Huon Valley Service Provider Event at Willie Smiths

On Wednesday 5th of July a fantastic networking affair for Huon Valley service providers was held at Willie Smiths Apple Shed.

This event was coordinated by Huon Regional Care’s Health and Wellbeing Coordinator Jen Wehnert, and was supported by the Tasmanian Government under the Department of Health and Human Services’ Joined Up Services Initiative. Every two months Jen runs a Huon Valley network meeting to bring health and wellbeing services together to find out about each other and see how they can work together. Due to the synergies between the Joined Up initiative and Jen’s role in strengthening the service network, the Government has committed $20,000 in funding to Huon Regional Care to project manage the Joined Up initiative in the Huon. One of the activities for the initiative was to hold a special extended networking event.

Over 70 people from different services attended including providers from health, disability, aged care, mental health, housing, Centrelink, legal help, education and more. The Premier Will Hodgman and the Minister for Human Services Jacquie Petrusma provided the opening address, with Huon Valley Council Commissioner Adriana Taylor and CEO of Huon Regional Care Barry Lange also in attendance.

There was a ‘speed networking’ activity which was a bit like speed dating where everyone was given two minutes to introduce themselves and then move on the next person. There was also an activity where scenarios were presented about fictional characters with a range of needs, so service providers could brainstorm who and where they could go to get help. This was followed by a gourmet lunch provided by Willie Smiths, where providers continued to meet and make connections.

The event was a great success with many exclaiming they never realised there were so many services in the Huon Valley, and a feeling of excitement about working more closely together in the future.

Barry Lange, the CEO of Huon Regional Care commented, “It was a pleasure to have the Minister, The Hon Will Hodgman, and the Minister of Health & Human Services, Jacquie Petrusma at the Huon Valley Service Providers networking event today. Their acknowledgement and support of the valuable work being done by our Health & Wellbeing Coordinator, Jen Wehnert, is much appreciated. Huon Regional Care and local community providers have long been committed to creating better connections across the community to better support people. It was gratifying to have more than 70 people show their commitment to the Network by attending the event. The ongoing support of Premier Will Hodgman and Minister Jacqui Petrusma is greatly appreciated.”

Left to right: Event coordinator Jen Wehnert, Event MC Juliet Sondermeyer, Premier Will Hodgman, Huon Regional Care CEO Barry Lange, and Minister for Health and Human Services Jacquie Petrusma
Huon Valley Service Providers networking together
The fabulous Willie Smith’s staff serving a gourmet lunch