LfS Resources > Learning for Sustainability Conference 2013

Learning for Sustainability Conference 2013

LFS Conference 2013

Thanks to all those who helped make the first combined, Eastern Region Learning for Sustainability Conference an awesome day.

You can read the key learnings from each workshop session HERE (opens into a new window). 

Running for two years previously in Yarra Ranges, this is the first time the conference had been held in partnership with four of the Eastern Region Councils, Knox, Maroondah, Manningham and Whitehorse.  This partnership worked amazingly well and the conference involved LfS Conf 2013 back_of_tshirt_and_plenary_session 160 attendees.     

Foothills Conference Centre in Mooroolbark provided the ideal setting for the day with wonderful, locally sourced food, beautiful gardens, well appointment workshop and trade stand spaces. 

Conference attendees had the opportunity to hear from and be inspired by two world class keynote speakers in Rachel Lowry, Director of Wildlife Conservation and Science from Zoos Victoria and Les Robinson, Australia's preeminent strategist and trainer on the design of behaviour change programs (see further information on both below).

The day progressed with 20 workshops for attendees to choose from, 14 trade stands to explore, ample networking time and great local food, sourced by the chef at Foothills at our request.

Feedback has been incredibly positive from the partner Councils, attendees, sponsors, trade stands and workshop providers and we look forward to coordinating another successful event for schools in 2014 in partnership with the Eastern Region Councils.

‘Thanks for the conference the other day, was really well run, with fantastic presenters and info.’ – attending teacher

'wanted to say thankyou to you for making the sustainability conference available to us teachers.  I find it a massively inspirational day and enjoyed every minute of it.  It continues to feed my passion for taking care of the environment.' - attending teacher

LfS Conf 2013 closing_by_SimonW_cropped




We have an awesome day planned with two great keynote speakers, some super trade stands to check out, amazing local food, plenty of networking opportunities, a wonderful venue and 20 inspiring workshops to choose from. So far we have over 120 registrations across the five partner Eastern Region Councils which is brilliant.

Please click here click here to download the program (please note: this program may be subject to change).


The 2013 Learning for Sustainability Conference will inspire, inform and support all those in the Yarra Ranges, Knox, Maroondah, Whitehorse and Manningham communities working towards more sustainable schools. The conference will bring together teachers, educators, administrators and community members to explore new pathways for embedding sustainability across the whole school.

The objectives of the conference are:

  • Participants build on their existing knowledge and confidence in sustainable practise;
  • Participants are able to tailor sustainability initiatives that suit their school community;
  • Participants maintain and extend their professional networks;
  • Participants feel positive, inspired, recharged, refreshed and empowered;
  • Participants develop skills and tools in planning strategic actions. 

This event is fully funded by participating Councils, sponsors and trade stands and offers a great opportunity for you to connect with what’s happening in the Eastern Region and beyond.  Registrations are limited - get in early! 



Rachel Lowry (BSc and BEd)


 Rachel is Director of Wildlife Conservation and Science at Zoos Victoria. Rachel leads a team of highly skilled conservationists who deliver wildlife captive breeding and release projects, eco-socio projects and conservation advocacy initiatives. Rachel has developed award winning programs that have tackled conservation and sustainability issues both locally and globally, and is passionate about everybody playing a role in fighting the extinction of our world’s precious endangered species. In 2010 she was awarded Sustainability Leader of the year by WME within the Government and NGO sector. In 2011 she was profiled in Melbourne’s Top 100 most influential people through The Age newspaper. In 2012, Rachel led a team whose sustainability initiatives secured Zoos Vitoria the title of the world’s first carbon neutral zoo. Rachel is currently working to raise the profile of Victoria’s most threatened terrestrial vertebrates and is the President of the International Zoo Educators Association.


Les Robinson

Les Robinson is Australia's preeminent strategist and trainer on the design of behaviour change programs.

Les works closely with clients on the design of behavioural programs. He trains managers in the fields of sustainability, health promotion, road safety, natural resource management and emergency management. He facilitates strategic forums, workshops, community events and conferences.

His recent book Changeology is about what it takes for people, to do things they’ve never done before.





We are delighted to announce our five confirmed sponsors: Healesville Sanctuary, SWEP (Schools Water Efficiency Program), Organic Empire, Peter Preuss and Loving Earth.  We welcome them on board the conference team.

Healesville Sanctuary logo

 Healesville Sanctuary is one of Australia’s most loved tourist attractions and the best place in Victoria to see and interact with native Australian wildlife. The Sanctuary is committed to fighting wildlife extinction and offers visitors the opportunity to come close up to unique Australian animals in a stunning bushland setting.


The second phase of the Schools Water Efficiency Program (SWEP) enables schools to access and understand their water consumption and to achieve significant reductions in water use via a purpose built website and supported curriculum piece.

Participating schools get up to two data loggers for free as well as access to a dedicated website for water monitoring and a specifically designed curriculum resource.  Case studies reveal that continued monitoring by schools that used data logging technology to educate and inform students achieved significant and sustained reductions in water consumption.

An initiative delivered by the Departments of Environment and Primary Industries and Education and Early Childhood Development, this heavily subsidised program is available to all Victorian schools regardless of their water supply status.

Visit www.myswep.com.au for more information or to register your school.



The Organic Empire is the place to find the food that nature intended us to eat, organic, seasonal, local, sustainable, healthy and pure with a full compliment of vitamins and minerals. Organic Empire has an organic farm located in the picturesque Yarra Valley.  We grow a large range of vegetables and some fruits, which are distributed through our farm store located on site and home delivery throughout Melbourne.  We also have a food school, where we teach time honoured methods of making amazing food.  We have a strong commitment to education, especially children, for they will be the next farmers of this world.  Through the farm we run the Organic Schools program.



Peter Preuss logoPeter Preuss:




wine producer

 Peter Preuss is a teacher at the Woori Yallock Farm School by day and all sorts of things by night.  He’s a conservationist, an author, illustrator and a wine producer.  He’s into passion mashing so combining interests is what he enjoys most. 

Peter has dedicated his latest wines, a Pinot Noir and a Sparkling White, to his recently published books, ‘Bred to be Wild’ and ‘Healesville – What’s in a name?’

‘Bred to Be Wild’ is a biography of the late Des Hackett’s work with the endangered Leadbeater’s Possum.  ‘Healesville – What’s in a name’ celebrates the 150th year of Healesville town with a light hearted look at the folklores and origins of how things around Healesville where named.

P O Box 285, Woori Yallock Vic 3139

Phone: 03 59 61 5768  Mobile: 0431 756 072

Email: peter.preuss@bigpond.com


Loving Earth Logo

Loving Earth is a Melbourne based company dedicated to sourcing and manufacturing the highest quality organic, fairly traded and wild crafted functional foods available. We work with small producer communities around the world to provide healthy, sustainable & fair ingredients, which we use to handcraft our unique range of raw chocolate bars and superfood snacks.

Having established long-term relationships with several indigenous cooperatives, our aim is to help them add as much value as possible to their raw products at the point of origin.



PO Box 105, Anderson Street, Lilydale, VIC 3140
Tel:1300 368 333
Fax: 9735 4249
Yarra Ranges Shire Council © 2011