We’ve done this a number of times over the last decade, from OSDC to LCA. The idea is to provide a free psychologist or counsellor at an in-person conference. Attendees can do an anonymous booking by taking a stickynote (with the timeslot) from a signup sheet, and thus get a free appointment.
Many people find it difficult taking the first (very important) step towards getting professional help, and we’ve received good feedback that this approach indeed assists.
So far we’ve always focused on open source conferences. Now we’re moving into information security! First BrisSEC 2022 (Friday 29 April at the Hilton in Brisbane, QLD) and then AusCERT 2022 (10-13 May at the Star Hotel, Gold Coast QLD). The awesome and geek friendly Dr Carla Rogers will be at both events.
How does this get funded? Well, we’ve crowdfunded some, nudged sponsors, most mostly it gets picked up by the conference organisers (aka indirectly by the sponsors, mostly).
If you’re a conference organiser, or would like a particular upcoming conference to offer this service, do drop us a line and we’re happy to chase it up for you and help the organisers to make it happen. We know how to run that now.
In-person is best. But for virtual conferences, sure contact us as well.