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We Care hosts first Sista Circle program

Eleven female participants of We Care's Sista Circle program standing outdoors by the river smiling

We Care’s Sista Circle program offers a unique experience for First Nations women to engage in cultural activities, build community connections, and strengthen their mental health and wellbeing. 

Eleven female participants of We Care's Sista Circle program standing outdoors by the river smiling

Our partner and Aboriginal owned not-for-profit, We Care, hosted its Sista Circle program this week offering female Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander participants and staff members across the Hunter Region the opportunity to connect with one another and their culture over a three-day program. 

Collaborating with Wonnarua (Maitland), Awabakal (Newcastle), and Worimi (Port Stephens) community members, We Care has designed the Sista Circle program to offer culturally appropriate and informed support. The program, led by Aboriginal healer Kellie Forrest, follows the success of We Care's Yarn Up Connecting Countries programs for Aboriginal youth and men last year. 

The program represents a culturally and clinically integrated response to the mental health issues facing the First Nations community. In Australia, deaths by suicide are a leading cause of preventable death for Aboriginal peoples. Shockingly, First Nations peoples are also twice as likely to die by suicide than non-Indigenous Australians. 

During the three-day program, participants engaged in activities to promote a sense of connection to self, community, culture, and Country. This included ceremonial smoking and an Aboriginal art workshop led by Cate McHughes from Mob Art Therapy. 

The original Yarn Up Connecting Countries program targeted Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander men aged between 18-35. With our continued funding support, the program has since expanded to Aboriginal youth aged between 13-18, and now to Aboriginal women, addressing local community needs.

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