The Australian Indigenous Alcohol and Other Drugs Knowledge Centre (Knowledge Centre) is a national web resource that aims to support the alcohol and other drugs (AOD) workforce, health practitioners, researchers, academics, policy-makers, and community members, to reduce harmful AOD use in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities.
It provides free online access to evidence based and culturally appropriate knowledge-support and decision-support materials to help ‘close the gap’ in health between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and non-Indigenous Australians.
Workshop Coordinator, Avinna Trzesinski, has facilitated several workshops across Australia over the past two years at conferences and organisation visits. The workshops have reached Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Practitioners and/or Health Workers, Alcohol and Other Drugs Workers, Tobacco Action Workers, Social and Emotional Wellbeing and Mental Health Workers, as well as those working in clinical settings, primary health care, policy and research.
The workshop is a 90 minute interactive presentation that takes participants on a tour of the Knowledge Centre and its wide variety of online resources. Participants are shown how to easily access information on alcohol including fetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASD), tobacco, illicit drugs, prescription drugs, and volatile substances. The workshop shows participants how to use specific health workforce and community resources and are given tips on how to find what is relevant to their work, clients, families and communities.
During the workshops, practical tasks and case studies are undertaken to explore areas that people may not have been aware of. They are designed to familiarise participants with the Knowledge Centre by intentionally leading through the different pathways of website to give an idea of the depth and scope of what is available. Findings are shared among the group for discussion and added learning.
The workshop demonstrates the time-saving benefits of the Knowledge Centre and equips participants with the skills to obtain the AOD information needed to optimise their research and practice.
In 2017 workshops are being conducted in regional areas of Australia. The Knowledge Centre are also conducting free Webinars featuring guest presentations from experts in the AOD field.
This article was kindly provided by Avinna Trzesinski, Senior Research Officer at Australian Indigenous HealthInfoNet.