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Leading the way – advocating social change

Are you ready to stand up and advocate for social justice? Our people need your voice and action to help improve health outcomes.
My name’s Lynore Geia. I’m from Palm Island in Queensland, North Queensland. And I’m Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander. I’m sort of going to call it growing up as a leader or growing up leaders and just sharing, where it starts, like, things like your leadership starts with your family and your community. That’s really important to have in your life to keep you grounded. It’s part of where you grow your vision from anyway. There’s a lot of young students here who come from strong families or come from communities, and keeping that connection is really important. Some people know that they’re called to be a leader, and there are others that are called to be followers, so we need both.
We need lots of followers to support and back the leaders that are out there with the voice. Don’t be afraid of it. Just keep stepping out. Leadership is about serving– it’s about serving your community. And that’s really important that that’s the forefront, that what you do you do for your community. Then whatever benefits, it flows back to you. So, yeah.

Combating systemic racism and deficit thinking about Australia’s First Peoples starts with awareness and requires a commitment to strategic change.

Organisational Strategies for change

At an organisational level a strategic approach is needed to effect change from within rather than simply an operational approach. Hear more about the difference in these approaches and how strategic change can be achieved by organisations by listening to Professor Gregory Phillips.

Listen to Professor Gregory Phillips talk about organisational strategies

Individual Strategies for change

While the whole health system is responsible for improving First Peoples health, each of us can play our own part in making a difference.

In the video above you have heard Lynore Geia talk about being a leader in the community to serve the community and also the importance of being a follower at times, to support those in leadership roles who are working to implement change.

Consider the following strategies for leading and advocating change in your workplace, suggested in Gorringe, Ross & Fforde (2011, p.11).

  1. Create a safe environment and process for robust discussion.
  2. Challenge mindsets, habits and conversations by:

    • taking responsibility
    • demonstrating courage (name the elephant in the room) and
    • leading by example (be the change you want to see)
  3. Co-create transformative pathways by:

    • engaging with community groups to promote change
    • spreading the word and engaging in a national dialogue

First Peoples knowledges applied for social change

Leading the way for social change among Indigenous and non-Indigenous is Clinton Schultz. An alumni of Griffith University and the winner of the 2018 Outstanding First Peoples Alumnus Award, Clinton is an advocate for change in peoples’ relationships with drugs and alcohol.

Applying Aboriginal philosophies he has seen great results with non-Indigenous people also. Watch this video to be inspired and find out more…

This is an additional video, hosted on YouTube.

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Safer Healthcare for Australia's First Peoples

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