Social and Emotional Wellbeing

Social and Emotional Wellbeing

Social and emotional wellbeing is the foundation of physical and mental health for Indigenous Australians. It is a holistic concept that encompasses the importance of connection to land, culture, spirituality and ancestry, and how these affect the wellbeing of the individual and the community.

Indigenous Australians’ experience of social and emotional wellbeing varies across different cultural groups as well as across individuals. The concept of SEWB also recognises that a person’s wellbeing is influenced by the social determinants of health, engendered through the inequity of government policies, institutional racism, the effects of colonisation and other past events. SEWB is not the same as mental health and mental illness, but they can interact with and influence each other.

AHCWA has been funded by the Mental Health Commission (MHC) to undertake a pilot project that highlights an ACCHS SEWB Model of Service, created in consultation with AHCWA’s Member Services. This three year pilot will be evaluated in consultation with the University of Western Australia and will support Derby Aboriginal Health Service; Wirraka Maya Health Service; Geraldton Regional Aboriginal Medical Service; Bega Garnbirringu Health Service; and South West Aboriginal Medical Service. Each site has been funded to provide a culturally secure SEWB Team who will develop services in line with the AHCWA SEWB Model of Service, with flexibility to adapt to local community needs.

The ACCHS SEWB Model of Service imbeds seven positions with cultural and clinical expertise; Clinical Lead (Mental Health Clinician), Cultural Lead (50D position), SEWB Workers (one male, one female, 50D positions), Qualified Counsellors (one male, one female) and Care Coordinators / Administration.

AHCWA has a SEWB Program Manager and Project Officer who support the sites and manage stakeholder relations, as well as promoting the model of service to relevant organisations.

View ACCHS SEWB service Model here

SEWB Workforce Support and Development Unit

AHCWA’s SEWB Team incorporates an NIAA funded Workforce Support and Development Unit; a Learning and Development Coordinator and Learning & Development Officer ensure that NIAA funded ACCHS and ACCO’s who provide SEWB and AOD services have access to support for workers through identification of training and networking opportunities.

Family, Domestic and Sexual Violence Pilot Program

AHCWA has been funded by Department of Communities (DoC) to undertake a pilot project which will be evaluated in consultation by Edith Cowen University and will support Derbarl Yerrigan Health Service, South West Aboriginal Medical Service, Puntukurnu Aboriginal Medical Service, Broome Regional Aboriginal Medical Service, Ngangganawili Aboriginal Medical Service and Yura Yungi Aboriginal Medical Service

The Family, Domestic and Sexual Violence (FDSV) Pilot Program started in November 2022 and will build capacity of FDSV services in the Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Sector.

Family, Domestic and Sexual Violence practice and: Family, Domestic and Sexual Violence Support in WA ACCHS Pilot Project.

AHCWA has a Family, Domestic and Sexual Violence Advisor who will support the sites.

Culture Care Connect Program

NACCHO has been funded by the federal Department of Health to nationally coordinate the Culture Care Connect Program until 30 June 2025. This program is the first of its kind.

  • establishment of up to 31 community-controlled suicide prevention networks
  • establishment of Community-controlled aftercare services in each network region
  • Jurisdictional suicide prevention planning and coordination within Affiliates
  • Community-controlled suicide prevention training, including Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Mental Health First Aid.

The Culture Care Connect (CCC) program brings together key streams of suicide prevention planning, coordination and activity across the network regions, including raising awareness, early intervention, crisis management and aftercare services. Community controlled suicide prevention networks (CCSPN) will be established across the country. Aftercare services will also be delivered by ACCHOs participating in a CCSPN, in partnership with existing regional mental health services.

  • Jurisdiction suicide prevention coordination, undertake service mapping, develop relationships, develop a jurisdictional suicide prevention plan which ensures alignment with state and national priorities/context, and outlines systemic or other changes to address barriers and opportunities across the state.
  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Mental Health First Aid delivery to the workforces participating in Suicide Prevention Networks.
  1. Safety Systems – Ensure, within our ability, that systems drive the best outcomes for strong social and emotional wellbeing.
  2. Strong Workforce – Program workforce are provided with the skills and supports they need.
  3. Aftercare Services – Each ACCHO within CCSPNs will be resourced to co-design and deliver trauma-aware, healing-informed aftercare services
  4. Monitor and Evaluate – All program components will be monitored and evaluated for continuous quality improvement. AHCWA and ACCHOs to ensure monitoring and evaluation is as helpful as possible, with limited burden.
  • Increasing workforce and sector capability and capacity, through resourcing and supports
  • empowering Community and our Community-controlled sector to plan and coordinate suicide prevention services
  • Creating a shared language for how our Communities describe suicide prevention activities delivered by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people that can be reflected in our ongoing advocacy.
  • Promoting social and emotional wellbeing, through focussing on the cultural determinants of health that keep our people strong and resilient
  • Reducing stigma of suicide and ill mental health in our Communities and services.