I was fortunate to attend the annual OzWater conference last week in Melbourne, along with a high contingent of the Victorian water sector, given the hometown advantage. I thought I would share a couple of the key highlights from my week:

  •  Shae Abel talking about Melbourne Water’s belonging framework and then hearing from Naveen Maram and Andrew Mellor about their experiences with it.  This is an incredible piece of work that really gets to the heart of why we support equity, diversity, and inclusion initiatives so that all employees in the Victorian water sector feel a sense of belonging to ensure that they thrive.
  • Seeing WaterAble Leadership Program graduate, Sylvia Campbell’s big idea for a panel session around  ‘Build it and they will come’. This was a wonderful initiative sharing how organisations can support people with a disability from the application process through to career progression. I really love seeing WaterAble challenge us to think differently about inclusion as it benefits all of us to have diversity in the room.
  • Chris Philpot from the Water Conservancy presenting on benchmarking for non-residential water. VicWater has been working with the Water Conservancy to develop and run a water efficiency workshop for our members on the 16th May 2024, which will include non-residential water use, residential behaviour change, and educational initiatives. It has been great working with Chris on this and I am excited to see some of the ideas and outcomes from this session.
  • The WaterAid Annual Breakfast and launch of their Walk for Water campaign. It is always good to be reminded of how fortunate we are to be able to turn on the tap and have clean water.

I really enjoy going to these national conferences as it is great to catch up with people I haven’t seen for years. It always makes me appreciate the collaborative nature of our sector for  ‘Accelerating Action’ against our common goals. Well done to all involved for a fantastic event!

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