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Local WA Prevention and Recovery Initiatives Celebrated by Injury Matters

The 2021 Injury Matters Injury Prevention and Safety Promotion Awards Breakfast on Thursday 25 March showcased the amazing work that is being done to prevent and reduce the impact of injury within Western Australia. People from across WA came together to celebrate their achievements and acknowledge the leading injury prevention and recovery work happening in WA.   

2021 Injury Matters Injury Prevention and Safety Promotion Award Winners: 

Outstanding Achievement in Injury Prevention or Safety Promotion 
Royal Life Saving Society WA, Keep Watch Program. 

The Royal Life Saving Society of WA delivers the statewide toddler drowning prevention program, Keep Watch, to provide parents and carers of children under the age of 5 with information about toddler drowning risks and prevention strategies. Incorporating a number of strategies, including; mass media, social media, water safety presentations, promotional events, training, resources and stakeholder professional development sessions, the four Keep Watch messages (Supervise, Restrict, Teach and Respond) are communicated.

Drowning is the leading cause of preventable death in children aged 0–4 years in Australia and toddlers have a greater risk of both fatal and non-fatal drowning than any other age group. However, due to WA’s pool fencing legislation and the efforts of the Keep Watch program, in the 2019-20 financial year WA recorded zero toddler drowning deaths for the first time, since records began being collected on fatal drowning incidents in the 1980’s.

Outstanding Achievement in Injury Recovery 
Black Swan Health, Men of Hope. 

With a vision of “Get In, Get Healthy, Get Strong and Get Going”, Men of Hope aims to address social isolation among at-risk men by providing participants with an opportunity to regularly connect in an informal and safe setting. Men experiencing mental health and wellbeing issues can lack the support network needed to make positive changes in their lives, resulting in a sense of hopelessness, a loss of connectedness with their community and a lack of purpose, which is why Men of Hope was established. 

Conducting activities based on the Recovery Model, Men of Hope supports participants to build relationships, build self-esteem and exercise self-care. By building bridges back from being marginalised by society, the Men of Hope initiative works to restore self-worth and purpose for all participants. 

Outstanding Achievement in Influencing Injury Policy or Practice 
Collaboration for Evidence, Research and Impact in Public Health at Curtin University and the Royal Life Saving Society of Western Australia, Make the Right Call research project. 

For the past nine years, researchers from the Collaboration for Evidence, Research and Impact in Public Health (CERIPH), at Curtin University, have collaborated with the Royal Life Saving Society of Western Australia (RLSSWA) to explore a range of issues associated with fatal and non-fatal drowning research and evaluation. This partnership has strengthened the relationship between research and practice, helping to identify real-world problems and improve practice outcomes.

Most recently, CERIPH and RLSSWA have investigated the underserved and emerging issue of the prevention of drowning amongst older people. Using a three stage, mixed-methods approach CERIPH and RLSSWA have explored the factors associated with drowning and water safety amongst older adults living in Western Australia and utilised the findings to inform the development of the new RLSSWA ‘Make the Right Call’ public education campaign for Western Australian’s aged 45 years and over.

Outstanding Achievement Empowering WA to Prevent Injury or Support Recovery 
Royal Perth Hospital, Prevent Alcohol and Risk-related Trauma in Youth Program. 

The Prevent Alcohol and Risk-Related Trauma in Youth (P.A.R.T.Y.) Program provides an avenue for Western Australian high school students to experience the journey of a trauma patient from a hospital’s Emergency Department, Intensive Care Unit and Trauma Wards, and for trauma survivors to share the story behind their injuries. By promoting injury prevention through reality education, the P.A.R.T.Y Program enables youth to recognise risk, make informed choices and learn about potential traumatic consequences. 

Since its implementation in 2006, the P.A.R.T.Y. Program has been delivered in Albany, Bunbury, Busselton, Geraldton, Kalgoorlie, Katanning, Midland and Perth to over 19,000 students. Additionally, 11,000 students and community members have attended a mobile outreach version of the program to increase the reach of the program and support progress towards zero deaths and injuries on WA roads. 

Outstanding Achievement in Collaboration for a Safer WA 
Holyoake Wheatbelt Community Alcohol & Drug Service, The WCADS Prevention Team. 

The Holyoake Wheatbelt Community Alcohol & Drug Service’s Prevention Team assist and support over 100 communities and 30 local governments throughout the Wheatbelt. Guided by state and national evidence-based frameworks and strategies the team conduct a number of injury prevention initiatives, including; the delivery of training developing suicide prevention and alcohol and other drug management plans, maintaining the Wheatbelt Professionals Wellbeing Portal and providing postvention support to people impacted by suicide.

The majority of work done by the WCADS Prevention Team is done in collaboration with regional or place-based partners. These collaborative activities, alongside the strong inter-agency networks have contributed to significant improvements in safety within the Wheatbelt region. 

Outstanding Achievement in Injury Prevention or Recovery Support Within Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Communities 
South West Aboriginal Medical Service, Barang Koorliny (Get Moving) Program.

In 2019, the South West Aboriginal Medical Service developed and delivered Barang Koorliny (Get Moving) workshops, to educate local Aboriginal people of the importance of strength, balance and physical activity to prevent falls. The program was developed in consultation with local Elder groups and guided by evidence from existing programs that are attended by the target demographic.

Barang Koorliny was delivered by a multidisciplinary team, including local health promotion professionals, podiatrists, and exercise physiologists, to increase awareness of local services and reinforce that falls are preventable. During the sessions participants were educations about the risk factors for falls and participated in a group exercise program that focused on improving participants strength and balance. 

Outstanding Achievement by a Local Government in Injury Prevention or Recovery Support 
City of Kwinana and the South Metropolitan Health Service, The Kwinana Falls Prevention Project. 

The Kwinana Falls Prevention Project was a collaborative project facilitated by the City of Kwinana and the South Metropolitan Health Service in 2020. Due to falls being the leading injury-related cause of hospitalisation in City of Kwinana residents aged 45 years and over, the project aimed to increase older adult’s knowledge and awareness of falls prevention strategies that they can easily incorporate into daily routines.

Supported by local health professionals and services, the project involved a series of workshops that focused on the modifiable risk factors to prevent falls, including medicine management, strength and balance exercises and healthy nutrition. The project was well received, with participants reporting increased knowledge of risk factors for falls and confidence to complete falls prevention behaviours.

Injury Matters Injury Prevention Safety Promotion Awards 2021

The 2021 Injury Matters Injury Prevention and Safety Promotion Awards finalists were reflective of the breadth and diversity of injury in WA, with initiatives focusing on a range of injury topics and across different levers of influence, from grassroots initiatives through to policy changes.   

Injury Matters would like to congratulate all of this year’s award winners and finalists for their contribution to creating a safer WA.  

For more information or photo’s please contact Ashleigh Kostecki, Injury Matters Communications & Marketing Coordinator on (08) 6166 7688.