2024 March – News and Updates

2023 December – News and updates
January 17, 2024

2024 March – News and Updates

Mayi Kuwayu participant hits the jackpot!

At the start of our Study, we had promised to give away an iPad to a lucky survey participant. A few weeks ago, we drew a name from a very large pool of survey participants from the first wave. We are excited to share that Andrew Yooren from Victoria is the winner of the giveaway and will be receiving an iPad!
Congratulations, Andrew and thank you for sharing your story with us.

We are planning to do this giveaway again towards the end of this year. To participate in the draw all you need to do is share your story with us. Do a survey today and you might find yourself winning an iPad in the near future.

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From Community Researcher to Epidemiologist 

Mayi Kuwayu Community Researcher Nadine Hunt is all set to embark on a new journey.

Nadine is an Iamalaig and Kaantju woman from Far North Queensland, Coen in Cape York and the Kulkalgal Nation, Central Islands of the Torres Straits. She has been a Community Researcher, and more recently, a Coordinator for the Study. She coordinates community-based recruitment for the Study throughout Far North Queensland. She has also spent the past 18 months working alongside the Yarrabah community assisting in embedding their data systems and processes for their community development agenda through the Yarrabah Counts project.

In her spare time, Nadine is a superstar athlete. She enjoys keeping active and competes in triathlons. She recently competed in the IRONMAN World Championships, becoming the first First Nations woman to do so. She also volunteers as a running coach in Cairns.

Having been involced at community grassroots level her whole life, she is now taking her experience and expertise to the classroom as she begins her study with the Australian National University in the Master of Applied Epidemiologist (MAE) course.

“The MAE is a scary big step that I’m excited about. It will allow me to continue working this way and in a space I am passionate about.”

Nadine will be working with Ray Lovett, Katie Thurber and other members of our team as she finds her way through this exciting journey. We are very keen to see Nadine grow as an academic researcher and will be cheering for her all the way to graduation day.

Good luck, Nadine!

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Community partner spotlight – Carbal Medical Services 

The success and the outcome of the Mayi Kuwayu Study relies on gathering a broad range of data. The more people who fill out the survey, the more people we connect with, the better the scope for producing holistic data that can positively influence health and wellbeing for our communities. Community partner organisations play an important role in helping us reach remote and regional communities. Carbal Medical Services is one such proud partner of the Mayi Kuwayu Study.

Carbal Medical Services is an Aboriginal Medical Service operating in Darling and Southern Downs regions. Their extensive health provision encompasses two general practice clinics, 27 health outreach programs, dental services, NDIS support, and medical accommodation. They are dedicated to consistently enhancing healthcare initiatives to better address the unique requirements of the local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community.

Carbal’s active participation and support of the Mayi Kuwayu Study reflect their commitment to inform health policy through evidence-based findings. Guidance from the Mayi Kuwayu survey helps improve their services to address and overcome the health challenges of their community more accurately. Like our Study, Carbal embodies a healthcare philosophy steered by community input and stakeholder collaboration.

Like Carbal Medical Services, our study often partners with community organisations. Please get in touch if you would like your organisation to be involved in the study – mkstudy@anu.edu.au

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Advancing Indigenous data empowerment 

Mayi Kuwayu Study Director Ray Lovett will be placed at Harvard University for four months as a Fulbright scholar to build international Indigenous data collaborations.

Key data that matters to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, such as our Connection to Country, our culture, our language and our ways of living that affect our wellbeing, are excluded from state measurement processes (like health and wellbeing surveys). This lack of data prevents the creation of effective policies that centre mob and improve health and wellbeing.

The Mayi Kuwayu Study has created a wealth of knowledge about how to create data of importance to Indigenous peoples in Australia and now these processes will be shared with Indigenous colleagues from the United States. A network will be created so that there can be cultural and educational exchange between mobs in the US and in Australia.

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New member on board 

In the past month, we have welcomed a new member to our team.

Dr Chris McKay is a Koori man who grew up on Dharawal Country in Wollongong NSW. He has recently completed his PhD under the supervision of Noongar doctor and Professor Sandra Eades. He has been a supporter of our Study long before he joined the team.

“I admire the way this Study has been designed with community ownership and priorities. I have been seeing the important findings that have come out of it, so it’s a real privilege now to be a part of the Study.”

We are very grateful to have Chris’s expertise in our team. Welcome to the team, Chris!