TBC, Melbourne [VIC]



Occupational Therapy Australia is monitoring the evolving situation in relation to the impact of Coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19).
Drawing directly on public health and safety advice provided by government authorities, this workshop has been postponed with registrations temporally frozen until we are able to safely deliver this workshop. If you are interested in registering for this course and would like to know when the dates have been re-scheduled please email info@otaus.com.au.
Thank you for your understanding and patience during this time.



This workshop is designed for Occupational therapists working within areas that currently utilise group interventions or would benefit from developing group programs. Prime areas are mental health, community and forensic settings. This workshop incorporates both didactic and experiential components to support learning in line with adult learning principles.Topics include; ice-breakers and warm-up activities, tips for leadership, individual goal setting and developing a group program from the ground up. 

The workshop utilises the strengths and skills of occupational therapists – using activity as a therapeutic medium within a group context. This workshop will be informed by occupational frameworks and use occupational language.


Suitable for student, new graduates, and experienced Occupational Therapists as well as other disciplines who would facilitate groups.


See below for specific learning objectives:

  • Understand the importance of social recovery for people experiencing mental health difficulties 
  • Understand the rationale for group interventions in mental health and other settings
  • Understand the role of group facilitators
  • Develop goals with consumers
  • Develop strategies for engaging consumers in groups
  • Develop skills in planning a group module ‘from the ground up’
  • Increase your confidence in developing, implementing and evaluating group programs


Gina Woodhead
Gina is an Occupational therapist and has worked for more than 30 years in mental health as a manager, supervisor and clinician. In addition, she has worked as a consultant, a supervisor and a lecturer and tutor at university. Gina has interests that extend beyond OT in mental health. She was instrumental in setting up a physical health program and family peer support service in a community mental health setting for young people.

Her areas of clinical work include large public hospitals and mental health facilities. Youth inpatient and community settings, aged populations, and also as a consultant at a private hospital in an alcohol and substance use unit. Most recently Gina has joined Forensicare and works as a lead OT, and a clinician in the high security unit. She is also the coordinator of all therapeutic programs at Thomas Embling hospital. Gina has worked with all age groups individually, with families, and in groups.

Throughout her clinical career, planning, implementing and evaluating group programs have been her speciality and passion. She reflects that group work combines science, art and skill and is a valuable therapeutic tool in all areas of Occupational Therapy practice.

Gina has developed workshops and training in group work skills for OT’s and other disciplines for over 20 years. She believes that the fundamental areas of developing, implementing and evaluating groups can be applied to any environment.

Sonya Vargas Stagg
Sonya Vargas Stagg is a passionate occupational therapist who has worked with adolescents, young people and adults in mental health for 13 years across a variety of settings, within both the public and private sector. She has significant experience working with people experiencing a range of mental health conditions and difficulties, including psychosis, self-harm, interpersonal difficulties, depression and anxiety. She values inclusive practice, and welcomes working with people of cultural and sexual diversity.

Sonya enjoys working alongside people to support better engagement in the things that are most important to them, no matter the barriers. Sonya has seen this change happen through individual sessions, but she especially believes in the power of therapeutic groups, of which she has extensive experience facilitating.

Sonya is an experienced trainer in many topics around mental health and mental-ill health, and has experience delivering training to university students, the community sector, and experienced mental health clinicians. Sonya is currently the Chief Occupational Therapist at a youth public mental health service, a specialist clinician supporting the community sector, and an occupational therapist working in the private sector.


Total CPD claimable workshop hours: 8

This workshop has been postponed with registrations temporally frozen until we are able to safely deliver this workshop.

Registration opens: 9:00am
Workshop day: 9:30am - 4:30pm

Venue details to come, Melbourne [VIC]

Details to come

Details to come


OTA Member: $370
OTA New Graduate/Student Member: $325
Non Member: $530

(All pricing is inclusive of GST)
Members must be logged in with username and password in order to register at the member rate.

Morning tea, lunch and afternoon tea will be provided. Please note any dietary requirements are confirmed at time of registration.


Our workshop materials are now provided to you electronically via an online platform, Course Genius. Approximately one week prior to the commencement of the workshop we will email instructions for you to follow to access these workshop resources.

If you do not receive this correspondence within the time frame stated above, please contact the OTA representative ASAP using the contact details below. 

To ensure you receive all correspondence we recommend registering for this workshop with a personal email address.


All information is correct at the time of publication. OTA reserves the right to alter or delete items from the CPD calendar as required, and takes no responsibility for any errors, omissions and changes.

All workshop resources including copies of the presentation, along with all supporting documents and links are not for distribution and are the property of the presenter.

An OTA staff member or representative may be photographing this event for use in OTA publications and/ or on OTA social media sites. If you do not wish to be photographed, or have your image published please make this known to the OTA representative at your course or contact OTA on 1300 682 878 or at info@otaus.com.au


T&C's are available here


Please direct all enquiries to info@otaus.com.au or phone 1300 682 878

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