Learning from Central Australian Aboriginal women’s experiences: Reflections on participation in the CAAC Family Partnership Program in Alice Springs

For many years Aboriginal women have identified the health of mothers and their babies as a high priority and maternal and child health has been identified as a priority area in key Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander policy initiatives. However, as many commentators have observed, there is a dearth of information and evidence to guide the planning and implementation of antenatal, postnatal and early childhood programs for Australian Indigenous women and their children.

This project, initiated by Aboriginal women at Central Australian Aboriginal Congress, addresses the importance of gathering, exploring and analysing the views and opinions of the women utilising, or withdrawing from, the Central Australian Aboriginal Congress Family Partnership Program (CAAC FPP).

The project aims to identify and document the effects, benefits and/or disadvantages of participating in the FPP from the perspective of the Aboriginal women clients and the FPP staff. The intention is to add to the knowledge and evidence base of what Aboriginal women consider to be an effective program, improving the capacity of the FPP, and thereby ultimately improving the health outcomes for Aboriginal women and their children.

A Steering Committee of Aboriginal women will guide and inform the project. Research training will be provided to an Aboriginal research trainee. Methods include: individual and group discussions with Aboriginal clients, staff and key stakeholders; document review; reflexive sessions with staff; and quantitative analysis of routinely collected data. A Community Report and final project report with recommendations will be produced.

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Created: 31 January 2013 - Updated: 09 May 2013