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Burswood on Swan

1 Camfield Drive

Burswood, WA 6100


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This premier event is the culmination of our four-year Partnerships Research Project at Murdoch University funded by the NHMRC to investigate the diversity of cultural needs of Aboriginal women during pregnancy and birthing and the extent to which urban maternity services in WA respond to those needs.

Birthing on Country ensures a spiritual connection to land for Aboriginal mothers and their babies and was
highlighted in the National Maternity Services Plan. When this project began in 2011, 32% of Aboriginal women giving birth in WA did so in a metropolitan maternity service. Many of those women identified as Noongar and hence, birthed on Country. Others were transferred for maternity care and hence, birthed off Country.

A key feature of the research project has been our collaboration between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal investigators, Aboriginal community and maternity sector advisers and maternity sector partners for evidence to inform translatable outcomes to state and national policy and practice to ensure Aboriginal women receive culturally secure maternity services when Birthing On and Off Country. Our researchers yarned with Aboriginal women, including Elders and senior women to hear about contemporary and traditional cultural birthing rights, values and expectations; and interviewed clinical midwives, midwifery students, educators and managers to hear about their understanding of and preparation to support Aboriginal women’s cultural needs during childbearing.

The research findings advise maternity sector practice and policy to promote cultural security in maternity settings and inform national accreditation policies for a culturally competent midwifery workforce.

The event will focus on three themes across the 3 days:

Day 1 of the symposium - 9th April, 8:30am-4:30pm:

  • Birthing on Noongar Boodjar project findings that reflect on Maternity Care for Aboriginal Women and their Families will be presented by the research team

  • The morning Keynote Presenter on 9th April is Ms Lesley Nelson, CEO of South West Aboriginal Medical Service

Day 2 of the symposium - 10th April, 8:30am-4:30pm:

  • Specific findings of Cultural Security in Maternity Care will be presented

  • The morning Keynote Presenter is Professor Juli Coffin, Head of Aboriginal Research Programs and Partnerships, Kimberley University Rural Health Alliance (Broome) and Notre Dame University Fremantle

  • A Rountable discussion on Cultural Security in Maternity Care will be facilitated in the afternoon

Day 2 of the symposium - 10th April, 5:00pm-6:00pm: Sundowner

Day 3 of the symposium - 11th April, 8:30am-4:30pm:

  • Specific findings on Maternity Workforce will be presented

  • Keynote Presenter on 11th April is Ms Janine Mohamed, CEO of the Congress of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Nurses and Midwives

  • A Rountable discussion on Maternity Workforce will be facilitated in the afternoon

PLEASE NOTE: This is an invitation only event and places are limited.

Register for the full 3 day conference attendance by COB on 12th March.


Register for one or more of the days with your theme of interest by COB on 12th March.

PLEASE: remember to also register for the Sundowner by COB on 12th March as places are limited.

Parking for this event is free in the parking areas adjacent to the venue. This area is limited. If that parking area is full, please park in the free street bays in Camfield Drive or in other parking areas located in Camfield Drive.

Please note: No childcare will be provided.

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Burswood on Swan

1 Camfield Drive

Burswood, WA 6100


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