In this Sleep Seminar Series, Dr Moira Junge is joined by A Prof Yaqoot Fatima, and Kalkatungu/Kalkadoon woman, Roslyn Von Senden, in a discussion about First Nations sleep health.
Associate Professor Fatima is a Pharmacist, Epidemiologist, Sleep Scientist, and the Research Lead of the “Let’s Yarn About Sleep” program. Fatima's research aims to reduce the societal burden of poor sleep and associated health issues through coordinated multidisciplinary, translational research and co-designed programs and service models. She is nationally recognised for leadership in co-designing sleep health programs, workforce training frameworks and service delivery models to improve sleep health care in First Nations communities.
In response to community-identified needs and service gaps, A/Prof Fatima partnered with community members and service providers to co-develop a "ground-up" sleep health movement now known as the Let’s Yarn About Sleep (LYAS) program. The partnership discussions were initiated in late 2018 and involved extensive discussion with community Elders and key stakeholders from the partner organisations. These discussions helped understand partners' priorities, facilitated a shared understanding of decision-making processes, identified knowledge and resource-sharing strategies, and underpinned the program's co-development. The LYAS program has significantly improved community awareness and appreciation of sleep health and created pathways for sleep health integration for effective prevention and management of chronic conditions.
The LYAS program is transforming the way the sleep health needs of First Nations peoples are assessed and addressed. The program innovation lies in building local capacity, privileging First Nations voices, empowering end-users, integrating two-world views, interdisciplinary expertise, and diverse research methodologies. These efforts resulted in the UQ-led delivery of Australia’s first Indigenous Sleep Coach training, research roles for community members, and integration of sleep health programs in remote schools and health services. The team is now collaborating with 11 communities to strengthen local capacity and capability for achieving sleep health equity and minimise the human, societal and economic costs associated with poor sleep. Furthermore, many other communities and services in Queensland have invited the team for workforce training and sleep health care for First Nations peoples.
Roslyn Von Senden is a Kalkatungu/Kalkadoon woman from Mount Isa, North-West Queensland and has Gangalidda, Garawa connections across Burketown in the Gulf of Carpentaria, Queensland with ancestral ties and connections. Roslyn is the Coordinator of Australia's first sleep health program for First Nation’s youth at the UQ Poche Centre for Indigenous Health - Lets Yarn About Sleep program - based in Mount Isa.
Roslyn is a teacher, leader, nurturer and carer of children, families and community. She has worked in various roles nationally, state-wide and locally, where she has advised on systems and designed and presented professional development programs. Roslyn is an advocate on human rights, social justice and the welfare and rights of children and Aboriginal peoples.
She is a qualified Early Childhood educator with more than 29 years in Early Childhood Education and Care across Australia and has worked with and in Aboriginal Community Services Sector and Social Services across the State of Queensland for over 30 years. Ros was the first Aboriginal woman Employed as a Manager at the Queensland Council of Social Service, where she led the Indigenous Professional Support Unit team to deliver across 76 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Communities across Queensland and became the National Spokesperson for the National Indigenous Professional Support Units for two years. Roslyn developed an innovative, visual strategic plan using Aboriginal metaphor, involved in Action Research and Evaluation project with SNAICC.
Currently, Roslyn is appointed on the Queensland Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Education and Training Advisory Committee and the National Redress Scheme - Community Engagement Officer, providing support to people who have experienced institutional child sexual abuse recommended by the Royal Commission into Institutional Response.
She is employed at Mount Isa Institute of TAFE - Teacher Children's Services, teaching Certificate 3 and Diploma of Children Services, with specific focus on regional childcare and remote centres.
She is a member of the Kalkadoon Tribal Council as a Cultural Coordinator, leading women's community groups and liaison regarding protected sites.