09 July 2012
Indigenous health worker program helps Sandra chase her dreams
John Pearson Consulting celebrated the achievements of a group of students involved in the highly successful Health Workers for Healthy Communities project.
As National NAIDOC Week celebrations occurred throughout Australia, John Pearson Consulting celebrated the achievements of a group of students involved in the highly successful Health Workers for Healthy Communities project.
John Pearson Consulting General Manager Tim Robson said the Australian Government funded program developed to address skill shortages was responsible for an even greater impact in Indigenous communities.
"This training program was created because of the recognised need for qualified Indigenous workers to fill vacancies in the health services industry," Mr Robson said.
"It was developed to help provide a real solution and empower these communities."
According to recent graduate Sandra Hazard, the course has done just that.
"When I enrolled in this program I wasn't employed, but I'm now an Aboriginal Health Worker at the Cunnamulla Aboriginal Corporation for Health," Ms Hazard said.
"I applied for this job during my studies and was successful because of the Certificate IV qualifications I was studying in both Primary Health and Mental Health.
"I have been in the job for nearly eight months and am loving it."
The success of the twelve month program, delivered in partnership with Sunshine Coast TAFE, is largely due to ensuring the training was attuned to the cultural needs of the students.
Ms Hazard said this was a critical element of the studies for herself and her classmates.
"We had aboriginal teachers who were more understanding of our background and culture and this was really important to a lot of the students in the class," she said.
Nothing is holding this highly motivated individual back either, being given her first solo project which commences this month.
"I'm trialling an eight week program called Deadly Young Boys which has been designed for 5-13 year old boys," she said.
"It will focus on nutrition, bullying, being sun smart, dental health and personal hygiene.
"The program will be run from our medical centre and I have arranged for other services to come on board for each individual session.
"We will have guest lectures from both a nutritionist and dentist, for example, and during the nutrition session we will all make fruit salad.
"I designed this program to target the younger kids to keep them occupied and have something to look forward to coming to each week."
Mr Robson said the success of this program was due to its meticulous planning and assessment being conducted during lesson delivery times.
"Each of the partners involved in this project were integral in ensuring its success through careful planning, an understanding of the relevant issues and the employment of dedicated teachers to support the students," he said.
"We have issued 148 qualifications to our students with many of them either gaining employment or upskilling in the workplace as a result of this program."
However the last words do belong to Sandra who said she would thoroughly recommend this program.
"It's such a great course and good qualification to help the people in your community," she said.
"Just chase your dreams."
For further information on training opportunities available through John Pearson Consulting please call (07) 5313 8600 or visit www.jpearson.com.au