We Believe in Self-Determination

The Centre of Best Practice in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Suicide Prevention (CBPATSISP) has its genesis in the substantial work of the national Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Suicide Prevention Evaluation Project (ATSISPEP). The CBPATSISP builds on the work of ATSISPEP.

The CBPATSISP aims to reduce the causes, prevalence and impact of suicide on Indigenous individuals, families and communities.This will be done by identifying, translating and promoting the adoption of best practice in Indigenous specific suicide prevention activity, including that which is found in emerging national and international research.

The CBPATSISP website is intended to provide a clearinghouse and comprises:

  • An Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander suicide prevention evaluation framework
  • A systems approach suicide prevention planning, implementation and evaluation guide (with Black Dog Institute)
  • A clearing house of best and promising practices, programs and services in  Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander suicide prevention
  • A clearing house of best practice research about Indigenous suicide prevention
  • An Indigenous Governance Framework for PHNs (with Black Dog Institute)
  • A comprehensive range of resources
  • A National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander and a World Indigenous Suicide Prevention Conference

The initial development of an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Evaluation Framework was completed as one of the key aims of ATSISPEP, an initiative funded by the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet for the Australian Government to identify what programs and services are most effective in helping reduce the high rates of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander suicide. ATSISPEP was led by Professor Pat Dudgeon and managed by the School of Indigenous Studies (SIS), at the University of Western Australia, in collaboration with the Telethon Kids Institute and the Healing Foundation (HF).

The CBPATSISP is located under the Poche Centre for Indigenous Health, within the School of Indigenous Studies at the University of Western Australia (UWA).

Core Principles

Our core principles are about establishing culturally responsive community, family and individual support systems and programs to promote pathways to recovery through dealing with loss, grief and disconnection, trauma and helplessness, powerless and lack of control is essential to reduce mental health issues, high risk behaviours and suicide. This in turn requires:

  • Self-determination and community governance

  • Reconnection and community life

  • Restoration and community resilience

Our Vision and Aims

Best practice is viewed through an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community lens:

  • With the highest degree of proven effectiveness in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community/cultural contexts

  • With transferability across urban, rural and remote settings

  • Identified by high quality research/evaluations

The CBPATSISP aims to support best practice in Indigenous suicide prevention through the following:

  • Establishing a Clearing House of best practice programs and services in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander suicide prevention

  • Establishing a Clearing House of research in Indigenous suicide prevention in both national and international contexts

  • Identifying best practice guidelines and resource materials

  • Producing an Indigenous Governance Framework in partnership with the Black Dog Institute

  • Holding National and World Indigenous suicide prevention conferences

The CBPATSISP aims are as follows:

1.      Identifying the need for and facilitating, innovative new research (including evaluations of un-evaluated activity) to support the further identification of  Indigenous best practice.

2.    Assessing best practice by Primary Health Networks (PHNs) in planning and commissioning Indigenous suicide prevention activities.

3.   Working to translate best practice for application in Indigenous communities, community organisations, and by PHNs. This includes developing accessible and appropriate guidance and resource materials.

4.   Developing an Indigenous-specific adaptation of the systems approach (e.g. European Alliance Against Depression model) to suicide prevention, based on identified best practice and aligned with the current overarching approach.

5.   Proactively promoting and disseminating best practice research to ensure accessibility for all stakeholders through a Clearinghouse developed in consultation with and technical support from the Australian Indigenous HealthInfoNet and National Conferences and the creation of a responsive education/guidance program tailored to stakeholder needs. This includes:

  • Best practice in Indigenous suicide prevention education programs delivered to PHNs with follow up over the life of the program
  • A complementary education best practice program and resources specifically for Indigenous communities and organisations to help them work effectively with PHNs
  •  A best practice email advisory service for communities, community organisations and PHNs
  • A key aim of CBPATSISP Clearinghouse is to further refine the ATSISPEP Evaluation Framework which was developed to measure the effectiveness and cultural appropriateness of suicide prevention initiatives

A key aim of the CBPATSISP Clearing House is to further refine the ATSISPEP Evaluation Framework, which was developed to measure the effectiveness and cultural appropriateness of suicide prevention initiatives.

Artist Acknowledgement

Moortang Yoowarl Dandjoo Yaanginy
Families (Cultures) Coming Together for a Common Purpose (Sharing)

Shifting Sands

About the Artwork
This artwork represents our people doing business on country that is recovering from colonisation, our lands taken over, our cultures decimated, and our families separated causing hardship, despair, and loss of hope.

The many years of oppression to our cultures that our families and our Elders have had to endure has meant that we have needed to adapt and learn to engage and address a wide range of issues impacting on our families, in both traditional and contemporary ways. We are concerned with strengthening and reconnecting to our countries, cultures and families, to nurturing cultural identity and pride whilst still trying to carry our immediate and collective business as First Peoples of Country, but, on Shifting Sands.

The strong representation of our connected communities in the foreground of the painting symbolises the strength of our people as a group, displaying a new sense of cultural identity and pride, and a place of belonging while acknowledging the trauma affecting our families in the present.

We are rising once again, taking control of our own destinies, linking up strongly to each other across an uncertain terrain that will once again become solid as we become reconnected at all levels within a spirit of hope.

About the Artist

Aunty Roma Winmar, Noongar artist, was born in Gnowangerup, a small town in the southwest of Western Australia, in 1944. Her artwork has been presented nationally and internationally with numerous exhibitions. Aunty Roma is a Noongar Language teacher at the Moorditj Noongar Community College in Middle Swan, Western Australia.

Artwork Copyright: Roma Winmar 2018

Contact Us

Centre of Best Practice in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Suicide Prevention

School of Indigenous Studies, University of Western Australia

cbp.clearinghouse@uwa.edu.au 

+61 8 6488 6926

Acknowledgement of Country

We acknowledge and pay our respects to the traditional custodians of the land we live and work on, the Wadjuk people of the Noongar nation, and their Elders past, present and emerging. We also wish to acknowledge and respect the continuing culture, strength, and resilience of all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and communities as well as our Indigenous members from other parts of the world.