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Creating cultural empathy and challenging attitudes through Indigenous narratives

The project was led by Edith Cowan University and brought together non-health-service sectors, educators and health professionals to collaborate as a reflective, multidisciplinary team, with shared visions and goals. The collaborators included Combined Universities Centre for Rural Health; The University of Notre Dame, Australia; Curtin University and Health Consumers’ Council, WA.

The project was funded by the Office of Learning and Teaching, an initiative of the Australian Government Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations.

The aims of the project were:

  • to positively influence the health and wellbeing of Australian Aboriginal people by improving the education of health professionals;
  • to engage students with authentic stories of Aboriginal people’s experience of healthcare, both positive and negative, in order to enhance the development of deep and lasting empathy.

The outcomes of the project

The project website, with free access to all resources on registration, includes:

  • Forty-one (41) narratives available as videos (embedded in YouTube) and/or transcripts, comprising stories collected from Aboriginal Australians in Western Australia about their experiences with health services. A search function is available based on the narrative themes.
  • Four scenarios - on the key themes of communication, passing on, drunken stereotypes and the Stolen Generation.
  • Facilitation guides to the narratives and scenarios which includes suggested questions for teaching.

The final report on the project is available on the Office of Learning and Teaching website.


Professor Cobie Rudd
Professor Colleen Hayward
Professor Moira Sim
Ms Toni Wain

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