Dave Taylor’s smile was absolutely on high beam when the event he and colleagues created, Future Health Champions Expo, won the prestigious Mid North Coast Local Health District (MNCLHD) Chief Executive’s Close the Gap Award in Coffs Harbour last week.
A member of the Jaanymili Barwunga community group, which came together as part of the Brokerage Solutions plan to help heal the hurting township, Dave, who is also principal of Bowraville Central, said the win was exciting because it put the town solidly on the Health Department’s map.
“The Expo (in March) was all about inspiring Indigenous students in Bowraville and surrounding areas to pursue a career in health,” Dave said.
“We now have a commitment from Australian Indigenous Doctors’ Association (AIDA) CEO Craig Dukes that he’ll find a mentor for any Aboriginal kids from Bowraville wanting to go into medicine.
“Plus there is Federal funding for the expo to be held around Australia four times a year, next stop is Kalgoorlie … and it all started in Bowraville.”
AIDA hosted the event with the assistance of the MNCLHD and Bowraville Central School.
At the awards ceremony, MNCLHD Chief Executive Stewart Dowrick said the award recognised a collaboration between organisations whose common goal was to inspire future health leaders and work together to improve health outcomes for Aboriginal people.
“The expo at Bowraville Central School was enormously successful and engaged the community at all levels. The students who attended saw a different side to the health sector and met wonderful role models who are devoted to keeping the community healthy,” Mr Dowrick said.