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Having a Say Conference

We hope to hold Having a Say in 2023 - so stay tuned

Thankyou to everyone who has contacted VALID about the Having a Say Conference 2022.

We are still deciding whether the Conference can go ahead because of COVID-19.

VALID will give an update soon about our decisions.

We will send information to everyone who has already registered about any changes we need to make. We will also put information on our website and social media as soon as we can.

If you have any questions about the Having a Say Conference 2022, you can contact VALID on 03 9416 4003 or email [email protected]


NEW Registration is open to attend HaS either live onsite or online 

The Having a Say Conference won’t be beaten!
While we had to postpone the June 2021 event to February 2022 due to Covid lockdowns, we will be back to our best.  Our full live program will be on, including the Expo, Disco and competitions.  For those interstate or who can’t come live, you will be able to join in online, attend sessions and have your say!
Online registration at concession rate is only $25 per day and full rate $40 per day. 
Download Conference Preliminary Program
Come and Try Activities
–  Booking Form for onsite C&T’s    
–  booking for online activities coming soon
Use this form to register:    Registration Form
For more information about HaS, download    HaS Info Booklet


Conference Dates and Times

•   Monday 10.30am to 4.00pm
•   Tuesday 9.30am to 4.00pm
•   Wednesday 9.30am to 1.15pm
The Conference Dinner and Disco Tues. 22nd February from 6.30pm to 10.30pm


1.    Conference main venue is located at Costa Hall, Deakin University, Waterfront Campus, Gheringhap Street, Geelong.
2.    Dinner and Chat is at Wah Wah Ghee Restaurant, on the Pier, Geelong.
3.    Disco is at the The Pier Geelong, located on Cunningham Pier, Western Beach Foreshore Road, Geelong.


In 2021, we tried to hold HaS in June, but Covid restrictions got in the way!

So the VALID Having a Say (HaS) Conference will be back to its usual February timeslot. We hope that this will give us the best chance of getting everyone together and enjoying our usual conference activities in a Covid safe way. 

So everyone can be part of HaS, we will have three main streams  online for those that can’t come ‘in person’.

So, come along to celebrate your best friend, who is ‘still’ despite the postponement of the conference, ‘your person’ … or the people who have helped get you through. 

Our Choice Expo 

Limited places available to be an exhibitor at HaS in the Our Choice Expo. 

To register to exhibit in the Expo on Mon 21st Feb. 2022 and/or Tue. 22nd Feb. 2022 complete and return Expo Registration Form.

Email Christine if you are interested  [email protected] 

Download the Visitors Guide

About the Having a Say Conference

The Having a Say conference is the largest conference for people with disabilities within Australia where people can find their voice, to speak up, to be heard and to be respected. This is the conference where people listen to each other, not just to the speakers on stage. This is the conference where people respect each other’s views and opinions, and celebrate their common cause. The aim of the conference is to empower people with a disability with the opportunity to ‘have a say’ about issues that affect their lives and to celebrate ability and achievement.

People enjoy coming to the conference for a range of reasons. Some are keen advocates for people with disability and want to debate about issues, others find the whole environment empowering and some just want to have fun! Many people come to the conference to have a say, such as open microphone to present or perform. We often get comments on the Evaluation Forms saying things like “It was great I felt important because everyone listened to what I said”.

There is always be a need for people to get together to share experiences and to celebrate achievements. The inaugural Having a Say Conference, held in Maryborough in 2000, was attended by 190 people and the enthusiasm generated each year has inspired the conference to grow. There are now over 1,000 participants from across Australia, and often from the international community, attending the conference each year.

The conference gets fantastic support from local disability services, the Local Reference Committee, City of Greater Geelong, Tourism Greater Geelong and Bellarine and local Geelong businesses.

Download the Having a Say Conference 2020 Report here

Download information on how to apply for NDIS funding to attend the conference here

Volunteer at Having a Say

The Having a Say conference attracts hundreds of delegates from across Australia and overseas and we are looking for volunteers to support participants with different activities at the conference.

The conference is a place where people with disability can speak up and have their voice heard, be respected and empowered and it’s a lot of fun!

What are the benefits of volunteering?

  • See the achievements of people with disability
  • Certificate of appreciation
  • Letter of Reference
  • Learn about inclusion
  • Be inspired and have lots of fun
  • Make new friends

If you are interested in becoming a volunteer at HaS then read our Volunteer Information Booklet and then fill out pages 7, 8 and 9 of this booklet and return it to [email protected]

Please note that all volunteers are required to have a current Police Certificate.  If you already have a Police Certificate send a copy with your Volunteer application. It is also a requirement that all volunteers complete a Disability Worker Exclusion Scheme form.

Having a Say Feedback

Your feedback is important, it helps us to make the conference better.

Download the Having a Say Conference Evaluation form here

Become a Sponsor

VALID conducts the Having a Say conference on a break-even basis, that is, to covers direct costs only.

As some of our sponsors have moved across to the NDIS funding system and are no longer able to support us, we now need new ways to fund activities within the conference either in-kind e.g. attendant care or sponsorship of the costs of the activity such as:

  • Come and Try Activities
  • Art Competition
  • Printing of the Program
  • Volunteer Support
  • Conference DVD
  • Attendant Carers

A number of Sponsors did sign on for the June conference that was postponed, but we do need a few more sponsors.   

Thanks to ALL our Sponsors – they are all listed in this here

Sponsorship and Partnership Opportunities      

Principal Sponsors


logo of genU a disability service provider including the name genU and former name Karingal St Laurence. The 'U' is shaped like a smile with two dots above each side resembling eyes
Our Choice Expo Sponsor
VDWC - Disco and Dinner Sponsor

Thanks to all our Sponsors.  

See all HaS sponsors and partners   HaS Sponsors

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Stay tuned we hope to hold Having a Say conference in 2023

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