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Carers NSW Conference 2021

The Carers NSW Conference 2021: the Secret Life of Carers was held online on Thursday 7 October 2021. The conference is proudly funded by the NSW Government.

This conference explored new understandings about the carer journey, and showcased new and innovative initiatives in policy, programs and practice in meeting the needs of carers in NSW. Delegates were provided an opportunity to connect virtually and share the latest research, information, and best practice in carer support in evolving and changing times.

Conference Audience

The virtual conference brought together a diversity of carers and caring experiences, and professionals from a broad range of areas including: health, disability, community and welfare services, transport, employment, education, research, policy, corporate and business both from Australia and overseas.


Registrations are now closed for this event.

Conference Recordings

Various recordings from The Carers NSW Conference 2021: The Secret Life of Carers are available on Carers NSW YouTube channel.


You can download the final event program in the link below.

The conference featured more than 30 sessions – with an exciting group of speakers helping shine a light on the secret life of carers.

The program included three blocks of concurrent sessions, which provided attendees with the ability to tailor the event to suit their own interests and needs.

Keynote Speakers

Professor Saul Becker, Lucinda Brogden AM and Dr Norman Swan headlined Carers NSW Conference 2021: The Secret Life of Carers on Thursday, 7 October 2021.

Saul Becker Conference

Saul Becker is a Professor in the Faculty of Education at the University of Cambridge and is regarded as the world leader for research and policy on young carers. Saul will deliver a presentation titled The Secret Lives of Young Carers.

He is invited around the world to talk about his 30-year (to date) research programme and findings, policy and practice, and he currently advises Governments, policy-makers and professionals/service providers in a number of countries. In 2019, he was recognised by Universities UK as one of the ‘Nation’s Lifesavers’ – ‘100 individuals or groups based in universities whose work is making a life-changing difference’. In 2020, AccessHE named him as a ‘Role Model’ for his research which has ‘put young carers at the heart of many universities widening participation plans’. In 2020, the UK-wide charity, Carers Trust, appointed him as their first ever Ambassador, to represent and speak out for unpaid family carers of all ages. He has been featured in 9 television documentaries, TEDx, and more recently (2020) a 25 minute interview with TV journalist and political commentator Andrew Marr on the ‘future of caring in Britain’.

Saul has 560 publications and keynote conference papers, including 18 authored and edited books. He has been the Principal Investigator on 55 research awards, most of which have focused on young carers. Formerly, he was the Provost and Deputy Vice-Chancellor at the University of Sussex. He has held Professorial posts at Cambridge, Sussex, Birmingham, Nottingham and Loughborough universities.

Saul is a recognised Community Organiser, having established three Citizens UK Branches. He is also a Registered Social Worker with Social Work England (since 2005), one of a few senior academics to maintain their professional registration alongside their academic, research and public engagement work. He has worked as a local authority social worker and senior welfare rights officer, and now holds a number of roles in national and local Carer charities.

In his childhood Saul was a young carer. As an adult, he also cared for his mother. He now lives in the lovely sea-side town of Brighton, England.

Lucy Brogden Conference

National Mental Health Commissioner, Lucinda Brogden AM, has a strong commitment to helping others. Her primary areas of focus are issues facing Mental Health and Wellbeing and Suicide Prevention, particularly in the workplace. She takes an evidence based approach to problem solving and social investment.

Lucy has more than 25 years of commercial experience with companies including Macquarie Group and Ernst & Young working in accounting, finance and organisational psychology. Specifically, Lucy has worked in trusted advisory roles with some of Australia’s leading CEO’s, Managing Partners, Ministers and Chairs.

Chair & Commissioner, National Mental Health Commission

Chair, Mentally Healthy Workplace Alliance

Patron, Partners in Depression

Patron, Lifeline Northern Beaches

Ambassador, Kookaburra Kids

Friend, Carers NSW

Founder & Patron, Sydney Women’s Fund

2019 – Member of the Order of Australia (AM)

2015 – 100 Women of Influence – Public Policy

Silver Medallion, Surf Lifesaving – Patrol at Bilgola Beach

Norman Swan Conference

Dr Norman Swan is Australia’s most respected health journalist, broadcaster and commentator and is in high demand as a facilitator and speaker.

Current experience:

Dr Norman Swan has emerged as the go-to health correspondent during the COVID19 pandemic and is regarded as one of the most trusted voices in the country on Coronavirus. He hosts the daily ABC podcast Coronacast which aims to help answer questions about coronavirus or COVID19. The podcast breaks down the latest news and research to help the community understand how the world is living through a pandemic.

Dr Norman Swan hosts The Health Report on the ABC’s Radio National, a regular panelist on The Drum and a guest reporter on Four Corners on ABC Television. The Health Report is the world’s longest running health programme in the English-speaking world and Norman has won many awards for his work including Australia’s top prize for journalism, the Gold Walkley.

Previous experience:

Medicine: Norman trained in medicine in Scotland and paediatrics in London and Sydney before joining the ABC and has hosted many other programmes on radio and television. He was the medical host on Channel Ten’s Biggest Loser for six seasons and two of his recent Four Corners have had a high impact. One of was on waste in the healthcare system and the other changed the debate about doctors’ out of pocket charges. Norman has consulted to the World Health Organisation, co-chaired a global meeting of health ministers in Bamako West Africa and has been the Australian correspondent for both the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) and the British Medical Journal (BMJ).