Surrogacy Australia is excited to be hosting a full day conference devoted to Australian surrogacy and egg donation.

An attractive accommodation discount is available with Rendezvous Hotel in Flinders St (Save up to $110 across two nights). A discount code will be provided with your emailed ticket

When: 9:00 am – 4:00 pm Sunday 2 June 2019

Venue: Victoria University Convention Centre, L12, 300 Flinders St Melbourne


  • Intended Parents & family members (early bird): $100
  • Surrogates & donors: $60
  • Professionals: $220

Ticket price includes conference satchel, morning tea, lunch & afternoon tea

Time Scheduled events Speaker
9:00 am Registration
9:20 am Navigating domestic surrogacy Who is eligible? What are the steps at the IVF clinic? What are the expected timings? What about costs and rebates? Who is eligible? What are the steps at the IVF clinic? What are the expected timings? What about costs and rebates? Sam Everingham, Surrogacy Australia
9:40 am Understanding the legal issues What are surrogacy agreements? Who writes them? Are they legally binding? What surrogate expenses are allowed? How does transfer of parentage work? What legal rights do Intended parents, donors and surrogates have? Ben Sayer, Sayer Jones
10:00 am Finding and engaging with Australian surrogates Learn about the offline Surrogacy Australia Support Service (SASS), etiquette around online forums, the do’s and don’ts of surrogate engagement and how you can raise the topic with your own networks to maximise the chances of finding a surrogate Anna McKie, Surrogacy Australia
10:30am Surrogate-friendly IVF procedures Understand the impact of medicated vs natural cycles on your donor, surrogate and embryo numbers. Understand the latest advances in embryo creation and transfer which can enhance succcess from Australia’s most popular clinic for domestic surrogacy Dr Glenn Sterling, Life Fertility
10:50 am MORNING TEA
11:20 am Australian parent panel In-depth discussion and Q&A with parents who have completed a surrogacy journey in Australia covering topics such as what to expect (processes and costs), what can go wrong and how to survive the unexpected hurdles in Australia Lisa Leggett, Mike Collins & Michael Langtree
12:20 pm The surrogate perspective What do surrogates look for? How can you best meet their support needs? What defines a good and bad surrogacy journey? Simone Cureton, Marnie Blair, Amanda Meehan
2:10 pm Room one Egg donor experiences Amber Russell et al
Room two Q&A on domestic surrogacy TBA
2:30 pm Room one Men in the middle – Supporting the emotional needs of men in surrogacy journeys TBA
Room two Birth plans –  the things  surrogacy teams can consider to ensure their surrogate is well supported during pregnancy and birth, including birth photography, Birth plans, doula support Bree Downes
2:50 pm The counselling process Relationships between surrogate, her partner and the intended parent are a key to success. Building relationships; what counselling should cover; what the counsellor is looking for; preparing yourself; potential impact on family members; potential red flags; resolving disputes. Moderator: Kate Bourne Panelists: Katrina Hale, Rita Alesi
3:35 pm Hearing from young adults via Australian egg donation and surrogacy
4:00 pm Close




Ben Sayer Admitted to practice in the High Court and the Supreme Court of Victoria, Ben is a member of the Law Institute Of Victoria. He has advocated extensively in Family Law and has represented clients in relation to domestic altruistic surrogacy for over a decade.  He has advised extensively on domestic and international Adoption and Surrogacy, and takes a personal interest in this unique and specialised area of law.
Dr Glenn Sterling, Life Fertility Dr Glenn Sterling is the founding director and owner of Life Fertility Clinic located within the campus of St Andrew’s Hospital, Spring Hill, Brisbane.  Subsequent to completing his initial medical studies in Queensland, Glenn elected to undertake specialised studies in reproductive technologies including IVF in England under the supervision of Profession Ian Craft of Harley Street, London. This invaluable knowledge and training has underpinned the excellence in treatment services offered by Glenn and his team at Life Fertility Clinic. Glenn has personally sourced the expert staff necessary to offer the highest quality assisted reproductive technology treatments to Life Fertility Clinic patients.
Sam Everingham

President, Surrogacy Australia

Sam is dad to two girls Zoe & Ruby via surrogacy and has become one of the globe’s foremost commentators and researchers on surrogacy trends. He convenes conferences and seminars for intended parents in Ireland, UK, Australia and Scandinavia. Sam consults with singles and couples from around the globe to assist them to plan safe and reliable routes to building families through surrogacy. He continues to promote best practice through advocacy, education and research. He founded Surrogacy Australia in 2011 and sits on an advisory group for the Victorian Assisted Reproduction Treatment Authority.
Anna McKie, Surrogacy Australia Anna is a school teacher and is closely involved the Australian surrogacy community.  Anna is currently matched as a surrogate with a South Australian couple and leads Surrogacy Australia’s new Support Service
Rita Alesi

Monash IVF

Rita has 25 years experience as a psychologist and 22 years experience working in IVF settings. She is the Manager of Monash IVF Counselling Services. Rita maintains a special interest in female and male reproductive health and reproductive grief and loss. Currently primarily involved in providing counselling and assessment for surrogacy and  complex donor cases for local and overseas recipients. She is a member of Fertility Society of Australia, Australian New Zealand Infertility Counsellors Association, Australian Psychological Society, the APS and the College of Counselling Psychologists
Katrina Hale Katrina is a Sydney-based Psychologist and Infertility Counsellor with over 20 years counselling experience. She is passionate about surrogacy and a strong supporter of all walks of the community that wish to create a family through surrogacy. She is committed to helping Intending Parents and Surrogates and their partners successfully navigate their surrogacy journey together.
Kate Bourne


Kate has worked as an infertility counsellor for twenty years and is the chair of the ANZ Infertility Counsellors Association. Senior Community Education Officer at the Victorian Assisted Reproductive Treatment Authority, Kate has a keen interest in helping parents through surrogacy feel comfortable sharing their stories with their children. She runs an annual ‘Time to Tell’ seminar in Melbourne and has written’ Sometimes it Takes Three to Make a Baby’ explaining egg donation to children.
Bree Downes


Bree is a mother of three, a birth doula and birth photographer. She  supports pregnant and labouring women in their journey to motherhood.  Bree is passionate about holistic pre-natal preparation for all new mothers to be, and has a special interest in VBAC, having experienced and achieved it herself. Her aim is to provide women with the wisdom, information and power that she wishes she had for her own pregnancies.
Simone Cureton Simone has one daughter who is  13 years old and a step daughter who is 11. Simone had one false start in trying to meet IPs and because of that experience decided to look locally. Her  IPs, Mel and Dave, are in Adelaide. Coincidentally they  joined the SA group around the same time in April 2017 and began chatting end of June 2017. They attended a local catch up dinner in July 2017 and met in person – it was like meeting people she had known  a while. Mel and Simone decided to have lunch. Very soon after that, Simone officially offered. She birthed in December 2018
Marnie Blair Marnie is a gestational surrogate living with her husband and two young children in North-West Sydney. Before engaging IPs, She and her husband sought counselling from a well regarded surrogacy counsellor.  In February 2017 she met her Canberra based IPs through the Australian Surrogacy Community Facebook page. She birthed her first surrogate baby in August 2018.
Amanda Meehan Amanda is a 30 year old mum to four kids of her own and lives in South-east Melbourne. She used her own eggs in a traditional surrogacy arrangement for a same sex Victorian couple and gave birth in March 2018. She will talk about the experience and the headspace involved in traditional surrogacy as well as post birth emotions.
Carla Pincombe Carla became an egg donor early in 2013 after finishing breast feeding her youngest child. Since then she has donated to more than nine recipients – four have had babies and three are currently pregnant. Two of her recipient couples have required a surrogate. Carla is passionate about known donation, and all of her recipients know each other. Like other Australian donors, Carla also became a surrogate,  completing a Traditional arrangement in Victoria in March 2017. She is a moderator with Egg Donation Australia
Mike Collins Mike and Glenn’s surrogacy journey saw them look at options around the world before finding a surrogate and egg donor locally. Their daughter Annabelle was born in May 2018. Glenn and Mike actively support the surrogacy community running a Facebook page for gay intended parents.
Lisa Leggett From the first FTS event Henry & Lisa Leggett attended three years ago, it was clear they were determined to make surrogacy work for them. Their support for the Australian Surrogacy Community and their shared journey with their surrogate Emmy Gwynne has been an inspiration to many. For the first time Henry will talk about their journey, from sourcing donor eggs from their best friend Kate King to matching with a local surrogate, to pregnancy attempts, to supporting Emmy’s needs and their own through the emotional landscape of surrogacy
Michael Langtree Michael & Terry started their surrogacy journey in 2011 when conversations with friends evolved into offers to help them start their family. They now have 4 year old daughter named Harper and a second daughter   Both feel blessed to have been given such wonderful gifts from the two women who have made possible the birth of our daughters. They were fortunate to have their children through domestic surrogacy and will talk about their journey