Program for Dare to Dream 2 Day Forum

Welcome to the Dare to Dream 2 Day Forum

Day one of the forum will look at Hearing Voices Network NSW readiness to take advantage of the opportunities that will come for voice hearers through theNational Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS).

Day 2 is a celebration of World Hearing Voices Day and we have been fortunate to have Amanda Waegeli, chairperson of the Australian Hearing Voices Establishment Project as the guest presenter for day 2. We will also be hearing from Fiona Orr to showcase the research we have been involved with to raise awareness of the Hearing Voices Approach at University of Technology with nursing students.

The program is available here 2016-dare-to-dream-program-and-info-v0-3-090916


Amanda’s Waegeli Biography

Amanda Waegeli was born in Geelong, Victoria. When she was in her teens, she commenced hearing voices, which coincided with an unsettled and traumatic sequence of life events.

Her life experiences taught her independence and self-sufficiency. Eventually, she moved to Western Australia, married and gave birth to seven children. Hervoices had stopped for many years but re-emerged after the traumatic birth of her seventh child when Amanda was 32 years of age.

What followed for Amanda was the stuff of nightmares; years interspersed with frequent lengthy hospital admissions, breakdowns in relationships, disability pension, seclusion, restraint, ECT treatments and anti-psychotic medications, all to the incessant disharmony of troublesome voices. That might well have been the end of her story, but that wasn’t to be.

Amanda Dared to Dream. In 2005, she was encouraged to attend a Hearing Voices Group, and learnt strategies which enabled her to forge a healthier relationship with her voices; she learnt to dance with them while recovering her life. She has gone on to facilitate hearing voices groups and gain employment within the mental health sector, despite still hearing voices.

She has been passionately involved at the cutting edge of the Hearing Voices Movement in Australia, is extremely well networked both in Australia and overseas and lists one of her proudest achievement as establishing the Hearing Voices Network of Western Australia.

She currently resides in the cold country of southern Queensland and is an ambassador with the QLD Hearing Voices Network. She conducts her own Peer Support, Training and Recovery Consultancy is the inaugural Chair of the Australian Hearing Voices Establishment Project Steering Committee and a recently appointed Board Director of the International Society for Psychological and Social Approaches to Psychosis (ISPS) Australia.

Fiona Orr, Lecturer, University Of Technology Sydney

Title: I now know how they feel’: A hearing voices simulation workshop to develop nursing students’ empathy for and confidence to talk with people who hear voices.


There is some evidence that nurses do not routinely discuss voice-hearing experiences with consumers (Coffey & Hewitt 2008). One way to address this limitation and prepare nurses for practice is through the use of a hearing voices simulation workshop (HVS), developed in collaboration with consumer consultants who have lived experience of voice-hearing (Orr et al 2013). The aim of this paper is to present the findings of a study using the above HVS workshop to increase nursing students’ empathy for, and confidence to discuss, consumers’ experiences of voice-hearing.

370 final year nursing students participated in the study. The HVS workshop included pre-simulation preparation, the 45-minute simulation of recorded sounds and voices on mp3 players and participation in every-day activities, and group processing of the experience. A survey including demographic questions, empathy and self-efficacy scales, and questions related to the HVS experience was completed by the students prior to (pre) and immediately after (post) the HVS workshop and six months later (follow-up).
Nursing students’ empathy and confidence to talk about voice-hearing experiences increased significantly after participation in the HVS workshop. This study highlights the utility of a consumer-led HVS workshop in the preparation of nursing students for empathic and confident practice


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