BACKUP: Road Reports

BACKUP for Life: Road Report October 2018

Late in August, the BACKUP for Life Team headed to Newcastle to host our third set of three workshops for former police and family members. Both the Holistic Health and Wellbeing and the Career Confidence workshops were well attended, with former colleagues catching up and family members forging new friendships. It was lovely to see a number of children of our police family attending the Holistic Health and Wellbeing family day, and we hope to see more in attendance as we travel to Albury later in the year, and various other locations around the state in 2019.

Thank you to our mentors, Libby Eichler and Paul Hudson, for doing such a wonderful job welcoming our participants and assisting over the three days. The valuable assistance of our BACKUP for Life Mentors is much appreciated, and it’s also of great benefit that they meet former officers and their families in their local areas. Libby is our first family member mentor, and we encourage other partners or children of former police to complete the expression of interest forms located on the NSW Police Legacy website. BACKUP for Life Mentors are crucial to the success of the program.

It was also great to have Philippa Woolf of ACIM Solutions and Emily Bowen from Forsythes Recruitment facilitating the Career Confidence Workshop. They thoroughly inspired the group to have confidence in transferring their policing skills into the corporate world, and opened their eyes to potential new career opportunities.

On a different note, BACKUP for Life worked with the Customer Experience Company throughout the month of September as they researched, interviewed, and prepared us for our evaluation of the project to date. As BACKUP for Life is now in its third year, it was timely to look at what we have achieved so far, and what we can do to further develop our services. 


BACKUP for Life: Road Report August 2018

The BACKUP for Life Country Workshops kicked off in Ballina on Wednesday 13 June with a holistic health and wellbeing program for former officers. We had a great day with an inspiring group who enjoyed the program run by Margie Braunstein of the Quest for Life Foundation. On Thursday 14 Margie ran a similar workshop of holistic health and wellbeing for family members, and although a small group we had lots of engaging discussions and a very productive day. The workshops finished on Friday 15 June with Jane Jackson, Career Coach, who did a great job encouraging the participants to look at self-branding, how to get their resumes drafted, interview techniques and networking tools.

As part of our team I travelled to Ballina with Lauren Gow, a psychologist attached to the Deployment Branch, and it was wonderful to have her on hand at all three workshops to assist and to answer questions regarding concerns or questions. Craig Semple also did a great job supporting the participants and making everyone feel welcome, whilst introducing himself as a BACKUP for Life Mentor.

Overall we had a very positive and productive three days, with friendships and connections renewed and initiated, whilst learning a great deal about health and wellbeing and career transition. Thanks to everyone who came along and participated in our first regional tour. Without the wonderful input from our former officers and their families we wouldn’t have been able to hold such a successful event.

Our next set of three workshops will be held in Newcastle on Wednesday 8 to Friday 10 August, 2018. Please join us if Newcastle is in your local area as we look forward to connecting with more of our former police colleagues and their families. Bookings can be made by ringing the BACKUP for Life Office on 9264 4531.


BACKUP for Life: Road Report June 2018

The feedback from our workshops in Wollongong has been wonderful, and the positive energy around our former police and their families who attended has inspired many to consider a career transition.

A couple of the participants attended our first five-day career transition program run by WorkSafe Solutions in Sydney. The program assists former police prepare themselves for positions in the corporate world. With businesses such as Qantas, The Four Seasons Hotel, and BGIS as partners, the future looks bright. Former police travelled from as far away as Hong Kong, Queensland and Canberra to participate, so I’m looking forward to the next phase of their career transition.

I’m also looking forward to attending our 3 days of workshops in Ballina in June. This series of programs is the first of a number of planned country trips. Please keep an eye out for workshops near you as we branch out across NSW throughout the year.

I’m excited to introduce Richard Mills who has just started as the BACKUP for Life Project Assistant. Richard moved from the commercial sector to the not-for-profit space in order to support an organisation where “the cause” is the group goal. Before joining the team, Richard worked for the Men of League Foundation. Richard is a volunteer within the disability and child illness areas. “My experience of both corporate and community cultures gives me the opportunity to positively influence outcomes in diverse environments,” he says. “I am extremely proud to join the team.”

I’d also like to introduce Ernst Meyer who is our new psychotherapist on contract. He will be assisting with counselling and referral for our former officers and their families in need of assistance.

With the BACKUP for Life team growing, we look forward to assisting more of our police family transitioning into the next stage of their lives.


BACKUP for Life: Road Report April 2018

The recent workshops in Wollongong were a great success with 45 participants attending over the 3 days. It was wonderful to meet so many new faces, and we look forward to meeting many more in the weeks and months to come. Just as rewarding was seeing our retired police connecting with others, and enjoying the company of some of their former workmates.

The first two days of the workshops were dedicated to holistic health and wellbeing, and were expertly facilitated by Margie from the Quest for Life Foundation. Participants learned about how trauma sits in the body, the neuroscience behind PTSD, and ways in which we can calm our nervous systems. Also on the agenda were communication skills, learning tools, and strategies to stay calm and get a better night’s sleep. 

The family day gave partners and children of former police a wonderful opportunity to be together and learn the specific skills needed while living as part of the police family.

On the final day, Jane Jackson ran her career confidence workshop, which assisted those present to prepare for re-entering the work force outside of the policing world. Topics explored during the day included building a strong resume and learning how to brand yourself, as well as using the power of tools such as LinkedIn to build a solid network.

We look forward to running similar workshops throughout NSW. Keep your eye on the BACKUP homepage for details.


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