Slide outline: Supporting the social and emotional wellbeing of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children through a collaborative community approach

1. Supporting the social and emotional wellbeing of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children through a collaborative community approach
Daniel Moss, Bill Wilson, Dana Shen and Ruth Tulloch
CFCA Webinar 9 July 2019


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3. Individual practice

Relationship and rapport

  • a time investment

Time poor = relationship poor

4. Stories and experiences

Consultation/ Engagement

  • Authentic
  • Individuals and partnerships with Aboriginal Organisations

Importance of words and actions

  • congruent

5. Practitioner/ Organisational considerations

Best practice principles

  • Relational and spiritual/ cultural beings
  • Best outcomes arise when service providers tap into both of these elements

6. Practitioner/ Organisational considerations part 2

Assessment tools

Allow story to be heard

Don’t rush into ‘problem solve’


Allow client/ family to develop their own solutions

7. Practitioner/ Organisational considerations part 3

Every client engagement is an opportunity

Clients vote with their feet


Importance of word of mouth

Synergy and energy

8. Investment in Relationships

The obstacle of expertise

Getting to know & learn- deep listening

Who are you?

9. Being uncomfortable

What is about you & what is about the system

What are you learning?

Understanding & acknowledgement

10. Making a stand & advocating

Working with Aboriginal Communities can be political and contested

Advocating in work and out of work

Who is your guide?

11. Pain, hope & celebration

There are many hurts

The privilege of working with Aboriginal communities

The wonder & the greatness…if you take the time

12. Uniting Communities – Aboriginal Community Connect


We acknowledge that this land we meet on today is the traditional lands for the Kaurna people and that we respect their spiritual relationship with their country. We also acknowledge the Kaurna people as the custodians of the greater Adelaide region and that their cultural and heritage beliefs are still as important to the living Kaurna people today.  We pay respect to Elders both past and present.  We recognise that the Aboriginal youth are the future generation to carry on Aboriginal Leaders Legacies. We acknowledge all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people Australia wide.

13. Program Learnings and reflections

Learnings and reflections from a Non-Aboriginal Manager working alongside Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal workforce in developing and implementing an Aboriginal specific service within a mainstream context

  • The importance of relationship and trust building with Elders and community members.
  • Co-design and community led approaches is essential in having cultural authenticity within your services.
  • Bringing your organization along the learning journey with you.
  • Working in partnership with Aboriginal controlled organizations.

14. Program Learnings and reflections 2

Finding the Balance between Cultural and Clinical Practice.

  • Making sure that cultural practices are valued and considered as much as clinical practice.
  • Developing Aboriginal specific Leadership roles to provide cultural support and supervision. Changing staff recruitment practices.
  • Being prepared to challenge and change mainstream service models.
  • Understanding the diversity within Aboriginal communities and recognizing the diverse range of needs.

15. Program Learnings and reflections 3

  • My learnings as a Non-Aboriginal Manager working alongside Aboriginal staff, community members, organizations whilst working in a mainstream environment.
  • Community engagement is essential in gaining credibility within your services.
  • Processes may take longer due to relationship building needed.
  • Reflect and analyze your own values when working with diverse groups.
  • Acknowledge your mistakes, learn from them and improve practices.
  • Be a facilitator in creating opportunities for Aboriginal workforce to advocate for their own needs.
  • Be prepared to advocate to your own organization about the needs of your services and staff.
  • Working and monitoring that client work practices have embedded in them clinical and cultural practices.

16. Continue the conversation

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