The NSW Network of Alcohol and other Drugs Agencies (NADA) just wrapped up its annual conference at The Grace Hotel in Sydney on June 6 and 7.

This year’s theme was ‘Integrated care: Working together to respond to complexity’. The event brought together people from across the alcohol and other drugs sector, providing a forum to highlight and foster interagency partnerships.

Experts from across the AOD sector spoke on a range of topics including:

  • Domestic and family violence and drug and alcohol abuse.
  • Integrating sexual health and AOD treatment to improve outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people.
  • The intersect of father attachment and addiction.
  • Consumer perspectives: responding with integrity.
  • Responding to prescription drug misuse.
  • The impact of a cognitive remediation program on a therapeutic community.
Josette Freeman, Brad Pearce, VAADA, NAADA 2016
Brad Pearce – Program Manager of the Victorian Alcohol and Drug Association (VAADA) with Josette Freeman – National Program Coordinator of SMART Recovery Australia.

Some other key takeaways observed by SMART Recovery representatives in attendance included:

  • The increasing focus on the development of a peer workforce.
  • The need to attract younger people into the AOD sector.
  • Increased problematic use of prescription medications (such as opioids).

SMART Recovery Australia presented a poster at the conference: ‘Developments at SMART Recovery Australia are creating an empowering role for consumers in collaborative addiction support, surveillance and through innovation’ (view below).

SMART Recovery Australia, infographic, poster, NADA 2016
Click here to download / view the SMART Recovery Australia NADA Conference 2016 Poster

Day one of the conference culminated in the official NADA conference dinner and NSW Non Government Alcohol and other Drugs Awards (‘The NADA Awards’).

The NADA Awards were established in 2014 to acknowledge the significant contribution of the non government alcohol and other drugs sector in reducing alcohol and drug related harms to NSW communities through leadership, program design and delivery, and dedicated workforce.

This year’s NADA Awards were presented by the Hon Pru Goward MP, Minister for Mental Health, Minister for Medical Research, Assistant Minister for Health, Minister for Women, and Minister for the Prevention of Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault.

SMART Recovery Australia Chairperson Tony Wales was a Finalist for The NADA Awards category ‘Outstanding Contribution’.

Tony wales, smart recovery australia
SMART Recovery Australia Chairperson Tony Wales.

Tony’s nomination recognised the generous contribution he has given SMART Recovery Australia, and therefore the thousands of people that SMART Recovery has facilitated them taking back control over their problematic behaviours.

Tony joined SMART Recovery in 2007 and was instrumental in converting it to a not-for-profit organisation in that year. Since then, he has served on the SMART Recovery Australia Board as a non-executive Director and Chairperson. He is also the Australian representative on the SMART Recovery International Board.

The ultimate winner of the Outstanding Contribution category was Tony Trimmingham OAM, CEO, Family Drug Support (NSW).

Screenshot 2016-06-27 12.17.58
Larry Pierce (NADA CEO), James Pitts (Odyssey House), Tony Trimmingham (Family Drug Support), The Hon Pru Goward, MP.

WINNERS: NADA AWARDS 2016

Excellence in Quality Development Award
The award recognises individuals or organisations that have contributed to building their organisations, or the sectors, capacity to deliver quality services to reduce alcohol and drug related harms. This could include quality systems, data management, governance, workforce and organisation development.
The Winner: A modified DBT group therapy manual, Triple Care Farm (Robertson, NSW)
Certificate of Commendation: The Glen Centre, Ngaimpe Aboriginal Corporation (Central Coast, NSW)

Excellence in Health Promotion Award
The award recognises excellence and/or innovation in health promotion to reduce alcohol and drug related harms. This includes harm reduction, community development and prevention activities.
The Winner: Drug and Alcohol First Aid, Lyndon Community (Orange, NSW)
Certificate of Commendation: WHOS Harm Reduction Program, WHOS (Sydney, NSW)

Excellence in Research and Evaluation Award
The award recognises individuals or organisations that contributed to building the evidence base for practices to reduce alcohol and drug related harms.
The Winner: The Salvation Army Recovery Services and the Illawarra Institute for Mental Health, University of Wollongong (NSW) Certificate of Commendation: Stepping Stones to Success, Family Drug Support (NSW)
Certificate of Commendation: Jude Sayers, Dianella Cottage, Lyndon Community (Blue Mountains, NSW)

Excellence in Treatment Award
The award recognises excellence and/or innovation in treatment to reduce alcohol and drug related harms. This includes the delivery of services, programs and initiatives for individuals or specific populations.
The Winner: Speak Out Dual Diagnosis Program, Weave Youth and Community Services (Waterloo, NSW)

Outstanding Contribution Award
The award recognises the significant contribution of an individual working in the non government alcohol and other drugs sector.
The Winner: Tony Trimmingham OAM, CEO, Family Drug Support (NSW)
Certificate of Commendation: Paul Hardy, Community Restorative Centre (Sydney, NSW)

Lifetime Achievement Award
The award was established this year to recognise the significant contribution of an individual working in the non government alcohol and other drugs sector over a lifetime.
The Winner: James Pitts, Odyssey House (Sydney, NSW) James Pitts has made an outstanding contribution to the AOD field since 1978, including 32 years leading one of Australia’s largest rehabilitation services – Odyssey House NSW. He is highly respected in the Australian and international treatment sectors.