The Sturt Lectures

Laidlaw College’s School of Social Practice warmly invites you to The Sturt Lectures, with keynote speakers Chris Clarke(former CEO, World Vision) and Dr Sue Bagshaw (Collaborative Trust, Christchurch School of Medicine).

New Zealand has long struggled to address the ever-increasing issues children and young people face as they grow up. As counsellors and social practitioners we witness the effects of this widespread issue in our everyday work and we invite you to join us as we engage in therapeutic and theological conversations on this vital topic.

Much of the work of counselling engages with the wellbeing of children and young people. New Zealand has long struggled to address the ever-increasing issues children and young people face as they grow up. In 2016, the suicide rate in NZ was the highest it has been since provisional records were first collected in 2007/08.

This conference hopes to bring counselling theory and practice together with relational theologies and offer practitioners encouragement, and new ways of working with children and young people on behalf of wellbeing.

The Sturt Lectures are inspired by John and Agnes Sturt, who were influential in the early development of holistic counselling in Aotearoa New Zealand. They were also leaders in the Christian Faith.

Chris Clarke joined World Vision (NZ) in January 2010 as CEO. Previously, Chris spent 22 years in health management in New Zealand, the United Kingdom and with the World Health Organisation in Europe. His most recent prior position was as the CEO for the Hawke’s Bay District Health Board. His qualifications are in law and commerce and his current area of interest is executive leadership development. Chris holds a number of community roles in trusts and Tertiary Students Christian Fellowship. As CEO of World Vision Chris has travelled to many parts of the world, including a number of refugee camps. He is a thought-provoking public speaker, drawing on his life experience to engage audiences, and is passionate about alleviating poverty. Chris is married to Karen and they have two young adult sons.

Sue Bagshaw works as a primary care doctor specialising in adolescent/youth health at a one stop community youth health care centre for 10-25 year olds. She is a senior lecturer in adolescent health in the department of Paediatrics at the Christchurch School of Medicine, and she is the Director of the Collaborative Trust. She started her spiritual development at the age of 18 with Operation Mobilisation. She started her working development with four children then worked 25 years for the Family Planning Association in Christchurch and ten years on the Methadone programme in Christchurch: which is why she has interests in common with young people – sex, drugs and rock’n’roll!


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