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Response to global crisis in indigenous mental health

Wellington campus

Tuesday, 16 February 2016 3:51pm

Keri Lawson image
Dr Keri Lawson-TeAho

Innovative approaches to address traumatised indigenous communities will be described by Australian educators Barbara Wingard and Dr David Denborough from the Dulwich Centre for Narrative Therapy in Wellington tomorrow.

They will speak at a public lecture on Wednesday, 17 February, at the University of Otago, Wellington as part of its Public Health Summer School.

“Indigenous population-based mental health is in a state of crisis and is now recognised as a major contributor to the global burden of disease,” says organiser Dr Keri Lawson-TeAho, from the University of Otago, Wellington.

“These practitioners focus on trauma work in indigenous communities and populations including innovative approaches to working with traumatised communities such as the ‘Tree of Life’ which they have delivered around the world,” she says.

Barbara Wingard, a Senior Australian Aboriginal Elder and current Commissioner for the Environmental Resources and Development Court, was named Elder of the Year (Female) in South Australia in 2008. She and co-author, Jane Lester, wrote the influential book “Telling our stories in ways that make us stronger”.

Dr David Denborough, an educator, writer/editor and community worker, has been involved in Tree of Life and Team of Life.

Their collective narrative methodologies seek to assist people to address the effects of traumatic experiences without having to speak directly about them. They are interested in how collective narrative practices can spark and/or sustain social movement.

The speakers will also be at a free marae-based workshop about healing from trauma using narrative approaches and story-telling, hosted by the University of Otago, Wellington and our Treaty partner, Kōkiri Hauora, at the Kōkiri Seaview marae tomorrow.

For further information contact:

Dr Keri Lawson-TeAho
Department of Public Health, University of Otago, Wellington
Tel 64 4 918 6050
Mob 64 021 084 74572
Email keri-rose.lawson-teaho@otago.ac.nz

A list of Otago experts available for media comment is available elsewhere on this website.

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