Following Prime Minister Kevin Rudd’s Apology to the Stolen Generations in February 2008, a commitment to Aboriginal Health was made by the Children, Youth & Women’s Health Service, including engaging with the Aboriginal community to identify what needed to be done.
Becky Hirst worked as part of the project team made up of Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal staff, who facilitated an engagement process based on the ‘Past, Present and Future’ which involved running highly sensitive meetings within the community. The meetings provided opportunity for Aboriginal people to share the stories of the past and help to shape a better health service in the future. Counsellors attended the meetings to be available for participants, and were well utilized.
The work went on to see the development of art work by an artist from Tauondi College representing the past, present and the future. An action plan was developed and adopted by the Executive department. The work inspired Becky to undertake a personal journey of reconciliation, later co-planning and co-facilitating with an Aboriginal colleague an event as part of Reconciliation Week providing insights in to reconciliation by non-Aboriginal women.