela as she brings the delegates together for a fun musical session. This workshop will provide delegates with a real appreciation of the benefits of working together to create harmony. This highly engaging workshop will leave you feeling inspired and is sure to leave a smile on your face for hours.




We all work hard in demanding and stressful roles. Give yourself the gift of a day to be inspired and return to work on Monday with a spring in your step!


Click here to view full program


Cost: Member

Book Now- Member


Cost: Non Member

Book Now- Non Member



Book a table of 8 and only pay for 5 delegates

Table of 8 = $1,000 member/$1,125 non-member

To book a table call us on 1800 157 818

*Table bookings are subject to availability

Reward your staff by purchasing a beautifully presented INSPIRE gift voucher that they will receive in the post or simple reward yourself!

Take a look at the 2016 INSPIRE Conference


Sponsorship Opportunities

To find out more about sponsoring INSPIRE or one of our other events please contact Taneal Bobbermien on 02 8922 6435 or


Special thanks to our Silver Sponsor,

our Bronze Sponsor

and our Lanyard Sponsor

Thank you! Your subscription has been confirmed. You'll hear from us soon.