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I dreamed about you

Today UCRH hosted another fantastic Baribunmani Wanyi Ngay Day. This youth program, the name of which comes from a Bundjalung phrase that means ‘I dreamed about you’, is designed to encourage young Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people to pursue careers in health. Around 25 students from Mount St Patrick College (Murwillumbah) and Xavier Catholic College (Ballina) came along to get an insight into what it could be like for them to pursue a career in any number of health-related fields.

Today the program included a great session with Jaiden, a pharmacy student on placement with us at Lismore Base Hospital, giving the participants an introduction to his chosen field of study. The students also rotated through three hands-on simulation skills workshops, ably presented by other university students on placement, which delved into occupational therapy, plastering and basic life support. Thanks to University of Sydney medical students Brendan, Grace, Rhi, Bec, Tim and Zack for their support; and to occupational therapy students Brittany (Australian Catholic University), Lauren (University of Sydney) and Claudia (University of Sydney).

Key member of the Aboriginal Health Team at UCRH, Marcelle Townsend-Cross, said the Baribunmani Wanyi Ngay program is about opening the minds of participants.

“We want young people to be able to dream about themselves as future health professionals and we want to show them how impactful a career in healthcare can be,” she said.

“We make the sessions fun, but the message is serious,” she added.

“Like elsewhere in Australia, Aboriginal people in the Bundjalung nation face significant disparity in health and social indicators. We believe that a key way to address that is by equipping our own people, the next generation, with the skills and knowledge to shift that reality.”