NSW / ACT 2018 Convention – Register Now!


The NSW/ACT State Division of BCA invites you to attend it’s first convention as a newly formed state division. We take time to look at the things that help us live a good life in NSW and the ACT, from tips for everyday living to gadgets and technology that make our lives easier. You will get a chance to share ‘diverse experiences of parenting’ and hear and reminisce about attending camp. You can network during Friday night welcome drinks and Convention dinner. And, if you want to tap into your primal self, come join us in a drumming circle!

Friday 26th – Sunday 28th October 2018

Travelodge Hotel, Newcastle, West NSW

More details…


NSW / ACT 2018 Convention


Aira is pleased to support the state convention by making the venue an Aira Access location for the duration of the event. Find out more below.


Enjoying Our State – Living The Good Life in NSW and the ACT

In our first Convention as a newly formed State Division we take time to look at the things that help us live a good life, from tips for everyday living to gadgets and technology that make our lives easier. You will get a chance to share ‘diverse experiences of parenting’ and hear and reminisce about attending camp. You can network during Friday night welcome drinks and Convention dinner. And, if you want to tap into your primal self, come join us in a drumming circle!


Travelodge Hotel
12 Steel Street
Newcastle West NSW


Friday 26th – Sunday 28th October 2018

Live Stream

If you’re unable to attend the event in person you can tune in LIVE using the following links (please note these links are different to those used in the past):



View the convention program HERE.


Aira Access

Aira is a service for your smartphone that connects you with professionally-trained human agents to assist you with any task. If you are an Aira Explorer at present, using the service at the hotel during the convention will be free, and will not be deducted from your plan.

Even if you’re not using Aira at the moment, if you have a smartphone, you can download the iOS or Android app for free. Use Aira for free for such tasks as finding a hotel room, a conference room, reading a hotel menu, describing exhibit hall tables, description during the conference/workshop sessions, or calling an Uber to get to public transportation.

We advise guests to download the free Aira app prior to the event so you will be ready to take advantage of this opportunity to experience Aira as soon as you arrive.

You can search for Aira in the iOS App Store or Google Play Store. Alternatively, go here: www.aira.io/app. You will find a banner at the top of the app that says “Tap to use Aira as a Guest for Free”. Register with email and phone number on “Sign Up as a Guest”. Then you will get a text message confirming your phone number. Double-tap on the link in the text message and you’ve signed up as a Guest!



Before you register: Make sure you have all of your travel and personal details ready, including those of additional attendees that you are registering for (such as arrival time, preferred format, dietary requirements, emergency contact etc). You can register for more than one person in one booking session.

To register online, click here.
To register over the phone, please call BCA on 1800 033 660 during office hours.

You can register for:

  • Full Convention (Includes Friday night welcome function, Saturday and Sunday standard program sessions, lunch, morning and afternoon tea on Saturday and Sunday, and convention dinner) – $200.00
    (Please Note this option does NOT include the Drum Circle to be held on Saturday afternoon – this must be purchased in addition to your convention registration)
  • Saturday program only (Includes lunch, morning and afternoon tea) – $65
  • Sunday program only (Includes lunch, morning and afternoon tea) – $65
  • Convention Dinner (Saturday evening) – $55
  • Drum Circle (Saturday afternoon) – $20

Raffle tickets can be purchased online in advance or at the convention. You can purchase these along with your registration, or if you are unable to attend the event but still wish to enter the raffle, you can purchase raffle tickets on their own. Prices are:

  • 1 x Raffle Ticket – $2
  • 3 x Raffle Tickets – $5
  • 7 x Raffle Tickets – $10

EFTPOS facilities will also be made available throughout convention.



Accommodation is available at Travelodge Newcastle. Please call the hotel directly to book on (02) 4926 3777.
Advise hotel staff that you are attending the Blind Citizens Australia NSW / ACT Convention to receive the room rate of $165 (Breakfast not included).
You can view the Travelodge website HERE.

Getting There

The closest airport is Newcastle (Williamtown) Airport. It will cost approximately $70 – $100 in a cab from the airport to the hotel.
If you are catching a train, the closest station is Hamilton. It will cost $10 – $20 in a cab to get from the station to the hotel.




Media Release and More BCA 2015 National Convention Information

Dear members

Convention weekend is finally here!

Please find below a media release about Convention issued late yesterday.

If you’re not attending but would like to keep in touch, remember that you can do so in several different ways:

  • Listen to the live stream through Blind Sports Radio. A link will be available on the front page of the BCA website at www.bca.org.au when the stream is active. An email circulating the direct links for different apps and platforms has been circulated to the list.
  • Tune in through the RPH network. Listen to packages and highlights through the two days.
  • Follow us through @au_BCA and the Convention hashtag #BCACONV on Twitter.

There will be two sessions where those not with us in Perth will be able to text through questions for discussion to 0407 308 706. Those sessions are:

  • Saturday 10th October: Celebrating 40 Years of Blind Citizens Australia – 10:40 – 11:40 Western Standard Time
    Panel discussion with Robyn Gaile, Emma Bennison and John Simpson chaired by Bill Jolley.
  • Sunday 11th October: Looking to a Bright Future – 2:55 – 3:55 Western Standard Time
    Panel discussion with Emma Bennison and Leah van Poppel, chaired by Grace King.

I’d also encourage you to start a discussion on bca-l if a topic sparks your interest.

Happy listening, tweeting, emailing and texting everyone!

Kind regards,



8 October 2015

Blind Citizens Australia (BCA), the national peak body for people who are blind or vision impaired, will celebrate its 40th anniversary year in Perth this weekend with a national Convention for members, service providers and the broader community.

“This Convention will highlight the strength of BCA as a voice for people who are blind or vision impaired,” said Greg Madson, BCA President. “We have a long history of fighting successfully for positive changes, like audio signals at traffic lights to make sure everyone can cross roads safely. We’ll be looking back at these successes and thinking of the challenges ahead, such as access to the National Disability Insurance Scheme and the National Broadband Network.”

BCA National Convention, which occurs every second year, is an important way of bringing together people for peer support and vital information. People who are unable to attend will be able to participate by listening to a live internet stream through Blind Sports Radio or through radio by tuning into Radio for the Print Handicapped (RPH) stations.

“We’ve had a great response from both members and service providers,” said Leah van Poppel, BCA Chief Executive Officer. “It’s really important that BCA as an independent voice for people who are blind or vision impaired is supported to stay strong by the agencies who value our feedback on the support they provide in our community. We’re especially pleased to have significant sponsorship from Vision Australia, with supporting sponsorship from Senses Australia.”

BCA National Convention will be held at the Mercure Hotel Perth on 10th and 11th October.

Media contact: Leah van Poppel, Blind Citizens Australia CEO
Mobile: 0430 210 980 Email: leah.van.poppel@bca.org.au

Closing Date Extended – Blind Citizens WA Youth Scholarships 2015

Dear Blind Citizens WA Members,

Blind Citizens WA Inc is proud to offer three scholarships for members under the age of 35 to attend the 2015 Blind Citizens Australia Convention, including the 40th Anniversary Ruby Red Dinner, to be held at the Mercure Hotel Perth, 9 – 11 October 2015. The scholarships are offered in memory of the late Josephine Nicholson.

Each scholarship will cover the cost of registration ($195), with up to $130 per scholarship to help towards transport and/or accommodation costs.

The application closing date has now been extended to Friday 2 October 2015.

To apply, please download and complete the BCWA 2015 Youth Scholarships Application Form (also attached) and return to bcwa@westnet.com.au by 5pm, Friday 2 October 2015.

Successful applicants will be advised by Monday 5 October 2015.

If you have any questions or have any difficulty accessing the application form, please contact Blind Citizens WA President Deanne Ferris via bcwa@westnet.com.au or call 0438 687 768.

For information about the BCA 2015 National Convention visit:

Warm regards,

Deanne Ferris
Blind Citizens WA Inc.
Mobile: 0438 687 768

Seeking Expressions of Interest Provision of Audio Technical Equipment and Services

Blind Citizens Australia (BCA), Australia’s leading national organisation of blind and vision impaired people, is seeking expressions of interest to provide technical equipment and support for its National Convention this year.

This EOI process has closed. Thank you for your interest.