Safeguarding the future conference - Canberra, 23-24 May 2024

Registrations close at 5:00 pm AEST on Thursday, 16 May

Josey McMahon

Josey McMahon and Cathy McMahon will be presenting at the Safeguarding the Future conference. Their presentation is called Never too late to get a life.

Portrait of Josey McMahonJosey McMahon’s own experience of living with a disability and having a twin sister with disability has given her a passion for the rights of all those who are disadvantaged. Throughout her life, she has had the opportunity to be a wife, a mother of four, a stepmother of two, and grandmother to 9.

Josey is a social worker who has worked in various government departments in the 70s and 90s. She also gained much experience working in non-government organisations providing counselling to women from disadvantaged backgrounds, including those victim to sexual assault and domestic violence. Since the 90s, Josey has been a board member of various organisations providing advocacy and capacity building to people with disabilities and their families.

Josey was the Manager of Gold Coast Advocacy (GCA) and the manager of the Community Enablers project. Josey is the proud owner of Lifesteps Australia, a small business that provides support coordination and advocacy. Josey also works as an independent consultant helping people build great lives through planning.

Never too late to get a life

This is the story of twin sisters Josey and Cathy, whose lives diverged at the age of 11. For the next 47 years, Cathy lived away from her family in a large institution. Many decades later, the sisters’ very different life paths eventually joined again.

In this session, you’ll hear how Josey rethought what was possible for Cathy and helped her move out of the institution and reconnect with their family and the wider world once again. Once Cathy moved into her own home, Josey supported her in becoming an active and valued member of her local community.

Cathy and Josey will explain what it took to convince others that Cathy would thrive in the local community with appropriate support. Now in their late sixties, they’ll also explain what they’ve put in place to safeguard Cathy’s future.

At its heart, this story is about personal change, reconnection, and the power of family and relationships.

About this session

  • Cathy and Josey will be speaking at 9:45 am on Thursday, 23 May
  • The conference runs from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm AEST on Thursday-Friday, 23-24 May 2024

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Pre-conference webinars

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About the Safeguarding the Future conference

  • Thursday-Friday, 23-24 May 2024
  • 9:00 am – 5:00 pm both days
  • Hotel Realm in Canberra
  • Optional networking event on Thursday evening
  • Three pre-conference webinars included in the main conference ticket
  • Pre-conference webinar-only tickets are also available if you can’t attend the main event
  • Flexible pricing is available for people with disability and their families from $0.00 to $225.00
  • People with disability, their families, friends, and allies, support workers, education professionals, health professionals, and everyone interested in safeguarding the future of people with disability are welcome to attend.
  • Registrations close at 5:00 pm AEST on Thursday, 16 May

Register to attend the conference and/or the pre-conference webinars

Safeguarding the future conference

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