Jobs Events Advertise

Indigenous Consulting Group delivering culturally safe domestic violence prevention workshops

Rachael Knowles -

Lifeline WA and Aboriginal trainers from the Indigenous Consulting Group (ICG) are joining forces to deliver workshops around domestic and family violence in Aboriginal communities and families.

As it stands, First Nations people are twice as likely than non-Indigenous people to be affected by domestic and family violence.

Lifeline WA, in working with ICG trainers, have employed Aboriginal people to deliver culturally safe and appropriate workshops. The workshops include Indigenous DV-alert facilitated by Palyku Bunaba Walmajarri Nyoongar woman, Tara McCulloch, and Brothers Standing Tall, facilitated by Yamatji man, Brian Councillor.

DV-alert is a free two-day workshop that supports frontline community and volunteer workers in learning about Aboriginal culture and history. The workshop increases their ability to identify signs of violence and their capacity to deliver culturally safe care or refer clients to alternate services that will support the person's wellbeing.

A proud mother with experience supporting Indigenous women through domestic and family violence, McCulloch said it's important for people working within the sector to understand Aboriginal history and culture.

"A lot of people understand domestic violence, and when you are faced with the trauma of all those clients, constantly being told these horrible stories ... you are empathetic to them. You can start to feel the stages of burnout," she said.

"But lots of people come in and ask, 'How do I help blackfullas?' ... For Indigenous women, it is completely differentâ€"she is an important person in her community. [Workers] need to understand the dynamic of Aboriginal cultural ways."

McCulloch noted the importance of frontline workers in delivering appropriate care.

"Being able to positively interact with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people is a skill you can learn," she said.

"When you have those communication skills, non-verbal and verbal, it can play a huge role in how you can support them and provide positive outcomes for each client."

Men's program, Brothers Standing Tall, is a two-hour interactive presentation on domestic and family violence which is specifically designed for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander men. The presentation develops a culturally safe space for men to learn, yarn and feel supported around how to prevent violence in their families and communities.

Councillor, a proud father and Yamatji man, delivers Brothers Standing Tall.

"It's a great opportunity for our men to come together in a non-judgmental and safe environment."

"[We are] getting them to learn and talk about family violence and the impact on Aboriginal and [Torres Strait] Islander families ... getting them to start reflecting on and thinking about what we can do to stop and prevent domestic and family violence in our community and throughout Australia."

Councillor said it's important for men to feel supported and empowered.

"Aboriginal men growing up, we already have people looking at us and thinking that we are thieves, that we beat people up and we're criminals. We are already fighting that before we even grow up," he said.

"This training is going to help us, but we need people to understand as Aboriginal men we are not all violent, we're not thieves or criminals. Trying to change that perception is important.

"Sometimes people who are really good people just make bad mistakes and the wrong decisions, we can't keep judging people again and again and never give them an avenue to resolve these issues."

Councillor feels a strong connection to his role facilitating the workshops and the work he can do to support the men involved.

"As a Yamatji man, I have cultural obligations not just to my people and my land but to Australia and humanity," he said.

"Women in our culture are the most important, because they have our children. If our women aren't being looked after ... where does our culture end up?"

By Rachael Knowles


Unis need new angle for attracting Indigenous engineers
The work of Aboriginal engineers has survived thousands of years but universities are missing out on attracting a new generation...
Rudi Maxwell 21 Feb 2024
NSW grants announced to boost language revitalisation
The New South Wales government has announced $1.6 million in grants to boost the revitalisation of Aboriginal languages.Grants o...
Giovanni Torre 21 Feb 2024
International Mother Language Day to see calls for dual naming policies across Australia
Victoria's First Peoples’ Assembly will mark International Mother Language Day on Wednesday by calling for governments and other...
Dechlan Brennan 21 Feb 2024
Thomas Weatherall’s play “Blue” explores the complexities of coming-of-age
The captivating play “Blue” delves into the complexities of a coming-of-age narrative, exploring themes of family dynamics, masc...
Rhiannon Clarke 20 Feb 2024

   Rachael Knowles   

Stephen Dawson booted from Western Australian Aboriginal Affairs portfolio
Questions have arisen about Western Australia’s Aboriginal Affairs Department after Minister Stephen Dawson was stripped of the...
Rachael Knowles 21 Dec 2021
Inquest into Victorian death in custody of Aboriginal woman begins
Please note: This story contains reference to and an image of someone who has died. The Directions hearing into the death in...
Rachael Knowles 17 Dec 2021
Gamilaraay star hits new heights as Toyota Star Maker Grand Finalist
Country music star and Gamilaraay woman Loren Ryan has a grand finalist in the 2022 Toyota Star Maker competition. Ms Ryan, a...
Rachael Knowles 22 Dec 2021
WA Government cops backlash after passing of Cultural Heritage Bill
Criticism has continued for the Western Australian Government after the Cultural Heritage Bill was passed without amendment on W...
Rachael Knowles 16 Dec 2021