Challenge to Bourke

The “Challenge to Bourke” held in January 2016, follows on from the July 2015 Challenge to Bourke Conference – the challenge being for Bourke residents to reduce their intake of alcohol and other drugs and reduce the incidents of crime in the community.

The Challenge to Bourke is an initiative of the Bourke Aboriginal Health Service (BAHS) in partnership with Murdi Paaki Drug & Alcohol Network (MPDAN) and other agencies such as 2CUZ FM, Mission Australia, Bourke Women’s Safe House, Darling LAC, Western NSW Local Health District and the Bourke Aboriginal community.

The Challenge to Bourke took a community development health promotion approach by facilitating diversional activities in the local community where people could engage in culturally-appropriate occupation and access education about alcohol and other drugs. Activities included: Paperbark workshops; Mindfulness Meditation; Men’s Yarning Group; Breathalyser tests at the Port O’ Bourke Hotel and the Bourke Bowling Club; Encaustic Wax Art Workshops; Aboriginal Weaving Workshops; Movie night & BBQ at the Bourke Swimming Pool.

Congratulations to Michelle Goodwyn, MPDAN D&A Counsellor at BAHS for all her hard work in coordinating the Challenge to Bourke, January 2016.

Events and activities were well attended and around 1, 500 individual D&A health promotion resources were distributed in Bourke during January. Anecdotal feedback from agencies and the community so far has been positive and encouraging.

De-briefing and the outcomes of evaluation are to follow when full health and crime statistics are available

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