Outdoor Council Australia e-news September 2016
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Welcome to the new look of Outdoor Council Australia e-news. Here we will provide you; our members, or member bodies, with current industry news on upcoming events, training, standards, and any other exciting news relevant to our sector. Currently only our member organisations receive this newsletter, so if you could please distribute this through your membership as you wish that would be much appreciated.
What's been happening?

An update on the Australian Adventure Activity Standards!

Core standards consultation:
The draft core standards have been released for public consultation, readable online via the website or available to download in PDF form. The core standards form all of the common content for all activity standards. No matter what adventure activity you do, everyone is encouraged to provide feedback on the core standards. Feedback will close on the 30th September, so make sure you have your say. It is up to you, but we hope you will fill in the “general” impressions feedback form, as well as any specific feedback on any of the section(s).

The Bushwalking and Camping TWG:
The Bushwalking and Camping Technical Working Group has been confirmed. The Steering Committee had a select choice of members from a large field of 26 very experienced and more than suitable nominees.

The TWG will consist of:
          -Frank Barr, Scouts, NSW
          -Daniel Byrne, Outward Bound, ACT
          -Chris Day, NT Government, NT
          -Gavin Dale, Bushwalking Australia/Bushwalking QLD, QLD
          -Luke Duncan, Wilderness Escape, Outdoors SA, SA
          -Sharon Ferguson, NOLS, WA
          -Bill Gehling, Bushwalking Australia/Walking SA, SA
          -David Marsden, Victoria University, VIC
          -Nicolas Scharm, Trek Tours, TAS
          -Liam Sullivan, PLC, WA

A short profile of the members will be available shortly on the working groups members page.

Draft schedule of activity standard development:
A draft schedule of the activity standard development is available.
Here is the proposed schedule for August through to December 2016
          -Bushwalking & Camping (established)
          -Rock Climbing & Abseiling (artificial & natural)
          -Horse trail & camel
For the rest of the schedule please click here.

This draft schedule will help give a sense of when invitations for nominations for the various Technical Working Group’s will be scheduled. There is still a need to check with stakeholders around the timing and establishment of these activity TWG’s.

Progress and changes will be updated as necessary.
After the AGM a number of new members were appointed to the board.  One of these newly appointed members is Dom Courtney.

You can see his biography below. 
Dom Courtney joined the Board of the OCA in May 2016 and has been Executive Officer of QORF since September 2015.
Before joining QORF, Dom worked for 15 years in property management and recreation/land management roles for both local councils and the State government in Queensland, and in the construction sector prior to that. Dom is proudly Queensland born and bred, having lived and worked in many locations across the Sunshine State, but also enjoys travel within Australia and overseas.
Dom enjoys travel, bushwalking, camping, motorbike riding, and is getting into the wonderful world of mountain biking (slowly).
In 2003, Dom took about 9 months off work to undertake a motorbike trip around Australia, camping and bushwalking along the way – a journey that he says recharged and refocussed his entire being…
The Emergency+ app is a free app developed by Australia's emergency services and their Government and industry partners.
The app uses GPS functionality built into smart phones to help a Triple Zero (000) caller provide critical location details required to mobilise emergency services.

Other news  

Outdoor Recreation Technical Advisory Committee 
SkillsIQ are now in the position to form an Outdoor Recreation Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) to provide industry input into the development of a Business Case to review the Outdoor Recreation Training Package.

They are looking for expressions of interest in the Technical Advisory Committee.

For more information please follow the links to the documents:
If anyone has any questions at all please ring or email Liz Horne. She is normally in the office Monday through Wednesdays, but is available by phone throughout the week. 

Liz Horne
Skills Engagement Specialist
P +61 2 9392 8100    |    M +61 438 106 161

The UPLOADS Project
The UPLOADS first key issue report: Campcraft has been released and the latest 12 month report is now in production and due for release later this year. The UPLOADS reports are designed to help gain a better understanding of how to prevent incidents that occur during outdoor led activities.

UPLOADS is also being redesigned to make it Smartphone and tablet compatible.

In collaboration with Outdoors Victoria and The Outdoor Education Group, the UPLOADS project team have facilitated two workshops this year. The aim of these workshops being to demonstrate the importance and significance of bridging the research-practice gap in led outdoor activities and provide practical guidance on injury prevention in the delivery of led outdoor activity programs. If you would like to organise a workshop in your state, please contact Amanda Clancy ( or Paul Salmon (

The UPLOADS team will be heading to NSW to the Outdoor Practitioners Conference from the 21st to the 23rd of October, hosted by ORIC. On Friday the 21st of October, the UPLOADS team will be hosting a workshop from 10am to 3pm which will use case studies and learning-from-systems based incident investigation to give practical insights on incident prevention. Lessons learned from specific case studies will help practitioners to make a genuine contribution to preventing future incidents.

The UPLOADS research team can be reached by email at

If you have any general questions about the UPLOADS project, please contact Amanda Clacy (; +617 5456 5904)

If you would like to contribute to the National Incident Dataset, please contact Michelle van Mulken (; +617 5456 5404)

Australian Standards Challenge Course

AS 2316.2.1 & AS 2316.2.2 on artificial climbing structures and challenge courses has been approved through the Committee ballot process and are now being prepared for publication.

National Outdoor Leader Registration Scheme (NOLRS)
NOLRS is continuing to provide a nationally portable endorsement of outdoor leaders current skills, knowledge and experience. 

The administrative role for this is being hosted by Christian Venues Association (CVA). If you wish to register or need more information; please forward all correspondence to or phone 02 4587 7155.

Outdoor Youth Program Research Alliance (OYPRA)
Phase 1 and most of Phase 2 has been completed. The Outdoor Youth Program Research Alliance is also developing:
  • an academic and industry report to be finished in October;
  • a literacy review that is set to be completed by December; and
  • Phase 3 reports which is set to take the rest of the year
Head to the website to learn more about OYPRA.

Journal of Outdoor and Environmental Education  (JOEE)
The Journal of Outdoor and Environmental Education is continuing in its new format and John Quay is heading up the renamed journal; with the administrative side of this being done through Queensland Outdoor Recreation Federation (QORF), Hubertien Wichers The journal is published approximately twice a year and sent to subscribing members of the Outdoor Council of Australia, as well as individual and institutional standing order subscribers. To subscribe please fill in a form.

To submit a manuscript to JOEE please refer to the Contributor Guidelines before submitting to the editor via this email address:

Outdoor Council Australia (OCA) Constitution
The Outdoor Council Constitution is in the process of being redrawn to develop a better structure for the OCA in the future. This should be completed by the end of the year.

Public Forum
There will be a public forum happening in the near future on the 'Strategic Outdoor Plan for Australia'. If you want to be involved please email us at: You can also stay tuned through our Facebook page:

New website
The website is being revamped over the next few months and is set to be released soon.

If you wish to share any Australia wide news relating to the Outdoors please send us an email at:
The Secretarial role of Outdoor Council Australia is being administered by Outdoors SA.
If you have any inquiries please email us at:
OCA Website
Copyright © 2016 Outdoor Council of Australia, All rights reserved.

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