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National Outdoor Education Conference goes ahead in 2021 in the Blue Mountains

National Outdoor Education Conference goes ahead in 2021 in the Blue Mountains
June 10, 2021

The National Outdoor Education Conference (NOEC) will be held from 28th September to 1st October in the Blue Mountains ensuring an opportunity for the outdoor community to connect and be inspired again to continue their great work.

Outdoor leaders, activity providers and educators will be presented with a solid line up of keynote speakers followed by close to 50 professionals in their field delivering case studies and thought provoking discussions. Not to mention the networking opportunities in impressive venues such as the Hydro Majestic and the Fairmont Resort Leura.

The NOEC was set to return to New South Wales in 2020 after many years being held in other states, however COVID-19 forced the event to be postponed.

NOEC Committee Member Liz Horne notes “we analysed the opportunities for this conference, online, hybrid, pre-recorded but what kept coming back to the organising committee was the importance of the face-to-face networking.

“By our shear nature as educators we need the connection and to use the combined voice for outcomes, so we knew we just couldn’t host the event virtually.”

While, it has been a difficult decision for the committee to continue with the event, as considerable funds were lost in the forced postponement, in the true spirit of what Outdoor Education stands for, ‘resilience’ and ‘mental health’ the event will go ahead. The Federal Government’s Business Event Program covered some of the costs incurred in the forced postponement.

Mark Brackenreg of the organising committee and Board Member of Outdoors NSW & ACT adds “the outdoor education sector touches over three million Australian students each year. Continual improvement enables us to further the aim of outdoor education of building life-long skills and positive attitudes, or as some would say ‘skills for life’.

“This conference allows us the opportunity to reflect on the rapid changes we implemented during times of natural emergency and the pandemic. Conference discussions will include lessons learnt and innovation that we can now leverage to improve the outcomes for the children and adults that participate in Outdoor Education and Active Recreation pursuits.”

Fairmont Resort Leura General Manager, Ben Mellor advised “major events like this establish confidence to a return of business events post COVID and the Bushfires, which impacted families and business alike. 2021 feels good with more events like this returning to the Blue Mountains region.”

Outdoors NSW & ACT Chief Executive and the host for this conference, Lori Modde advised “we expect this NOEC event to be exactly what the sector needs as a reset following such an extended period of adapting and pivoting to now understand what is our new normal.

“This industry is an unsung hero with the skills they provide our youth in long-term benefits and the broader community. Participants have been proven through research studies to have increased social skills, better mental health and are more resilient. This industry is also a proactive health advocate instilling lessons and practises that will benefit communities for life. So I urge anyone that is connected to this industry or wants to be more engaged in outdoor education for the betterment of our communities to come along and take something back to your community that will help them.”

Early bird rates are now on sale for NOEC and finish on 30th June.

For more information go to or email

Related Articles

16th December 2020 - Event highlights the importance of developing Nature Play across NSW

8th December 2020 - GSCORE helps local tourism operators enhance their marketing skills

8th December 2020 - Awards showcase Western Australia’s contribution to Outdoor Recreation Sector

20th October 2020 - Passion and leadership celebrated at NZOIA Outdoor Excellence Awards

2nd September 2020 - Outdoor industry sector continues urging government to reconsider its COVID restrictions

14th August 2020 - Outdoor industry sector calls for a responsible return to outdoor education

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