Supporting Aboriginal community organisations to use research and information to help improve their services is a part of our approach to research.
Aboriginal organisations receive many requests to be involved in research projects, but in the past have felt they received very little in return from the research. Many organisations have been suspicious of working with researchers because of lack of trust, lack of control or simply from not knowing what might be involved. Increasingly Aboriginal organisations are coming to see that they can use research for their own benefit.
The Lowitja Institute is committed to Aboriginal people leading the development of research priorities and being fully involved in research activities at all levels.
Information about supporting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities can be found at Case Stories for Researchers.
Examples of how our predecessor, The CRC for Aboriginal Health, worked to support Aboriginal organisations include:
- putting Aboriginal people in the driving seat in deciding what should be researched (for CRC-funded research projects);
- providing ways for the Aboriginal health sector to get a feel for research in ways that are manageable and safe (for instance, by taking part in the review of research projects or industry roundtables);
- funding projects initiated by community organisations; (for example: Aboriginal Health Council of South Australia, and Victorian Aboriginal Health Service).
- ensuring community organisations are involved in research projects as real partners;
- carrying out research projects that show how health services can use their own data to help improve their services;
- supporting Aboriginal Health Workers to take up research (read Carolyn Thompson's story) or to become a Link person (read Cyril Oliver's story).