Awabakal Newcastle Aboriginal Co-operative and the Hunter Breast Cancer Foundation have formed a partnership that aims to raise awareness of women’s health in the local Aboriginal community.
For a limited time an exclusive Deadly Choices Breast Cancer jersey will be available for Aboriginal women who visit the Awabakal Aboriginal Primary Health Care Centre (AAPHCC) for a women’s health check.
The initiative is part of Awabakal’s Deadly Choices program which was introduced to the Hunter in August this year and aims to improve Aboriginal health by educating and empowering local Aboriginal people to make healthy choices.
Since the program was introduced the organisation has seen a 630 per cent increase in the number of Aboriginal people undergoing health checks. The success of this program can be placed, in part, on the highly-prized and very exclusive Awabakal Deadly Choices jerseys, which can only be claimed following a health check at the AAPHCC.
Awabakal Chief Executive Officer, Don MacAskill, said that the partnership with the Hunter Breast Cancer Foundation would bring breast cancer and women’s health awareness to the forefront of Aboriginal health.
‘Breast cancer is a serious disease with one in eight women diagnosed nation-wide,” said Don.
“It doesn’t discriminate between the indigenous and non-indigenous populations, which is why partnerships like this are so important in our attempts to tackle chronic disease in the local Aboriginal community.”
Hunter Breast Cancer Foundation President, Rosalie Taggart, said the region would benefit from the additional support of Awabakal and its community to promote health awareness.
“The Awabakal Deadly Choices program is an excellent model that really encourages people to think about their health and take proactive steps,” Rosalie said.
“This is an exciting partnership that we hope will encourage all levels of breast cancer support to work with Awabakal to improve local Aboriginal health.”
The Hunter Breast Cancer Foundation provides grass root support for people undergoing treatment for breast cancer. Since January of this year the Foundation has provided more than 600 post-operative comfort cushions, 178 professional cleaning services and 69 lawn care services. Volunteer drivers have undertaken 338 trips travelling 26,683 kms taking patients to and from treatment appointments.
Pictured | Pink Deadly Choices Reps with, HBCF President, Rosalie Taggart, Awabakal CEO, Don MacAskill, Tim Owen MP AM, Andrew Cornwell MP
Awabakal has provided services to indigenous people living in the Newcastle, Lake Macquarie, Port Stephens and Hunter Valley regions of New South Wales since 1977.
Their services are delivered and predominately managed by professional Aboriginal staff experienced with and sensitive to the needs of the community.