Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Lived Experience Led Peer Worker Guide

The development of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Lived Experience Led Peer Worker Guide was a true partnership between the Mental Health Commission and the Black Dog Institute's Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Lived Experience Centre. The community-led approach prioritised the voices and experiences of the community to ensure the Guide is culturally accurate, relevant and respectful.

The Guide describes the flow and interconnectedness of peer work with the following analogy “Picture a river, like the Derbarl Yerrigan, or any river of significance. The water moves upstream, downstream, moving over stone and sustaining life. Often parts of nature such as plants, leaves, bark, and wildlife enter the river, but the river keeps moving, manoeuvring in and around the environment in the direction it needs to go, but rarely forceful. There is a fluidity or flow to the river, navigating through nature, but does this with ease. The flow of the river is peer work.

Peer work is the flow between different knowledge systems, different worlds, and different environments. It navigates the space in between First Nations and western knowledge systems and the many worlds that First Nations Peoples must find their way through every day. Peer work flows with an exceptional strength and capacity to understand, negotiate, and balance the difference of often competing systems.”

The Guide is in the final stages of development with a mid-2024 launch date anticipated. Several launch events will be held to promote the Guide including an online webinar style event - launch date and further details will be announced shortly.

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