In late June 2018, a Thai soccer team, consisting of 12 boys aged between 11-16 and their 25‑year old coach, entered the Tham Luang Nang Non cave in Chiang Rai province of Thailand. The team were not seen for nine days.

A rescue operation led by the Royal Thai Army was launched with Two British civilian professional cave divers and Western Australia’s very own veterinarian and cave diver, Dr Craig Challen OAM.

The inspirational Dr Craig Challen joined our Convention to share the series of extraordinary events that led to the rescue of the soccer team, and his role in the rescue.

Craig’s description of the events leading to the boys being trapped in the cave and rescue that followed was enthralling.  He described with great humility and humour, the extraordinary planning and effort that went into the operation, culminating in a result that even Craig did not think was possible – the rescue and survival of all of the boys and their coach. 
The lesson from Craig’s remarkable story?  You never know where life will take you and for Craig, he never expected to be rescuing a junior soccer team in Thailand.

Craig mused that, as we all know, things will happen and confront us during our lives  that we will not be expecting or prepared for. While there’s no chance of preparing for specific tests, we can spend our lives preparing for challenges. Craig implores us to improve our resilience, get as much knowledge outside of our areas of expertise and look at issues as opportunities, not threats. His message: Take these opportunities, embrace them and do the best you can. Something we can all take into our everyday lives!