Keynote: Trauma-aware and healing-informed healing
Healing enables people to address distress, overcome trauma, and restore wellbeing.
Ways to support healing include reconnecting with culture, strengthening identity, restoring safe and enduring relationships, and supporting communities to understand the impact that their experiences have had on their behaviour and create change.
Healing occurs at a community, family, and individual level. Healing continues throughout a person’s lifetime and across generations. International best practice in healing involves combining traditional Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultural healing practices with western methodologies.
Trauma-aware, healing- informed practice is a strengths-based approach to healing that is guided by an understanding of, and responsiveness to, the impacts of trauma.
Healing programs must be co-designed with communities to understand their unique healing needs and aspirations to create sustainable change.
The work of The Healing Foundation combines Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture and knowledge with best practice western trauma theory.
When we restore culture – the things that keep us safe and well and happy – when we prioritise these and connect more closely with our Stolen Generations survivors and their descendants, we are better able to heal.
We need increased focus on positive programs that keep people healthy rather than only targeting them at crisis point.
When these programs are trauma-aware and healing-informed, our people are better able to live their lives from a place of strength rather than from a place of distress.