Our processes reflect our commitment to ongoing improvement
As leaders in outdoor education, risk management is at the heart of everything we do; before, during, and after program.
The Outdoor Education Group policies and procedures meet or exceed all external compliance measures for outdoor education (e.g. staff training, ratios, and equipment audits); these are reviewed on an ongoing basis, with annual audits to ensure The Outdoor Education Group continues to improve our systems and practices in the field. The Outdoor Education Group’s emergency planning and critical incident response strive to cover all predictable and known outdoor education hazards in the Australian environment, ensuring all staff are well equipped and prepared.
The Outdoor Education Group’s risk management components strategies are:
- Communication and Consultation
- Establishing Context
- Risk Identification
- Risk Analysis
- Risk Evaluation
- Risk Treatment
- Monitoring and Review
- Incident data collection and review
RISK ASSESSMENT, REPORTING AND ANALYSIS
Each of our programs has a specific risk assessment, evaluation, and treatment plan applied; this is known as The Outdoor Education Group Hazard Identification and Risk Assessment (HIRA). The HIRA identifies and analyses hazards specific to each program, such as venue, time of year, specific activities, environmental hazards, and the group’s particular medical conditions and dietary requirements. Possible hazards define the actions required for mitigation within The Outdoor Education Group’s and client’s risk tolerance.
The Outdoor Education Group is data-driven when it comes to incident reporting, analysis and prevention. We utilise the state-of-the-art Understanding and Preventing Led Outdoor Accidents Data System (UPLOADS) incident reporting system. UPLOADS is an industry-specific and specially built system developed by The University of the Sunshine Coast and industry leaders (including The Outdoor Education Group) to apply systems-based understanding to incident data capture and analysis. Our incident data informs internal pre-program systems, field policy updates, and training requirements.
RISK MANAGEMENT PRINCIPLES
As the largest outdoor education provider in the southern hemisphere, our standards align with the Australian Adventure Activity Standards. We are the first Australian organisation to receive international accreditation from the Association of Experiential Education, reflecting over 36 years of industry-leading experience.
We take a systems-based approach to managing risk and work to imbed best practices at each step of program preparation, delivery, and review.
Each and every program involves detailed components of both our proactive and reactive strategies. As required by law, The Outdoor Education Group implements processes and systems which endeavour to ensure, as far as reasonably practicable, the safety of all staff, participants, and others who are associated with our programs.
PROGRAM AND ENVIRONMENTAL MONITORING
While on program, The Outdoor Education Group has specific measures in place to manage environmental hazards relevant to each location and season. These include monitoring weather patterns prior to and during programs, daily communication with program staff, communication of weather warnings, air quality and relevant health department alerts. These tasks are fulfilled by on-the-ground staff and a dedicated on-call facility – Field Duty Manager.
A defined bushfire procedure is enacted during bushfire season if the Fire Danger Rating (FDR) reaches pre-determined points for the specific weather region. While we realise these measures may, and, in the event of Severe or Extreme FDR will, have a considerable impact on the program design, we feel they are warranted to maintain the highest regard for participant and staff safety. On days of Total Fire Ban, groups will act according to the law and not use stoves for cooking. Our dedicated catering team ensures groups have meals designed for fire season and can be eaten hot or cold.
OEG's Child Safety Approach
The Outdoor Education Group’s child safety approach is designed to align seamlessly with the National Child Safe Standards and relevant legislation. This comprehensive strategy encompasses a range of measures to protect the security and wellbeing of children engaged in our programs.
Our 8 point child safety strategy aims to protect children and ensure a safe environment through:
1. Effective supervision, support and adult-child ratios on outdoor programs.
2. Organisational understanding of child safety issues, which includes inclusivity and respect toward the diversity of children and families.
3. An understanding and commitment to our Child Safe Code of Conduct, and Safety & Wellbeing Policy.
4. Clear guidelines to report and document suspicions for concerns of child abuse.
5. Effective recruitment practices and policies for all staff, volunteers and contractors engaged with child-related employment. This includes working with children and police checks, as well as ongoing training.
6. Partnerships with parents and carers to ensure they are well informed about our policies and procedures on child safety.
7. Nurturing a child safe culture where everyone takes responsibility and is prepared to act.
8. Continuous improvement to assess the efficacy of our child safe measures.
These measures make sure that The Outdoor Education Group creates a secure environment, prioritising children’s wellbeing, while delivering transformative outdoor experiences in line with our commitment to the highest standards of child safety.
Download our Child Safety Code of Conduct and Child Safe & Wellbeing PolicyCode of Conduct Policy Child Safe & Wellbeing Policy
At The Outdoor Education Group, we take pride in delivering quality, life-changing outdoor education experiences to young Australians in a safe and fully supported environment, focusing on risk management. Our extensive COVIDSafe practices ensure we are delivering a safe experience for all.
These practices include:
- Dedicated COVIDSafe training for our team
- COVID-19 participant declarations
- Hand sanitisation stations and kits as standard
- Extensive cleaning of our facilities and equipment
HOW WE WORK
Our expert Outdoor Educators facilitate powerful learning experiences and our approach reflects the principles The Outdoor Education Group was built on more than 36 years ago.Find out more
ONGOING CARE AND SUPPORT
“During programs, The Outdoor Education Group have a high quality of care for students and school staff. OEG staff are aware of the needs of students, well informed about the program details, and take students and school staff through the process with clear communication to ensure all participants are adequately prepared for each activity and stage of a trip.
The Outdoor Education Group staff regularly check in with their supervisors and with school staff to ensure program needs are met and student concerns are being monitored and addressed where needed.”