Awareness vital for better health

Black and white lunch: Deanna Schreiber, Elizabeth Homer and Barbara Simms-Keeley at the Kurranulla reconciliation lunch. Picture: Jane Dyson
Black and white lunch: Deanna Schreiber, Elizabeth Homer and Barbara Simms-Keeley at the Kurranulla reconciliation lunch. Picture: Jane Dyson

THE annual Mother's Day lunch at Kurranulla Aboriginal Corporation provided the perfect opportunity for 60 mums, grandmothers, great grandmothers, aunties and carers to gather for a natter.

Aunty Deanna Schreiber said she was thrilled with the turn-out at the non-funded, non-profit centre.

The theme was "black and white" as a nod to the upcoming Reconciliation Week (May 27-June 3).

Mrs Schreiber said Kurranulla members took part in regular reconciliation talks with Sutherland Shire Citizens for Native Title and Reconciliation (SSCNTaR).

"I think the biggest issues [in the community] are misunderstanding and lack of cultural awareness," Mrs Schrieber said.

"They don't learn about other people's culture and they don't come together," Mrs Schreiber said.

Kurranulla manager Tracie Ballingall agreed that a lack of cultural awareness was a big barrier.

"In my role [I see] a need for more cultural awareness among services such as health and legal services," she said.

"That can be a real barrier for seeking help.

"If they've got a lack of awareness [indigenous people] are less likely to seek these essential services.

"You can go to a doctor in Sutherland Shire and they won't even ask if you're Aboriginal."

Ms Ballingall praised the implementation of a new Medicare scheme that will train four Aboriginal workers who will set up cultural awareness training for GPs.

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