Members of the EACH Ngarrang Gulinj-al Boordup – Aboriginal Health and Wellbeing Team recently delivered care packages to Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander women who engage with our Integrated Team Care program (ITC) that supports indigenous people with chronic health conditions.
Earlier this year, Cathy and Vanessa from the Team developed a women’s activities group: Deadly Yarning, to support local indigenous women with mental health concerns and general wellbeing. The group was planned to launch in April 2020 but is now on hold due to the outbreak of COVID-19.
With Victorians recently going into Stage 4 restrictions, and with the Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander community at higher risk, the Team decided to design care packages to support women of the ITC program, through this period.
The care packages include cultural elements, making them unique and meaningful to the women, with Vanessa basing their design on the five senses to illustrate the connection between wellbeing, bodily function and self-care.
The care packages include:
- clap sticks for hearing;
- plant-based medicinal balm;
- indigenous sensual oils for skin irritations like eczema or psoriasis;
- Old Man Weed & Lemon Myrtle oils;
- roll-on perfume;
- indigenous themed mindfulness colouring images
- an arrangement of craft materials;
- Lemon Myrtle herbs and recipes.
A small canvas is also included. The Team has set a challenge for the women to paint something that represents ‘their story’ or their experience of the COVID-19 pandemic. We are looking forward to seeing the wonderful artworks produced, and when it is safe to do so, will collect them to share with the community.
Our hope is that the care packages will not only support the group culturally but will also aide their mental health as well as nurture their spiritual and physical wellbeing.
The Team encourage the Community to continue to connect with culture and country through this period, as it will help with feeling connected, self-expression, emotions and their relationship with country, as well as healing.
The Ngarrang Gulinj-al Boordup Team are committed to supporting the group and are working on new initiatives to provide health and wellbeing services for the Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander community across the Eastern region of Melbourne.
Learn more about our Ngarrang Gulinj-al Boordup – Aboriginal Health and Wellbeing Team by visiting https://www.each.com.au/service/aboriginal-health-wellbeing/.