A timeline / history of Aboriginal Health Workers and Aboriginal community workers NT 1870 – 2013
The original 2007 poster, A timeline history of Aboriginal Health Workers and Aboriginal Community Workers NT has now been updated to 2013. It can and can be ordered online and continuous PDF updates are posted online.
This updated timeline spans 143 years, from 1870 – 2013, from early NT colonisation to the present day in terms of health community service and public policy. It honours the names and events that shaped both NT and Australia wide health and community services. This timeline was first developed by Kathy Abbott AM AHW and Rosie Elliott out of their work together with the former Central Australian and Barkly AHW Association.
It is a unique story telling and history machine, recording and celebrating the achievements of generations of NT Aboriginal Health Workers, child and family community workers and educators. The popularity of the first 2007 edition meant they soon were out of print and most agencies found their copies were souvenired! Kathy and Rosie received many requests for more copies.
This timeline poster builds up community and workforce capacity through people in telling their own stories. These stories are recorded as people informed us, it is a living oral history. There may be errors and omissions, but more than that there are stories here that are otherwise unrecorded. This story covers the community controlled services, mission and community council services and the departmental health services. It puts the pioneer registered NT Health Worker movement in the wider national context and in honours the partnerships with other parts of the health workforce, and recognises the parallels with other parts of the Aboriginal education and child and family services sector workforce.
Second edition 2013: A timeline / history of Aboriginal Health Workers and Aboriginal community workers NT 1870 – 2007
The second edition of the timeline was launched in May 2014 in Alice Springs at CARHDS, the Central Australian Remote Health Development Service. The launch was presided over by Chair of the Central Land Council Maurie Ryan and AMSANT CEO John Patterson.
Over 2000 copies were distributed free throughout the NT. Thanks also to The Yothu Yindi Foundation who funded the printing of a 5 metre long banner of the poster and supported its distribution at the Garma Festival 2014.
First edition 2007: A timeline / history of Aboriginal Health Workers and Aboriginal community workers NT 1870 – 2007
- Over 2000 copies of the first edition of A History of Aboriginal Health Workers and Aboriginal Community Workers NT 1970–2007 were distributed NT wide in early 2007 free of charge to NT health services, schools, councils, women’s centres, children services, educational organisations and policy makers.
- The April 2007 poster was launched by the NT Minister for Health Dr Chris Burns. The timeline was later inducted into NT Parliament at the First Cabinet meeting in Alice Springs by Minister Karl Hampton MLA.
- The Aboriginal and Islander Health Worker Journal republished it and sent it to their national readership (May/June 2007, Vol 31 – Number 3).
The authors thank Black Wattle Consulting, which is managing and publishing the updated timeline. We also thank Centrecorp Foundation, Northern Territory Medicare Local and Yeperenye Shopping Centre who have kindly agreed to fund some of the printing and development costs to update this history timeline.
We also thank the Centre for Remote Health and Cooperative Research Centre for Aboriginal Health for their financial assistance in printing the 2007 edition and the AIHW Journal for their long and continued support in promoting and hosting this story on their web site, and we thank the very many other contributors for their time and patience. We note their names below.
Please contact us about new names and events and your corrections for future editions of the timeline.
About the authors
Kathy / Kathleen Abbott AM AHW
Former President of the Central Australian and Barkly Aboriginal Health Workers Association, Foundation Chair of the National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Worker Association (NATSIHWA), Kathy Abbott was named co-patron of the NT 2011 Year of the Aboriginal Health Worker. At the launch event celebrating the year, Aboriginal Medical Services Alliance Northern Territory (AMSANT) chair said ‘Kathy Abbott is an Arrernte woman who was a trailblazer in Aboriginal health in Central Australia, being recruited by Trevor Cutter in the early 1970s. She was one of Central Australian Aboriginal Congress’ first Aboriginal Health Workers, and went on to become a leading educator of new Aboriginal Health Workers through the Health Department. Kathy remains active as one of the Territory’s most senior Aboriginal Health Workers …. an inspiration to new members of the Aboriginal Health Worker profession…’ Kathleen received Member of the Order of Australia in 2015 recognition of her tireless work in the field of Aboriginal health, and was made a Member of the Order of Australia (AM) Kathy works as a consultant with Black Wattle Consulting.
Rosie is a director of Black Wattle Consulting. She develops resources, communications and organisational tools. Her previous work history includes service and resource development with the Secretariat of National Aboriginal and Islander Child Care (SNAICC) – (Through Young Black Eyes Facilitators Guide, You’re A Dad and Talking Up Our Strengths cards, SNAICC Newsletter); for the NT Department of Health and Community Services Office of Children and Families (Kids Tracks newsletters); AMSANT – Aboriginal Medical Services Alliance (An analysis of health services in the Darwin Health Zone); the NT Remote Workforce Agency (Primary Health Care Workforce update); and with the Central Australian and Barkly Aboriginal Health Workers Association (A timeline / history of Aboriginal Health Workers & Aboriginal community workers 1870 – 2007). Rosie has qualifications in sociology and biomedical science.
Black Wattle Consulting
Black Wattle Consulting develops print and online resources. We specialise in cross-cultural work and have extensive experience working with Aboriginal communities. We work mostly in child and family; and the health and disability sectors. We develop resources using our skills in graphic design, community consultation, research and policy. Black Wattle Consulting is a not-for-profit company, and timeline author Rosie Elliott is one of the directors.
PDF image of the first edition 2007 [667KB]: A history of Aboriginal Health Workers and Aboriginal Community Workers in the Northern Territory 1870–2007. You will need to use the magnify tool in your PDF viewer to navigate this very long poster (1040 cm x 440 cm). Note ou cannot print a full sized legible poster from a standard printer.
People contacted in developing the timeline (2007 and 2013 editions inclusive):
Special thanks to: Dayalan Devanesen, Esther Rose Seaton, Harry Sing and Kathy McMahon.
Thanks also to: Adam Harwood, Adrienne Boucher, Agnes McGrath, Alex Hope, Alan Haines, Allan Randall, Anne Gardener, Anunciata Dartinga, Barbara Dhamany, Barbara Kelly, Barbara Pitman, Barbara Tynan, Ben Halls, Bernie Shields, Bob Durnan, Bonny Moss, Brian Reid, Bruce Alcorn, Bruce Simmons, Carol Jobson, Carole Taylor, Carol Ward, Cathy Wilson, Cathryn Philips, Ceinwen Grose, Chadwick Koimala, Charlie Hodgson, Clive Rosewarne, Cyndi Cole, Cynthia Ah Mat, David Thomas, Damien Howard, Daniel Horwood, David Lines, David Thomas, Dave Richardson, Dawn Daly, Dawn Ross, Dean Niehsner, Debbie Ersewell, Denise Mayers, Des McKenzie, Diane Clark, Diane Stokes, Doug Rosas, Douglas Josif, Edward Tilton, Eileen Cummings, Eileen Moseley, Francie Turner, Gabby Friel, Gareth Lewis, Garry Scapin, Graham Dowling, Graham Symons, Graham Castine, Graeme Rossiter, Gwen Wally, Gwenda Lawton, Harry Sing, Harvey Creswell, Helen Crawford, Helen Matthews, Howard Bath, Ian Butt, Ian White, IATSIS, Irene Ogilvie, Iris Raye, Jean Ah Chee, Jean Loke, Jeff Baxter, Jeff Hulcombe, Jill Lake, Jill Wright, Jo Townsend, Jo Wright, John Condon, John Hargrave, John Tomlinson, Josie Crawshaw, Judy McKay, Karen Ah Mat, Karen Haywood, Karrina Demasi, Kate Race, Kathy McMahon, Kathy Paterson, Ken O’Brien, Keomi Braun, Kerry Gardiner, Lee Rosas, Lee-Anne J Simms, Lesley Taylor, Linda Bunn, Linda Turner, Linda Zerna, Lorraine Johns, Louise Dennis, Lorna Fejo, Luke Morcom, Marion Scrymgour, Marita Hope, Marjorie Patterson, Maxine Haines, Mick Meyers, Murray Garde, Nancy Jeffrey, Natasha Newman, Nathan Aucote, Nicola Slavin, Penny Philips, Pat Anderson, Pat Braun, Patrick Ah Kit, Peta Romeyn, Peter Pangquee, RDH Librarians, Raelene Wing, Richard Hunt, Richard Nelson, Rose Graham, Rosemary Plummer, Teresa Raine, Richard Hunt, Richard Trudgen, Rob Curry, Robin Lion, Roger Brailsford, Rose Rhodes, Sabina Knight, Sarah Brown, Sean Bowden, Shane Houston, Sharon Wallace, Stephan Rainow, Stephanie Bell, Stephanie Yikaniwui, Sven Silburn, Ted Egan, Teresa Reins, Theresa Roe, Tracker Tilmouth, Trish Angus, Yvonne Mitjarrandi
Please contact us about any of these matters.
Download PDFs of timeline
These posters are over 1metre long and cannot be printed at readable resolution on a desktop printer: