TrueNorth Conference


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True Relationships and Reproductive Health is proud to announce the TrueNorth Conference, an event that aims to bring together health professionals to focus on the unique barriers in regional and rural Queensland.

This conference will provide insight into the current sexual and reproductive health situation in Far North Queensland and allow clinicians to learn how to better support patients and communities in these matters. The full-day event will provide attendees with an opportunity to network and to hear from and participate in Q&A time with industry professionals.

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Conference Details


Date: Wednesday 12 June 2024
Time: 8:30am - 4:30pm AEST (Queensland Time)
Location: Crystalbrook Riley, 131/141 Esplanade, Cairns City QLD 4870


Who should attend

The content of the conference is designed for General Practitioners, however we welcome and encourage Nurse Practitioners, Registered Nurses and Health Professionals to attend. 



Lunch and refreshments provided throughout the day. Please specify any dietary requirements when purchasing your ticket.


If your organisation is sending 3 or more employees to attend the TrueNorth Conference, please contact for a 10% discount. 


TrueNorth Conference Program


Dr Russell

Dr Darren Russell
Sexual Health Physician

Dr Darren Russell is a sexual health physician and the Director of Sexual Health at Cairns Hospital. He holds the positions of Adjunct Professor in the School of Medicine and Dentistry at James Cook University in Cairns, and Clinical Associate Professor in the Department of Population Health at The University of Melbourne.

Dr Russell is a past-President of the Australasian Chapter of Sexual Health Medicine of the Royal Australasian College of Physicians, the Victorian AIDS Council, and the Australian Federation of AIDS Organisations. His interests include Indigenous sexual health, and the elimination of HIV transmission and hepatitis C infections in Australia. He has worked as a clinician in the field of transgender health for 30 years and has prescribed hormonal therapy using an informed consent model for all of that time.

Sessions presented by Dr Russell include: "STI Update - with a focus on MG & Syphilis" and "Introduction to Gender Health"


TLC-2023.08.23 Teams - Psychology

Shanelle Poppi

Mental Health Psychologist

Shanelle is a psychologist and mental health clinician of 20 years with a special interest in persistent pain management as well as a having an area of expertise in the trauma spectrum space. Her career has been shaped by a commitment to understanding the intricate interplay between physical discomfort, psychological pain and emotional well-being.


Shanelle believes in a collaborative and person-centered approach. She recognizes that persistent pain affects not only the body but also the mind and spirit. Her therapeutic style combines pain neuroscience to better understand psychological factors that influence pain, CBT to modify pain-related beliefs, manage anxiety, and enhance self-efficacy as well as Mindfulness and Acceptance-Based Approaches that rest heavily upon Trauma-Informed Care.

Session presented by Shanelle include: “Mental Health and Pelvic Pain”


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Amanda Hardy
Continence and Women's Health Physiotherapist

Amanda is a Titled Continence and Women’s Health Physiotherapist. She began working in the pelvic health field 9 years ago, and completed her Masters of Continence and Women’s Health Physiotherapy through Curtin University in 2022.

As part of her Masters degree, she completed a research project looking at the content validity of the Fremantle Perineal Awareness Questionnaire (Fre-PAQ), a new outcome measure that looks at changes in perception in people with persistent perineal pain. This has been validated and accepted for publication in 2024.

Amanda began Revolve Physiotherapy, a private physiotherapy practice in Cairns, in 2021. She enjoys treating all aspects of pelvic health physiotherapy, but particularly enjoys working with people with persistent pelvic pain to help them achieve their goals and live a more comfortable and fulfilling life.

Session presented by Amanda include: Physiotherapy and Pelvic Pain





Kathy Caveny

Kathy Caveny
Counsellor/ Advocate

Kathy Caveny is a Counsellor/Advocate for QPASTT based in their Cairns regional office.  QPASTT provide individual and family counselling, as well as therapeutic groups, community and service development. Kathy holds a Masters in Clinical family therapy, Bachelor of Sociology and a Bachelor of Community Development. Kathy has also completed training in EMDR, Narrative Exposure Therapy, Emergent Family Constellations and Trauma play therapy.

 Kathy has worked with refugees and asylum seekers in a community setting for a period of 14 years. During this time Kathy has worked in mental health, refugee health and counselling settings. Kathy is an experienced practitioner in trauma and is able to work with clients in a culturally sensitive and appropriate manner and walk alongside them on their healing and recovery journey. Kathy is also passionate about working in a collaborative manner with her clients and a range of stakeholders to ensure best outcomes for clients.




Dr Sam Olliver headshot

Dr Sam Olliver
Senior Medical Officer at True Relationships

Dr Sam Olliver is a general practitioner with a special interest in sexual and reproductive health, in particular women's health. She works as the Senior Medical Officer of the True Relationship and Reproductive Health Cairns Clinic as well as roles across Queensland health and private telehealth clinic. Sam and the cairns clinic have developed an Endometriosis and Pelvic Pain clinic pathway following receipt of the federal government funding and is keen to share some of their lessons learned along the way.







Danae Owen headshot 

Danae Owen
Program Manager Child and Family Team

Over thirty years experience in clinical psychology with a long career in child protection, and child and adolescent mental health. Demonstrated success in private practice, showcasing expertise in supporting individuals facing diverse challenges. Recently entrusted with a leadership role with the True Child and Family Service to guide therapists addressing the complex needs of children, young people and families impacted by sexual violence. Our families stories of recovery and hope are truly inspiring. Working in a well-resourced space with passionate therapists, all eager to make a difference, is a privilege. And of course, having a great coffee machine adds a great touch to our supportive environment! There is always opportunities to smile, laugh and share not only the tricky parts of our work, but the stories of hope and courage we are lucky enough to bear witness to.

Sponsorship Opportunities & Exhibition Stalls

Interested in being involved in the TrueNorth Conference? Sponsorship and exhibition stall opportunities are available.

Please submit an EOI to be a sponsor or stallholder for our upcoming conference. If you are interested in speaking to us further, please email