Three new 'Learning in the Outdoors' Toolkits now available!
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Dear Subscriber

Please enjoy Victoria's Outdoor Sector News, April 2021
4 pairs of hands placed on the trunk of a tree
WOW it's almost May and it's hard to believe that in a few weeks, (25th- 26th May to be precise ), the OCA SUMMIT 2021 is being held to discuss priorities and transformative pathways for the outdoors sector Australia-wide. The OCA Board has invited 100 sector representatives to gather together via Zoom, over the two sessions.
If you have any issues you'd like to discuss prior to the event please contact me, Andrew Knight:

You may have wondered what's happened to the Education Outdoors Conference since it's cancellation in 2020. It was decided late last year to defer the event for 2021 to focus our resources on continuing sector support. However we do have some extra resources coming our way soon and are committed to using them to exploring the delivery of smaller networking and professional development opportunities, online and in-person, in the second half of 2021. We also very much hope to deliver our beloved event in 2022.
Andrew Knight, OV CEO

OV's next online morning tea is scheduled for Tuesday June 1, 10.30am- 11.30am, which will be right after the OCA Summit and a perfect opportunity for everyone to be briefed on summit outcomes and where to next. Register here

Kids in the Outdoors 

colourful graphic image of a kookaburra sitting on a tree

More Outdoor Learning Toolkits released

We are excited to announce the release of three new Outdoor Learning Toolkits: 10- Health Education, 11- Sustainability & 12- History. 
The toolkits are helpful resources for primary school teachers to use outside the classroom. There will be another 3-4 released in the next few months. We've added links to print and digital versions to improve accessibility. 

What is 'Nature Play'? 

PLAY AUSTRALIA  is inviting you to the first session of their Autumn Online Learning Series on Thursday 6 May, 2021. 11:00am-12:00pm Melbourne, (AEST)

The free session will be a conversation with Mary Jeavons of Jeavons Landscape Architecture and Fiona Robbe of Fiona Robbe Landscape Architects on Nature Play - what it is & what it isn’t.  Register here 

Environmental Education in Early Childhood

The Environmental Education in Early Childhood EEEC Conference "Sustaining Community Spirit" will be held on: 

Saturday, May 15th 2021 9.00am - 4.00pm at 4 different venues

Join them in Sustaining Community Spirit through Education for Sustainability in the Early Years at this innovative, multivenue event.

Junior Landcare Grants

Last minute reminder that the 2021 Victorian Junior Landcare and Biodiversity Grants close on 30 April. 

Victorian schools and other eligible organisations are invited to apply for a 2021 Victorian Junior Landcare and Biodiversity Grant of up to $5,000 (ex-GST), for projects that focus on:

  • Improving biodiversity through the development, improvement or restoration of habitat for Victoria’s native plants (flora) and animals (fauna), and/or
  • Educating, involving and engaging young people in valuing and actively caring for Victoria’s natural environment.

person in red vest riding a bike next to a body of water

The Uploads Project: Evaluating methods for developing safety interventions in the Led Outdoor Activity Sector

You are invited to participate in the Uploads Research Project which aims to evaluate different methods for developing safety interventions in the Led Outdoor Activity Sector.

If you participate in the study, you will receive free training in state-of-the-art safety methods and a certificate acknowledging your contribution to safety research in the Led Outdoor Activity Sector.
Workshop dates:
  • May 12 to 14, 2021 – Burwood East, Victoria
To participate, you must be involved in safety management, program design, and/or the development of safety interventions within organisations that deliver Led Outdoor Activities.
To register, click here

News from the Field

Welcome to our new 'News from the Field' section. Each month we will feature news or stories from our Unis, TAFES/RTO's & Schools. Teachers or students are invited to submit stories, articles or events (including an image) to Robyn: Help keep us all connected to what's happening in the real world of Outdoor Education. 
This month the team at Outer Eastern Training Institute (OETI) have sent in some news about their Certificate III/IV students who headed to Baw Baw National Park & The Bunyip State Park
3 people with blue and yellow packs on their backs walking in bush
Our Autumn training block saw 40+ eager Certificate III/IV students loading up their packs and heading to the hills for their first week of bushwalking (spread over 2 weeks). For the first week, we headed to the Baw Baw National Park where we were blessed by sunshine on the first day, giving us the perfect opportunity to take in the lay of the land as students focused on navigation and map reading. From here, the mountain weather showed its true nature, and a few students were forced to learn the hard way the importance of suitable clothing selection. Of course, this provided great learning opportunities as we were able to really look at the importance of group management and decision making in adverse conditions.

A weekend of surprise snowfall led us to revise our location for the second week, moving to the warmer climes of The Bunyip State Park. The students, once again, spent the week learning about all the aspects of bushwalking, even getting the opportunity to put their navigation to the test as we headed off track to consolidate their knowledge. All in all, we had 2 great weeks of training with a whole lot of excellent learning opportunities, spectacular scenery and happy faces.

Aaron Turner- OETI Bushwalk Trainer
A reminder to all outdoor providers, as well maintaining your COVIDSafe Plans at all times, make sure you're up-to-date and familiar with the current AUSTRALIAN ADVENTURE ACTIVITY STANDARD & Associated Good Practice Guides

OV Affiliate Membership

Forest therapy logo with a forest background
A big thank you to Forest Therapy Victoria for renewing this month :) 
Become an Outdoors Victoria Affiliate Member

Your ‘once a year’ financial support helps us continue to build our resources and grow our staff capacity to offer services such as the help desk and communications; improve on our conferences & workshops, whilst keeping the pricing accessible to everyone.

In other news

small person in yellow raincoat & yellow gumboots and black gumboots jumping in puddle
HELP the Victorian branch of AABAT (Australian Association for Bush Adventure Therapy Inc.) by filling out their survey  which will do wonders to help guide them in creating even better events, online spaces, workshops, adventures or book clubs for the AABAT community.

Also pencil in this date for your diary and check out their media updates for an upcoming event on Saturday 22nd May Autumn Offering: TBC
Planning for the much anticipated National Outdoor Education Conference (NOEC) is well underway and it promises to be a fantastic event! 

When: 28 Sept, 12:00 pm – 01 Oct, 4:00 pm
Where: Fairmont Resort & Spa Blue Mountains

Don't forget to head online and register! 

Change Our Game Community Activation Grants Round 2
Providing a range of grants and funding to support women and girls at all levels in sport and recreation in Victoria.
HURRY! Applications must be submitted by 11:59pm, Wednesday 12 May 2021
Outdoors Victoria acknowledges and pays respect to the past, present and future Traditional Custodians and Elders of this nation and the continuation of cultural, spiritual and educational practices of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.
We are always happy to add your stories to this newsletter. Please send by 10th May, 2021 to be included

We are looking for interesting articles, resources, event dates, funding opportunities and images from our members for the next edition. If you have something to share, contact Robyn 
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