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What We Offer
Rural Link and Learn

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Rural Link and Learn Is A Series Of FREE, In-Person Training And Networking Events Held Across Regional Victoria For Speech Pathologists, Psychologists And Occupational Therapists.

Connect with experienced trainers and speakers, expand your knowledge and build your professional network in a supportive and engaging environment.

Each Rural Link and Learn event will comprise of a full day of training and educational content and a networking lunch.

Event Series


New Dates Announced

Shepparton – 4th December
Horsham – 6th December
Traralgon – 8th December

Occupational Therapy

Shepparton – 23rd October
Horsham – 25th October
Traralgon – 27th October

What to expect

We’re bringing together health professionals from across the region for an enjoyable night out after a day of training in a relaxed setting.

The networking lunch is the perfect opportunity to build relationships with like-minded peers over a delicious meal.

Join us for an insightful and vibrant discussion about your experiences working in rural health.

Training for Psychologists: Neurodiversity-affirming Practice – an approach to clinical practice (in this case, within a Psychology setting) that honours neurodiversity and affirms neurodivergent ways of being including traits and preferences.  You will have the opportunity to enhance your skills, network and expand your knowledge in a relaxed setting.

Training for Occupational Therapists: Housing and home modification services for people of all ages and abilities including older people and people with a disability.

About Rural Link and Learn

Empowering rural allied health practitioners with ongoing professional development and support opportunities can enhance job satisfaction and improve long-term retention rates. While professional isolation can be challenging for those practising in rural contexts, prioritising access to resources that foster growth and learning can help mitigate this. 

Investing in professional development opportunities for rural allied health practitioners is vital to ensuring high-quality patient care in regions where practitioners often work independently and need to adopt a generalist approach. 

By providing the necessary support, we can help attract and retain talented healthcare professionals in rural areas, ultimately improving access to care for those who need it most.

RWAV has engaged rural practitioners to identify training needs and inform event content. 97% of surveyed practitioners reported feeling less professionally isolated and more connected with other practitioners if they had more professional networking and/or local training opportunities.

RWAV is committed to delivering high-quality and relevant programming for rural and remote Victorian health workers

Meet Our Trainers and Speakers

Overview of the experienced and knowledgeable trainers and speakers we offer:

Sandhya Menon, Educational and Developmental Psychologist

Sandhya Menon (she/her) is an Autistic/ADHDer Developmental Psychologist running Onwards and Upwards Psychology in Melbourne, Australia, an organisation that focuses on clinician, parent and teacher training on neurodivergent affirming approaches. As a visual communicator and learner, Sandhya condenses complex information into simple ideas and injects colour into her resources and workshops.

With a passion for advocacy and education, Sandhya has been a featured speaker at autism-related conferences across Australia. She is also an accomplished author, having written three valuable resources. Her most recent work, “The Rainbow Brain,” is a pioneering children’s book that addresses both autism and ADHD, marking a significant milestone in neurodiversity literature.

Register Now!

Event Series


Speech Pathology

New Dates Announced

Occupational Therapy

For more information, please contact alliedhealth@rwav.com.au

Rural Link And Learn - Psychology | Neurodiversity-affirming Practice Register Now

Martin is a governance professional and lawyer with experience in private practice and in-house legal roles. He has been a company secretary for public and private sector organisations across a range of industries including VicTrack, Regis Healthcare Limited and Dairy Australia Limited. He holds Bachelor of Laws and Bachelor of Commerce degrees from the University of Melbourne, a Graduate Diploma in Applied Corporate Governance from the Governance Institute of Australia (GIA) and is a fellow of the GIA.

With a rich background of consulting and in-house people and culture roles with the corporate, government and community sectors, Andrea is responsible for leading the implementation of RWAV’s People and Culture strategy, policies, processes, functions and team.

Andrea has significant experience in leading teams across culture, capability, diversity, equity, leadership, organisational development and learning programs as well as core human resources partnering.

With a strong focus on building and maintaining psychologically safe organisations, Andrea’s team is dedicated to ensuring that RWAV is a place where people can work well and be well at work.


Rosemary has had a varied career as an academic teaching economics, public policy and industrial relations, and as a consultant, advocate, health union official and as a director.

She brings strong governance and strategic skills to the Board, as well as knowledge and depth of experience in health policy, economics and investment.

Rosemary was a Director of Aware Super for nine years, and Chair of the Investment Committee for three years. She was also a member of the Audit, Risk and Compliance Committee, the Governance Committee and the REM and HR Committee. Rosemary is currently a member of the Investment Committee of Cbus.

She was the Secretary of the Victorian Psychologists Association Inc for 20 years and knows first-hand the difficulties in attracting and retaining health professionals in rural and regional Victoria.

Dr Louise Manning is a rural GP Obstetrics trainee practising in Central Victoria where she delivers general practice, obstetric and sexual health services. Growing up in a small town she has lived experience of the difficulties accessing healthcare in rural and regional areas, and is dedicated to advocating for equitable health outcomes regardless of geography.

Louise is also a Board Director of the Rural Doctors’ Association of Victoria.

BAppSci GradDipBus MBus GAICD FIML

John Biviano is an experienced senior executive who has held many senior roles in government (Health Dept) and also in professional associations related to healthcare. Until recently, John was the CEO of the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons, where he oversaw the digitisation of a range of Member offerings, including aspects of training. 

BA (Politics/Philosophy) BEc GDipBus MBA GAICD FGIA

Roger is an accomplished CEO, Non-Executive Director and Chair with experience in the health, human services, law enforcement, education, transport, and environmental industries – across private, public sector and not-for-profit organisations

.He brings strong governance experience, commercial acumen, risk management and strategy skills combined with a passion for innovation and business development having also been Chair of numerous Finance, Audit, Risk, Investment and Community Advisory Committees.


Assoc Prof Phelps has practiced as a Gastroenterologist and Acute Physician in regional Victoria for more than 20 years.

He trained in safety and quality at Dr Brent James’ Institute at Intermountain Healthcare in the US and has held management and leadership roles in Victoria and Tasmania. More recently he completed a two-year project as Director of Clinical Governance for Central Adelaide Local Health Network.

Grant currently works as an independent consultant providing advice to hospitals and organisations on clinical leadership and safety and quality

LLB BSc MMgt (Strategic Foresight) GAICD

As a lawyer and business consultant Jane has worked with company boards and senior management across a range of areas including IP commercialisation, internet-based businesses, healthcare products/services, privacy and data/IT security. Jane is currently general counsel for .id Consulting – population demographers, economists and forecasters.

Jane served as a director of BreastScreen Victoria for 10 years, is a current director of Ballarat Health Services and chairs RWAV’s Governance Committee.

BMed MMedSci FRACGP FARGP FACRRM DipPractDerm DipMedHyp DipFP DipBusAdmin GAICD

Assoc Prof Rawlin is an experienced General Practitioner and medical educator. He is currently in clinical general practice in suburban Melbourne and previously practiced in rural Victoria for 10 years.

Assoc Prof Rawlin is Chair of the General Practice Mental Health Standards Collaborative and a past Chair of the Mental Health Professionals Association and is a board member of the Mental Health Professionals Network. He is also the Medical Director of the Royal Flying Doctor Service in Victoria.
He is a member of the RACGP Victoria Council.

Albert Giorgini is the General Manager of Finance and Risk at RWAV.

As an experienced finance executive, with an extensive career in public transport and in the automotive and industrial gas sectors, Albert has honed his skills in driving financial performance improvements with a commercial and business transformation focus.

Through his strategic financial leadership skills, Albert has demonstrated an exceptional capacity to lead and develop large teams in complex and changing environments to achieve the financial and regulatory requirements of the business. His extensive experience has given him a deep understanding of the industry and its challenges, equipping him with the expertise to drive impactful change.

Albert has highly developed communication and stakeholder management skills to support his strong planning, analytical and financial performance improvement acumen, always striving to create innovative solutions that drive growth and success.


Lauren commenced in the role of Manager People and Culture in August 2018 and is responsible for leading the implementation of RWAV’s People and Culture strategy, policies, processes, functions and team.

Lauren’s team is committed to implementing activities and initiatives to support the achievement of RWAV’s strategies and strengthen RWAV’s position as an ‘Employer of Choice’.

Lauren is an experienced Manager and HR professional, with a career spanning the professional services, automotive, defence, and not-for-profit sectors.

BHlthSci(Hons) MPH PostGradDipMgt GAICD AFCHSM

Lauren Cordwell commenced in the role of Chief Executive Officer in August 2023. She took on the role of Acting CEO in April 2023 and previously served as the General Manager since February 2020.
Lauren has leadership responsibilities for strategy, communications, data, stakeholder engagement and program delivery.

Lauren’s team is committed to supporting communities in rural and regional Victoria to have timely access to affordable and safe health care.

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