Explorations Series: Yindyamarra Talks - COVID: Our Lives matter

Start: 26 Aug 2021 10:30 am
End: 26 Aug 2021 11:30 am

Yindyamarra Talks - COVID: Our Lives Matter from Adam Bannister on Vimeo.

In a world of fear and misinformation, Charles Sturt University brings together an expert panel to break down the issues for First Nations People. Why you should be vaccinated? Which vaccine to get? How can we protect our communities? How do we build better trust in health care?

Please join Stan Grant Jr and expert panel members in a one hour public forum where we will answer your questions about a health emergency that is threatening our mob.

The panel will consist of Stan Grant, Professor Juanita Sherwood, Jamie Newman, Donna Hartz, Nikki Trudgett and Rachael McPhail.

Stan Grant 

Stan Grant

Vice Chancellor's Chair of Australian/Indigenous Belonging

Charles Sturt University

Stan Grant is the Vice Chancellor's Chair of Australian/Indigenous Belonging at Charles Sturt University. He is also the Global Affairs and Indigenous Affairs Analyst for the ABC.

He is one of Australia's most respected and awarded journalists, with more than 30 years’ experience in radio and television news and current affairs. Stan has a strong reputation for independence and integrity and has interviewed international political and business leaders, including our own prime ministers and senior ministers.

Prior to taking up his latest role Stan served for a decade at a Senior International Correspondent for CNN in Asia and the Middle East, broadcasting to an audience of millions around the world.

He has interviewed numerous world leaders including Nelson Mandela, Hillary Clinton, John Kerry, Condoleezza Rice, Yasser Arafat, Mahmoud Abbas, Shimon Peres, Bill Clinton, and Australian Prime Ministers Bob Hawke, Paul Keating, John Howard, Kevin Rudd, Julia Gillard, Tony Abbott, and Malcolm Turnbull.

Stan has won numerous international and Australian awards including a Peabody Award, Columbia University Alfred I. duPont award, four times winner of the prestigious Asia TV awards including best news story and reporter of the year, twice winner of the coveted Australian Walkley Award, as well as a TV Logie award, GQ Magazine agenda setter of the year and an Australian Academy of Arts Cinema and Television Award (Australia's Oscars) as male TV presenter of the year.

Stan is an award winning and best selling author of several books and has contributed articles to many major Australian newspapers, magazines and journals.

Professor Juanita Sherwood 

Professor Juanita Sherwood

Pro Vice-Chancellor First Nations Engagement

Charles Sturt University

Professor Juanita Sherwood is a proud First Nations woman with Wiradjuri, Murri, Maori and Anglo-Celtic lineages. Her mother’s grandfather was born in Wagga Wagga and her family is connected to Country from Jerilderie through to Yass.

Prof Sherwood is Pro Vice-Chancellor First Nations Engagement at Charles Sturt University. She has been a nurse, teacher, lecturer, and researcher for over 35 years. Her work has changed health and education outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children across the nation. This includes increasing the uptake of Indigenous-centred research and decolonisation methods in Australia, and recognising colonisation as the primary determinant of Indigenous health, as well as being a strong proponent of cultural safety.

Currently she is involved in several large NHMRC funded projects, including the ‘Birthing on Country’ (BoC) and ‘Strengthening systems for Indigenous healthcare Equity’ (STRIDE) Centres for Research Excellence, ‘Decolonising Practice in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander primary health care’ project, and the new nationally funded $10 million NHMRC National First Nations Research Network to build Indigenous Research Capacity.

Pro Sherwood is a CATSINaM Founding Member, member of the Elders Advisory Council, Board Director and Muliyan Founding member.

Jamie Newman 

Jamie Newman


Orange Aboriginal Medical Service

Jamie Newman, a proud Wiradjuri descendent has been the CEO of Orange Aboriginal Medical Service since 2005.

He completed a Bachelor of Health Science, Community & Public Health degree at Charles Sturt University Dubbo in 2001.

In 2002 he was successful in obtaining the role of Area Manager –  Aboriginal Health for the  previously known Mid Western Area Health and held this position until 2004.

He has been a past Director of the Aboriginal Health & Medical Research Council of NSW, previous Chairperson of the Bila Muuji Regional Aboriginal Health Service in Western NSW, a previous Board member of the Western Primary Health Network and a recently retired Council Member of Charles Sturt University.

Jamie has been involved in multiple Aboriginal health research projects ranging from data, workforce, population health, models of care and integrated care.

Jamie has over twenty years extensive experience working with and for Aboriginal communities at both a Government and Non-Government level and is driven by the desire to see all people have a “quality whole of life”.

“Being Aboriginal is a reason to succeed, rather than an excuse not to”

Donna Hartz 

Donna Hartz

Donna Hartz is an RN and RM with more than 35 years’ experience as a clinician, educator/lecturer, midwife consultant, project manager, and researcher. She is a descendent of the Kamilaroi/Gomaroi people. Her current positions include Associate Professor at Newcastle University, an Associate with Burbangana Group and holds adjunct positions at Western Sydney and Charles Darwin Universities.

She is a Chief Investigator on the 2018 NHMRC BOOSt study implementation and evaluation of Birth on Country models and the 2020 NHMRC CRE Birthing in Our Community. Her other research and project work includes working with Aboriginal Community Organisations in Birth on Country services, child protection services, Cultural Healing models and education pathways for Aboriginal people.

She has recently returned from Walgett AMS where she and two colleagues worked on behalf of Newcastle University to supplement the COVID vaccination workforce.

Nikki Trudgett 

Nikki Trudgett

General Manager - Aboriginal Health & Wellbeing

Western NSW Primary Health Network

Nikki Trudgett is a proud Wiradjuri Woman and mother from Bathurst NSW with strong links to the Beemunnel mission on the outskirts of Warren NSW. Nikki is the General Manager of Aboriginal Health and Wellbeing, a newly created position within the PHN that demonstrates their commitment to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and their health. Within the Western NSW Primary Health Network Nikki supports close to 2/3rd of NSW from Bathurst to the West, North and South to each border.

Before joining the PHN Nikki lead the Indigenous Health Success Team as a part of Three Rivers University Department of Rural Health focusing on supporting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people into University degrees in health and supporting them along their journey. Having worked both in Health and Education Nikki is passionate about bridging the gap between the two systems and cultivating an environment that will see Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people grow and thrive with access to the highest quality of care regardless of their status or location.

Rachael McPhail 

Rachael McPhail

Student Panel member

Rachael McPhail is a proud Gomeroi woman, who now lives on Wiradjuri Country in Coolamon, and is in her final year of a Bachelor of Social Work through Charles Sturt University.

Rachael works for the Disability Trust as Project Manager – Reconciliation Action Plan, supporting the organisation in the development of their Reflect RAP, and working to inspire cultural change and embedding a First Nations perspective in all areas of practice.

Rachael was successful in her campaign to ask Australia Post to include traditional place names in addresses. She is now campaigning for the creation of a database of traditional place names that has been verified by Elders and community leaders, and can be cross referenced for postcode to allow for accurate use of place names in addresses.


NACCHO (National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation) is the national body representing 143 Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisations across Australia. NACCHO has developed COVID-19 resources to help promote healthy messaging and stopping the spread in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities. These resources can be found here: https://www.naccho.org.au/

The Aboriginal Health and Medical Research Council (AHMRC) also have resources designed for use in First Nations communities. They can be accessed here: https://www.ahmrc.org.au/health-topic/covid-19/

Donations/support for organisations working on the ground:

The AHMRC are accepting donations to assist on the ground. Donate at https://www.ahmrc.org.au/donate/

NACCHO have advised that people could do the following:
* Contact your local Aboriginal Health Service or Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Service and ask them how you can help by either donating money or goods and services, or volunteering in some way (depending on skills required)
* Contact NACCHO by email at accountant@naccho.org.au to enquire about a donation

Maari Ma Health Aboriginal Corporation are on the ground in Wilcannia, coordinating not only the health response but also assisting community members in quarantine or unable to leave their homes to access essential supplies. To ensure the service isn't overwhelmed and to make a donation to Maari Ma, please contact Charles Sturt's Office of First Nations Engagement for information on how to donate.

Venue / Address:

Contact Phone:
Contact Email: