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|Title:||The role of family and community resilience in Indigenous wellbeing.|
|Publisher:||University of Sydney.|
Indigenous Health Studies
|Abstract:||The alarming rates of ill-health and social disadvantage amongst Australian Indigenous peoples has continued despite improved understanding of the determinants behind these conditions. There appears to be an urgent need to review and re-orientate health and social programs, from a deficit-focused to a strengths-based model, whereby a community’s capacity and resilience is enhanced utilising, and building on, existing strengths and resources. The current study set out to investigate the meaning and role of resilience in the wellbeing of Indigenous Australians. The aim of the study was to examine resilience within an Indigenous context, its potential role in strengthening the Indigenous response to adversity, and the prospective ways in which this may be used in initiatives aimed at boosting health and wellbeing in Indigenous communities. The study involved qualitative in-depth interviews and focus groups within the Indigenous Yaegl community of north-eastern New South Wales. This was achieved through extensive consultation with the community, and a strong commitment to upholding cultural sensitivities and ethical considerations. The data was analysed using a phenomenological framework, involving objective and in-depth thematic analysis, with specific focus on the relationships within the data and their associations with the research questions posed. The study indicates the resilience of the Yaegl community, involving individual, family and community level resilience, involves interdependent protective factors and support structures. The experience of hardship itself, and the ability to employ positive adaptational/coping skills and recruit a variety of protective resources are key to the development of resilience throughout the life continuum. The study demonstrates the importance of these mechanisms not only at the individual level, but also in the resilience of family units and the community. This appears particularly important within the Indigenous context where these levels of functioning are interdependently connected. The study has implications for health and social practitioners looking to broaden their understanding of the Indigenous experience, to one that acknowledges the many existing strengths and protective factors present in Indigenous communities. Practitioners and program developers would benefit from utilising this holistic model of resilience, in which individual, family and community based protective factors play important roles in the prevention of risk and the development of resilience. Programs incorporating this understanding are expected to be more effective in both service delivery and outcomes, because all levels of functioning would be viewed and addressed as interdependent elements in the development of resilience and response to adversity.|
|Description:||Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)|
|Rights and Permissions:||The author retains copyright of this thesis.|
|Type of Work:||PhD Doctorate|
|Appears in Collections:||Sydney Digital Theses (Open Access)|
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|PhD_VMclennan_2009_part1.pdf||Part 1||2.06 MB||Adobe PDF||View/Open|
|PhD_VMclennan_2009_part2.pdf||Part 2||5.67 MB||Adobe PDF||View/Open|
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