THE HON WARREN SNOWDON MP
Minister for Indigenous Health
Member for Lingiari
11 July 2011
The Minister for Indigenous Health, Warren Snowdon, said hundreds of Northern Territory kids will take part in a three-year promotion – culminating each year in the Top End’s largest ever basketball tournament – to encourage better health among Aboriginal people.
Mr Snowdon announced the Hoops 4 Health Challenge is one of 12 new community-based projects in the NT being funded under the Australian Government’s new Live Longer! health campaign. The total funding for these 12 projects in the NT is $4.4 million.
“Live Longer! is a ground breaking, grassroots program to encourage better health among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.
“It’s a call to action – to quit smoking, eat healthy, exercise more, drink more water and look after your health – are all important factors in reducing chronic disease.
“This is an exciting program – innovative, responsive to need, and culturally and practically appropriate and effective. All projects have been developed by the local community, for the local community.
“They include hands-on cooking classes; workshops on nutrition, safe food preparation, exercise and quitting smoking; storytelling – both traditional and through film and online; collecting and hunting of traditional bush tucker; walks and camping,” Mr Snowdon said.
The Hoops 4 Health Challenge aims to raise awareness of the lack of understanding of risk factors that contribute to chronic disease, which is two and a half times more prevalent in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians than in non-Indigenous Australians.
Mr Snowdon said the three-year project will involve healthy living promotions in remote communities and schools throughout the Top End, with basketball as the theme, culminating with the tournament challenge in Darwin each year. A promotional vehicle, funded as part of the project, will be used to take the health message to these areas.
“The research tells us that to get Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people involved and engaged in programs that manage and promote health and wellbeing, they themselves need to be the drivers, developers and story-tellers of health messages.
“This is what Live Longer! is about – promoting through projects like these the health priorities and needs that have been identified by the community itself, as well as better informing people how they can access local primary care,” he said.
For more information please contact Mr Snowdon’s office (02) 6277 7820
The 12 NT projects and grant recipients under Live Longer! are –
- Charles Darwin University and Yalu Marnggithinyaraw’s ‘Sharing the Full and True Story About Chronic Disease’ project – a community education project that targets Aboriginal people in North East Arnhem Land, in particular those in the Galiwin’ku homelands. The project aims to revive positive traditional knowledge and practices related to health whilst also improving access to Western health information. Using community workshops and education sessions, and resources translated into the traditional Yolgnu language. The project will promote informed decision-making, lifestyle changes and the use of health services.
- Gap Youth Centre Aboriginal Corporation’s ‘GYC 4 Lyfe Campaign’ – this project targets both permanent residents of Alice Springs and people living in town camps, with a key aim of encouraging the use of health services. The project has four main elements: Active, Food, Culture and Media. As part of the project, the GYC gym will be upgraded and promoted, healthy cooking activities will be run in a renovated kitchen, cultural activities including ‘Storywalks’ and ‘Yarn sessions’ will be used to encourage chronic diseases prevention, and local media organisations will be involved in documenting and promoting the activities and messages about healthy lifestyles.
- Hoops 4 Health Aboriginal Corporation’s ‘Hoops 4 Health Challenge’ aims to raise awareness of the lack of understanding of risk factors that contribute to chronic disease through a series of ‘Live Longer’ basketball challenges in remote communities leading up to a major basketball tournament to be held in Darwin. The tournament will invite schools from all over the NT and promote physical activity, having health checks, drinking water and healthy eating as important factors in reducing chronic disease. This will be reinforced by radio advertising.
- Laynhapuy Homelands Association’s ‘Manymak Yolnu Natha’ project aims to re-establish and support traditional hunting and gathering groups in eight major Yolngu Homeland communities in East Arnhemland to encourage and reinforce traditional healthy lifestyle choices and behaviour. Technology and traditional storytelling will come together in documenting the activities through photography and film. Close consultation with communities will help refine activities and the resulting films will be presented to communities at film nights.
- Red Dust Role Models’ ‘Red Dust Healthy Living Week’s will provide a series of targeted workshops with primary and secondary school children in a number of remote Indigenous communities in the NT. The topics covered will include nutrition, physical activity and smoking cessation, and activities will include an excursion to a medical clinic, t-shirt and poster design competitions, and a competition to produce a short film. Training packages will be developed and community members will have the chance to become local champions and be trained to undertake ongoing activities.
- Skinnyfish Music’s ‘Themed Digital Health Stories Project’ aims to involve young people aged 12-18 in creating a series of themed digital stories (three to five minutes in length) from each seven remote NT communities. The digital stories will be developed around the themes of nutrition, physical activity, smoking, health checks and chronic disease issues. The stories will then be uploaded to the internet to be shared.
- The Tiwi Education Board’s ‘Taste It, Do It, Live It’ project will engage Tiwi Islanders to improve their diets, exercise more and access primary health care. The main focus of the activity is the training of Tiwi College students in safe and nutritious food preparation and service, the collection and hunting of traditional bush tucker, and learning health assessment skills. This campaign will extend to the broader community through holistic health days and will be supported by promotional messages from the Essendon Football Club and local Tiwi Bombers team.
- Waltja Tjutangku Palyapayi’s ‘Healthy Community Healthy Life’ project aims to encourage physical activity, good nutrition and the importance of regular health checks, whilst facilitating the retention and transfer of traditional and contemporary systems of knowledge about good health practices between community elders and younger generations in Western Desert communities. This project constitutes a series of community walks, culminating in members of all communities undertaking a long walk, a week of camping and walking following traditional Tjukurrpa routes. In addition to providing participants with the necessary gear to undertake these activities, the project will deliver healthy community cook ups, recipe books and kitchen cooks.
- Western Desert Nganampa Walytja Palyantjaku Tjutaku Aboriginal Corporation’s ‘PALYA! Project’ will provide holistic care and education, working with people to keep active and engaged. It focuses on issues relating to nutrition and hydration to both prevent and manage chronic disease. Activities are based at Purple House in Alice Springs and will include healthy food preparation (in a renovated kitchen) and nutrition advice, local language resources, exercise sessions, bush trips and art activities.
- Wurli-Wurlingjang Health Service’s ‘Katherine StrongBala Good Tucker Program’ will provide hands-on cooking classes in the StrongBala kitchen, horticulture training in the Health Service’s community garden and training in the collection and preparation of traditional bush tucker. The project will then bring these together with information sharing about the risks and implications of chronic disease. Targeting particular at risk groups, the program will deliver sustainable health outcomes for men experiencing homelessness in the Katherine area.
- Alice Springs based Imparja Television also received funding. The ‘Yamba’s Playtime’ project will extend the reach of an existing healthy living roadshow to selected remote communities, within Imparja Television’s broadcast footprint in Queensland. The roadshow and linked activity will feature Yamba the Honey Ant and aims to reach Indigenous pre-school age children and their parents and carers with important messages about healthy living. There will also be a roadshow including a 30 minute Yamba’s Show.
- Uncle Jimmy Thumbs Up! Limited’s ‘Good Tucker Long Life’ program will work with schools, traditional owners, local stores, men’s and women’s groups and other community members and groups to encourage healthy eating. Activities will include providing store signage indicating healthy foods, healthy recipe promotions, nutrition education and health lifestyle workshops for children, and a media campaign including targeted editorial and new media strategies.
(Note: Uncle Jimmy project will be run across 10 communities, of which six are in the NT).