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NAIDOC WEEK: Take 5 with Aunty Judith ‘Jacko’ Jackson

In recognition of NAIDOC week 7-14 July 2019, we had a quick chat with Gunggari woman and Elder and Star Health Volunteer Aunty Judith ‘Jacko’ Jackson, better known as “Aunty Jacko” by her peers and Aboriginal Peoples. Aunty Jacko has received a number of awards for her outstanding community work, including being inducted in the 2016 Victorian Aboriginal Honour Roll.

Leading into NAIDOC, we have Reconciliation Week and Mabo Day. During NAIDOC, there’s the ‘Walk with us’ special walk that occurs through the centre of town to the Esperance Foreshore to mark the beginning of NAIDOC week. These events are very special for Aunty Jacko and the themes themselves are particularly meaningful.

“I love the themes,” says Aunty Jacko. “The theme for this year is fabulous, ‘voice, treaty and truth’ really mean something.”

“As a community, we’ve been working together for some time now to try to make a difference,” Aunty Jacko shares.

She recognises these events play an essential role in sharing indigenous culture. “Through my work in the community I speak with a number of people who know very little, if anything about our culture,” says Aunty Jacko.

“It’s important that we teach our languages and culture in schools. This may mean more elders visiting schools. Our children are the future. It’s important that they know where they’ve come from so that they don’t lose their culture and can pass this on to future generation,”

Over the past 16 years, Star Health has developed strong connections with local Indigenous communities. We provide a range of health services and support to the community with a specific focus on elders, women, families and young people. We also host a number of regular community events.

Star Health Indigenous Access & Equity Coordinator Alison Craigie-Parsons is a proud Aboriginal woman of the Gomeroi people of central New South Wales/Southern Queensland added, “I really enjoy working with Star Health because they are genuinely dedicated to the indigenous community. They are determined to engage and build relationship with and to provide better health care and outcomes for our clients.”

“As an organisation, we see the indigenous community as an important part of our overall strategic planning,” says Alison.

If you’re looking to attend one of the many event occurring during NAIDOC week, please click here.

Star Health acknowledge the traditional owners of this land, the Yalukit Willam clan of the Boon Wurrung people and pay our respects to their elders both past and present. We acknowledge and uphold their continuing relationship to this land.