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Hi there and welcome to the 2006 APEN International Conference. On behalf of the Conference Committee it is an absolute pleasure inviting you to what we hope is a stimulating and worthwhile interaction over the next few days.

Our intent for this conference is to genuinely explore the theme "Practice change for sustainable communities: Exploring footprints, pathways and possibilities”, and the streams that have emerged from the abstracts submitted by you as delegates that make explicit the various facets of our work.

We have endeavoured to practice our conference values, to guide our behaviour and decision making, both as a committee and in creating a conference experience for all participants. As a result we hope you experience the values of integrity, community, sustainability, pushing the edge and integration during this conference.

The Conference Committee has worked tirelessly towards an excellent conference program. We had an overwhelming response with high quality paper submissions. As with all conferences we had difficult decisions to make in balancing the number of spaces for potential paper presentations and taking a few risks with opportunities for greater integration.

A big thankyou to all those wonderful people that made up the committee. To all involved in the initial ideas, the virtual reference group, our sponsors, Happenings Australia, The Regional Institute and to you, as participants, thanks for being a part of a great opportunity to co-create!

To the APEN Management Committee, thankyou for the opportunity to take this on. We look forward to sharing our learnings and handing over the baton to the next committee.

We hope that this conference gathering will push our thinking and practice and positively contribute to new footprints, pathways and possibilities that result in the sustainability of what it is we truly cherish in our many communities and beyond..

Ms Jo Vigliaturo

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