The Postvention Australia?conference brings together those bereaved by suicide and individuals/organisations working in the field of suicide postvention.

The 5th Australian Postvention Conference
Surviving the Impact of Suicide


Thursday 23rd March – Saturday 25th March 2017

John Niland Scientia Building, University of New South Wales, Sydney

Conference Website
Call for Abstracts
Conference Registration

The 5th Australian Postvention Conference will be held at the University of New South Wales from Thursday 23rd March – Saturday 25th March 2017.

This year’s theme is ‘Hope and Healing – Surviving the Impact of Suicide’.
To lose someone close through suicide commonly results in intense emotional trauma, shock, grief, guilt, physical and mental ill health and adverse social consequences. The conference provides an opportunity for the comfort, hope and healing for those bereaved by suicide, as well as providing education, information and opportunities for collaboration for those supporting the bereaved by suicide. This is to facilitate resilience and equip the bereaved with skills to survive the impact of their loved ones suicide.

The Hope and Healing Conference provides a wonderful opportunity for delegates throughout Australia, New Zealand and South Pacific delegates to network and share together their experience and knowledge.

A Healing and Remembrance Service will be held during the final day of the conference, Saturday 25th March. The Ceremony is a unique event that is the heart of the conference, providing an opportunity for individuals, families, friends and conference delegates to come together in strength and community to share and be supported in our grief as we honour and remember our loved ones and connect through Hope and Healing.

Half-day and full-day pre-conference workshops will be held on Thursday 23rd March. Details to follow.

We are privileged to have International guests and Australian presenters who are experts in the field of Postvention. The invited plenary speakers are well known for their research and practice in suicide bereavement.

International and Australian plenary and workshop presenters:
Prof. John McIntosh, PhD
Dr Amy Yin Man Chow, PhD
Dr Michelle L. Rusk, PhD
Dr Paul Quinnett, PhD (President & CEO, QPR Institute)
Chief Inspector, Gary Raymond OAM (Ret’d)
Kim Ruocco (Chief External Relations Officer for Suicide Prevention and Postvention, Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors) (bereaved military personnel focus)
Prof. Emer. Diego De Leo, PhD (Director, WHO Collaborating Centre for Research and Training in Suicide Prevention, AISRAP)
Prof. Emer. Judy Atkinson, PhD (Masters in Indigenous Studies)
Alison Xamon (President,Western Australia Association for Mental Health)
Dr Diana Sands, PhD (Director, Bereaved by Suicide Centre for Intense Grief)
Assoc. Prof. Judith Murray, PhD
More information about speakers

My Story – a lived experience:
A bereaved person will share their story at the beginning of each plenary to link their lived experience with the theoretical aspect of the conference. While it is often challenging to find the words to give expression to the experience of loss to suicide, we know that telling ones story, sometimes through the use of creative art forms, can be healing and strengthening. It can also be an effective way to break down the silence and stigma often associated with suicide.

Who should attend?
This conference is primarily for the bereaved by suicide and for those working with/supporting the bereaved. This includes military and emergency services personnel.

This conference will bring together family and friends who have been bereaved by suicide, the Indigenous, teachers, youth workers, social workers, mental health professionals, general practitioners and medical personnel, clergy, emergency services personnel, researches, service providers and funeral service personnel.

There are greatly reduced registration rates for the bereaved by suicide, including the facilitators of support groups. Limited sponsorship is available for the bereaved by suicide and support group facilitators. Please contact National Secretary, Alan Staines at [email protected] or 0412 164 575, for more details.

Please register here

Postvention Australia 2014
Pathways to hope and healing

Download the conference program and abstracts

The 2014 conference theme was “Hope and healing”. The conference provided?opportunity for delegates from across?Australia, New Zealand and the South Pacific ?to network and share together their experience and knowledge.?The conference featured?international guests and Australian presenters who are experts in the field of Postvention.

Watch presentations from the 2014 conference

Read the conference report – Dr Dagmar Ceramidas

Postvention Australia 2012
Hope, meaning and direction

The plenary speakers included four visiting experts from the USA: Professor Madelyn Gould, a professor in psychiatry and epidemiology, and deputy director of Research training in Child Psychiatry at Columbia University; Jerry Reed, vice-president and director of the Center for the Study and Prevention of Injury, Violence and Suicide;? John Jordon, a psychologist specialising in work with survivors of suicide and other traumatic losses, and the professional advisor to the Survivor Council of the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention; and Michelle Linn-Gust, international author and president of the American Association of Suicidology. Australian plenary speakers included Professor Webster; Professor Martin, director of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry at The University of Queensland, and clinical director at the Royal Childrens Hospital Child and Youth Mental Health Service; Jill Fisher, national coordinator for the StandBy Response Service; Dr Diana Sands, director of the Bereaved by Suicide Centre for Intense Grief; Barbara Hocking, executive director of SANE Australia; and Tom Brideson, the NSW coordinator of the Aboriginal Mental health Workforce Program.
More information about the conference
Conference program
Presentations from the conference