AIPA has delivered cultural competence training to 600 psychologists

20 Mar 2014

Concern about the large and increasing mental health gap stimulated AIPA to develop its Journey Toward Cultural Competence Workshop With Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples workshop.

Since June 2010, AIPA has delivered 82 cultural competence workshops to 1,125 non-Indigenous members of the mental health workforce (psychologists, social workers, mental health nurses, occupational therapists, psychiatrists).

Participants have included:

  • 600 Psychologists - including 54 clinical psychologists, 4 educational and developmental psychologists and 12 who were provisionally registered.
  • 140 Administrators
  • 130 Social Workers (mental health trained)
  • 63 Mental Health Nurses
  • 44 Counsellors
  • 21 Occupational Therapists (mental health trained)
  • 10 Psychiatrists

95% of participants have rated the workshops as either 'excellent' or 'very good' and 99% would recommend it to others.

Participants have delivered services in a range of settings, including the following programs delivered by the Department of Health through Medicare Locals:

  • Access To Allied Psychological Services (678 participants)
  • Mental Health Services in Rural and Remote Areas (37 participants)
  • headspace (102 participants)

Workshop locations have included:

  • Victoria: Melbourne (9), Geelong, Mildura, Shepparton
  • Queensland: Brisbane (7), Cairns (3), Gold Coast (2), Townsville (3) Bundaberg, Ipswich, Maroochydore, Rockhampton, Toowoomba
  • New South Wales: Sydney (9), Wollongong (3), Newcastle (3), Armidale, Cobar, Coffs Harbour, Dubbo, Orange, Parramatta, Penrith, Tweed Heads, Wagga Wagga
  • Northern Territory: Darwin (4), Alice Springs
  • Western Australia: Perth (6), Broome (2), Fremantle, Geraldton
  • South Australia: Adelaide (6), Port Augusta
  • Tasmania:  Hobart, Launceston
  • ACT: Canberra (2)

Participants have provided services in the following Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Services: Nunkuwarrin Yunti; Central Australian Aboriginal Congress Preschool Readiness Program, Social and Emotional Wellbeing Branch and Drug and Alcohol Program; Santa Theresa Social and Emotional Wellbeing Program; Bila Muuji Social Emotional Wellbeing; Murdi Paaki Drug & Alcohol Network; Victorian Aboriginal Health Service Family Counselling Service; Gunjitmarra Aboriginal Cooperative; Yarra Valley Aboriginal Health Service; Wollongong Aboriginal Medical Service; Redfern Aboriginal Medical Service; Townsville Aboriginal health service; Katungal Aboriginal Corporation; Bega Medical Service; Aboriginal Medical Service Western Sydney; Illawarra Aboriginal Medical Service; Yorgum Family Health Service; Rumbalara Health Service; Danila Dilba Health Service; Mamu Health Service; Bidgerdii Aboriginal & Islander Health Service; Apunipima Cape York Health Council; Derby Aboriginal Health Service; Institute for Urban Indigenous Health; Townsville Aboriginal and Islander Health Service; Miwatj Health Aboriginal Corporation; and Pika Wiya Health Service.

AIPA has achieved this herculean task using 3 contractors - Amanda Hart (project manager), Tania Dalton (cultural competence coordinator) and Kerrie Kelly (resource development officer) - working with a deadly team of 14 AIPA cultural competence facilitators who travel to deliver workshops. 

Wise Connections Event Management agency has been key to AIPA's success, and the APS has auspiced the projects in return for fee.