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Our Presenters
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Kirra Pendergast - Founder and CEO 

After a 20+ year career in Cyber Security and IT Business Consulting, in 2009 Kirra founded Australia's first consulting firm focused on Cyber Safety. KCL Business Solutions completed eSafety Risk Reviews, Policy Development, and Training Solutions for major Qld Government departments and businesses.

In 2014 Kirra Pendergast founded Safe on Social Media Pty Ltd after experiencing serious and relentless cyberbullying and trolling herself. 

Kirra speaks on the topic of Cyber Safety and her own experience with serious cyberbullying, to 1000's of people each week. Kirra presents to students K-12, teachers, and parents at schools across Australia and New Zealand. She is also working with elite sports teams, speaks at legal seminars, government and business events, and conferences. She consults too and advises organisations in Australia, the United Kingdom, Europe, and the United States. Kirra is a regular media commentator on the subject of Cyber Safety.

In 2019 she proudly partnered with Mamamia women's network www.mamamia.com.au to create the Safe on Social Toolkit www.safeonsocialtoolkit.com

Kirra is also the Co-Founder of the eRisk Management Company www.eriskmanagement.com.au a company that provides training and consulting in all aspects of social media security, privacy, and risk management for businesses, governments, and elite sports teams.

For more information or to book Kirra to speak email - wecanhelp@safeonsocial.com

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Kristi McVee - Western Australia 

Kristi has a passion for educating children and parents in the risks relating to potential online abuse. She recently retired from the WA Police as a Detective Senior Constable after 10 years in the job. 

During her career with WA Police she regularly spoke to young people about online risks and how to protect themselves online. She is a specialist speaker in regards to online child abuse and exploitation. She works with frontline domestic violence and support  workers and how to keep victims safe. As the mother of a teenage daughter she is passionate about speaking to girls about consent.

 

Kristi was a trained Specialist Child Interviewer for most of her career and in her role as a Detective investigated serious crime and child abuse cases with extensive experience in the child safety sector. 
 

For more information or to book Kristi to speak please email - wecanhelp@safeonsocial.com

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Antoinette Aquilina - Queensland 

Our Queensland-based presenter Antoinette Aquilina is a former Detective Sergeant with the Queensland Police who for fifteen years worked in the area of Child Protection and Sex Offences as a detective, trainer, and multi-disciplinary investigator. Whilst her experience has covered many facets including Drug Squad, Illicit Laboratory Investigative Team, and Prostitution to name a few – her passion and core skill set always remained in Child Protection and Juvenile Justice, more specifically the Forensic Interviewing of Children and Intellectually Impaired persons. This also saw her work on significant areas of reform and the implementation of recommendations after several fundamental inquiries in Queensland. 

 

As the State Core Facilitator for six years delivering cutting edge training called ICARE (Interviewing Children and Recording Evidence) Antoinette trained 1000’s of Detectives and officers from the Department of Child Safety on interviewing children, the case management of child protection and juvenile justice matters, sex offences as well as skills in conducting complex investigations and applying methodologies. Her advanced skills in these areas have seen her support and guide detectives on complex interviewing investigations throughout Queensland and other law enforcement agencies such as the AFP, Victorian Police, local councils, educational facilities, and even church organisations.  

As a mother to daughters aged twelve and ten and stepmother to daughters aged twenty and twenty-three, she shares a very personal connection and nexus with parents who are in the same “space “ dealing with similar issues of parenting – right now. 

 

Not only is Antoinette passionate about helping professionals reach their protentional but also mothers, fathers, teachers, students, and family units in general, helping them navigate through this forever-changing online world. Over the years Antoinette has volunteered on many boards and now contributes her time and expertise to her daughters’ school Child Protection Committee, in her own words ”I just can’t let all this knowledge go to waste – it has to be utilised and shared to protect children and help others protect children.“

 

As a dedicated trainer, educator, and presenter for over 18 years, Antoinette’s reputation as an engaging and subject-relevant speaker proceeds her. As a flexible speaker, Antoinette prides herself in being able to cater to your organisational needs and deliver high-quality training. Her mantra is to share with others the skills to help them make informed parenting/supervisory decisions rather than dictate information that can make caregivers feel out of their depth.  Now more than ever does the saying ‘It takes a village to raise a child “ apply. Education and training form part of this village approach.

 

For more information or to book Antoinette to speak please email - wecanhelp@safeonsocial.com

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Jane McGowen - Sexuality and Relationship Education

Jane McGowen is an expert in the field of Sexuality and Relationship Education with young people. She has been working with young people for the last 20 years in various contexts, including trauma, child protection, protective behaviours, and preventative education group work. She is dynamic, knowledgeable, funny, and engaging. Her rapport with young people is second to none, and she always has them front and centre of her interventions. 
 

Jane is a conduit for kids' voices, using a collation of 20 years of experience and anonymous stories to connect important learnings from each other, particularly in the areas of Consent, protective behaviours, and bystander awareness. 
 

Jane presents group work in schools for kids, teens, and parents. Jane's experience shows that young people learn best together in a safe and facilitated environment. Her groups have extended in schools throughout Northern NSW and Sydney, where she divides her time. 

Jane's work runs both face to face and online.
 

"I love my work; it continues to inspire and excite me when I see young people come together in a safe, creative environment to learn and share knowledge which they carry into their safer and more insightful future."
 

Jane's formal qualifications include 

Social Worker Graduate, Sydney University 1996,

 20+ yrs experience working in the fields of trauma, sexual violence, mental health

 Group work for at-risk teens

 Preventative Education workshops focussing on Consent for kids and teens

 Sexuality and Relationship Education Programs 

 Individual counseling for children, teens, and adults

 Child Protection Counsellor at Northern NSW Local Health District
 

To book Jane to speak please email wecanhelp@safeonsocial.com

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Jocelyn Brewer – Psychologist and founder of Digital Nutrition™

Jocelyn is a Sydney-based registered psychologist with a special interest in the psychology of technology and staying human in a digital age.
 

Jocelyn has 16 years’ experience in public education both as a teacher of high school social sciences and as a School Counsellor/psychologist. Her 2009 psychology thesis explored the emerging area of Problematic Internet Use (PIU), colloquially known as ‘Internet Addiction’ in a cohort of Year 10 boys.

In 2013, Jocelyn created Digital Nutrition™ – a framework to guide parents and technology users understand the virtual nutritional values of the online media content we consume via apps and games on tablets and screen technology.
 

Jocelyn regularly called upon to comment in the media on a range of issues and present to various groups about the impacts of technology and improving digital wellbeing. In 2019, provided a keynote to 2500 educators at EduTechAU and has spoken at the renowned Happiness And It’s Causes conference. She has appeared on ABC TV’s QandA panel twice and is a regular panellist on ABC Radio National’s Download This Show podcast.
 

Jocelyn has a warm, humorous and engaging presentation style, and the ability to put scientific research into practical perspectives. Jocelyn presents to students on healthy technology habits, to parents on screen time limits and managing devices in the home and teachers on the cyberpsychological issues impacting learning in a digital age.  She also offers digital wellbeing consults to school leaders looking to innovate BYOD and mobile phone policies beyond punitive measures.
 

For more information or to book Jocelyn to speak please email - wecanhelp@safeonsocial.com

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Andrew Kinch - Founder of GameAware 

As a gamer for thirty years, a teacher for fifteen years and a parent of two, Andrews skillset is primed to tackle this issue.
 

"I love video games. I love the immersion, the skill, the competition and the community. That being said, in the past I’ve had the experience of stepping over the line where video games took up way too much of my time and affected me in ways I didn’t expect. That’s why I’m going to know exactly what our gamer is feeling, and how to get buy-in for a healthier and more sustainable way to enjoy their passion".

 

Andrews passion is to minimize compulsion and other negative impacts from gaming too much, and maximize gaming performance and enjoyment, while engaging better in real life.
 

GameAware educates gamers, parents and professionals through school workshops, group programs and webinars. 

For more information or to book Andrew to speak please email - wecanhelp@safeonsocial.com