National Experts Group for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Eye Health (NEGA&TSIEH)
National Experts Group for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Eye Health Update:
The activities being undertaken by the National Experts Group for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Eye Health (NEGA&TSIEH) continues to grow as does the membership.
2022 National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Eye Health Conference (NATSIEHC22):
NEGA&TSIEH has been focussed on the NATSIEHC22 and proudly supported the conference by establishing the Conference Leadership Group (CLG) which provided leadership, direction, and inspiration for the conference.
CLG meetings commenced in August 2021 with the group providing oversight in the planning and preparations and ensuring that the conference theme, Our Vision in Our Hands, was lived throughout the entire process. The group worked closely with IEHU and the Program Advisory Group (PAG) to shape the conference and led the selection of Keynote Speakers whilst overseeing the National Awards process and ensuring that the cultural elements where embedded within the program to create an experience that empowered Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander delegates whilst providing guidance to our allies within the sector.
Assuming the role of the CLG enabled NEGA&TSIEH to host the conference and presented an opportunity to expand our membership and expertise. The NEGA&TSIEH membership at present includes Anne-Marie Banfield, Shaun Tatipata (Co-Chairs), Emma Robertson, Nick Wilson, Tania McLeod, Nicole Turner, Tanya Morrison, Lauren Hutchinson, Makkaillah Ridgeway, Walter Bathern and Lesley Martin.
Visions for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Eye Health in 2030 Project:
The NATSIEHC22 created an opportunity for NEGA&TSIEH to bring together a larger number of First Nations voices to reimagine what the future of eye health for our communities could and should look like.
On day 1 of the NATSIEHC22 Professor Sohail Inayatulla facilitated a futures thinking workshop for all First Nations delegates. This is the first step of a series of workshops for those interested in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander leadership and determination of eye health. NEGA&TSIEH would like to thank Deadly Enterprises for their support and assistance in leading the Visions for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Eye Health in 2030 Project and the Fred Hollows Foundation for funding the Project. The aim of this project is to hear from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people involved in or supporting the delivery of eye care to their communities on what their vision for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander eye health is in the future.
An emerging idea from this Project is the establishment of a First Nations Eye Health Alliance (FNEHA) to support greater networking opportunities and the sharing of success stories and strategies to advance eye health in our communities. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander delegates attending NATSIEHC22 were able to indicate their interest in joining the FNEHA with a significant proportion taking up the opportunity. Please contact Shaun Tatipata at firstname.lastname@example.org to find out more about the FNEHA or to express your interest in joining. (Please note that FNEHA membership is open to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people only).
Roadmap Evaluation Project:
NEGA&TSIEH would like to note the completion of the Roadmap Evaluation Project and the development of resources to support dissemination of these learnings. The establishment of NEGA&TSIEH was a direct result of this project evolving from the evaluation's Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Reference Group (A&TSIRG) which provided input and guidance from 2019 to 2021. We would like to acknowledge the support and encouragement provided by IEHU, participants of the evaluation co-design workshops and the Consultants involved in the Roadmap Evaluation Project in laying the foundations for the NEGA&TSIEH today. A special mention to Dr Tessa Saunders for her support, enthusiasm and patience when working with the A&TSIRG and for her encouragement in establishing the NEG&ATSIEH. A big shout out to Nicole Tijuage for her contribution and for sharing her wisdom and expertise with the rest of the A&TSIRG and we are very much looking forward to working with you again sometime soon.
NACCHOs Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Eye Health and Vision Care Committee:
NEGA&TSIEH Co-Chairs, Anne-Marie Banfield and Shaun Tatipata, have been invited to join NACCHO's Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Eye Health and Vision Care Committee.
The Committee consists of NACCHO and ACCHO State Affiliate representatives and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander leaders in the Eye Health and Vision Care sector. It has been formed to ensure there is Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander voice in national and jurisdictional policy and program decision making for eye health and Vision care that impacts ACCHOs and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities.
The involvement of the co-chairs presents an opportunity for NEGA&TSIEH to provide input and strategic advice to assist in progressing eye health and vision care priorities, programs and policy for the ACCHO sector supporting improved eye health outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities.