Testimonials – 2018

My love of midwifery began more than 35 years ago and I am currently studying the Graduate Diploma in Midwifery at La Trobe University. I have always wanted to work with and care for women prior to, during and after pregnancy in a holistic, woman centered manner.

In Melbourne, the 3 major maternity hospitals have started a trial program (Group Midwifery Practice 1:1 Care for Aboriginal women). In May, I am able to apply to be a part of that program for the remainder of my Graduate Diploma in Midwifery which will aide me in becoming familiar with caring for ATSI women who are pregnant. This is a passion of mine. I would like to be a part of the group of midwives who reduce the disparity in maternal and neonatal morbidity and mortality.

By Awarding me this scholarship, you will be assisting my progression in becoming a midwife.

Kylie Cowley

Category A Scholarship Recipient, 2018

I am a proud Indigenous woman originally from Alice Springs. I am currently a third year Midwifery student studying “away from base” at the Australian Catholics University. I live in a remote town called Wickham in Western Australia. The local hospital does not have the facilities or resources to practise my clinical skills and conduct my clinical placements. In order to continue to develop and progress through my degree I have to travel interstate for my compulsory University blocks and clinical placements. This has had a massive financial impact on my family, however I am determined to complete my degree and excel in my midwifery career.

The scholarship will financially support me to complete my University degree and assist me to continue to travel interstate for blocks and clinical placements. It will also assist in the purchase of University material and uniforms. The financial assistance will allow me to complete this last year of my midwifery degree in 2018, and enable me to practice as a Registered Midwife in 2019, supporting our Aboriginal women and families throughout the pregnancy continuum.

Mariah McGill

Category A Scholarship Recipient, 2018

Currently at the hospital I work at, we have the highest Indigenous birth rate in NSW, however there are no Indigenous midwives employed in the health service. I find this a really big motivator to complete my studies and continue working here in my home community, to make positive changes to the workplace culture and towards my community.

This scholarship will help support me to complete my studies through helping take the financial burden of attending compulsory residential school in Wagga Wagga. I would also like to attend the 2018 CATSINaM conference being held in Adelaide this year to be able to connect with other Indigenous nurses and midwives.

Maiysha Craig

Category A Scholarship Recipient, 2018

As an Aboriginal woman, I identify with the Wakka Wakka and Bigambul First Nation People.

I am currently enrolled in the Bachelor of Midwifery at Griffith University, Logan campus. The reason I chose to do midwifery, was because of the gap in our healthcare system for women in remote and rural communities who do not have the opportunity of Birthing on Country. The infant and maternal mortality rates in Aboriginal and Torres Strait islander communities are unacceptably high.

The financial support offered through this scholarship will enable me to complete my full time study at University, whilst providing for my family as a single mother.

After the successful completion of this degree, I will move back home to my home community Cherbourg and be a part of the Closing the Gap and providing women with culturally appropriate midwifery care.

Monique Hamilton

Category A Scholarship Recipient, 2018

I am a proud Ngarrindjeri woman from the South Australian Coorong region. I was raised in the rural city of Murray Bridge and this was ultimately the beginnings of an insight into the restrictions that come with health care when living in a rural and remote area. It begun the passion that drives me now to give back to the rural and remote Indigenous population. I am currently enrolled in a Bachelor of Midwifery through the University of Australia, I have successfully completed my first year of the three year degree and am now in my second year.

My goal is to work in remote Aboriginal Communities throughout Australia. I aspire to provide communities a comprehensive and skilled service where I can support and provide appropriate health services from many angles and give what cannot be easily accessed in close proximity of communities.

This scholarship will enable me to utilise resources to support the completion of the lengthy placements required to finish my studies.

Emily Sparrow

Category A Scholarship Recipient, 2018

I am currently a first year student at the University of Newcastle studying Midwifery. Although I have just begun my degree, this has been an aspiration of mine for some time. I am very motivated to not only complete the degree, but to attain a high grade average.

This scholarship will be a great support financially, as the clinical nature of my midwifery degree provides little time for paid work.

I love the diverse nature of midwifery, and I absolutely relish in the relational aspect of the profession. Helping and empowering people is what I love to do.

Cindy F

Category A Scholarship Recipient, 2018

I am in my final year of my Bachelor of Midwifery degree at the Australian Catholic University in Brisbane. I live in Brisbane, and I am of Aboriginal background, descending from the Gudjal tribe of the Charters Towers region.

My love of midwifery began when I started working as a Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Maternal Infant Health Worker with the Mater Mothers Hospital. As a Maternal Infant Health Worker, I worked closely alongside an amazing continuity care group of midwives- and I thought I would love to be an Aboriginal midwife and provide support and empowerment to my fellow Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women.

In 2016 I had my third child, and was privileged to be a part of the continuity of care model with the midwives I worked with, and they cared for me throughout my pregnancy, birth and postnatal period. It was being a part of this model of care, I knew this was how every woman should have the opportunity to birth with, a known midwife of a group of midwives.

This scholarship will help ease the financial pressure placed on myself and family, as I complete my studies, and will also allow me to attend some courses through the Australian College of Midwives.

Kyleigh Brown-Lolohea

Category A Scholarship Recipient, 2018

Midwifery and Nursing for me, has been about “giving back” to community. To assist my community in a proactive way, that is looking after health (primary care), caring for the aged (respecting our Elders) and those with mental health, but mostly about bringing life into the world and providing education to ensure babies have the best start in life.

Midwifery has been a passion of mine since an early age, and the scholarship will allow me to focus on my studies without the financial burden. It will allow me to successfully complete my postgradute degree and then I can give knowledge back to my community by assisting in the education of student nurses, by providing education on Aboriginal people and communities.

I would like to assist Aboriginal students with choosing nursing and midwifery as a career. After a solid career in a variety of nursing roles, I would then like to move to community nursing, especially community midwifery and child health. This is what I believe could make the biggest difference, as educating the families and their children about health, could change generations, in particular our Aboriginal communities.

With the assistance of this scholarship, I will be able to carry out my goal by continuing in my degree successfully.

Lilly Collard

Category A Scholarship Recipient, 2018

I have been working in the midwifery field as a student midwife/ Registered Nurse, since February 2018, and I absolutely love it. It is everything I hoped it would be, and more. I love being able to care for women and their babies.

Since gaining a position in the Midstart Midwifery program, I have allocated a significant amount of time each week to study and complete assignments, attend University residential school, work in the hospital 0.8per fortnight and dedicate time to my 8 continuity of care women. This has been challenging as I am studying University via distance education, but becoming a midwife is something that I am very passionate about and committed to and will do whatever I need to do, to excel in this career, as this is my top priority at this point in my life.

This scholarship will support me financially to continue studying this degree, which will allow me to make a positive contribution to the Indigenous community by being an active participant in making Indigenous women feel safe and empowered throughout their child birthing experience.

Tamara Glumbic

Category A Scholarship Recipient, 2018

I am a proud Gumbaynggir and South Sea Islander woman who grew up in Tweed Heads, NSW.  I am due to complete my midwifery studies at Southern Cross University, Gold Coast in November 2018.

Being a past successful applicant, I know how beneficial this scholarship is to my Midwifery studies. Last year the scholarship allowed me to take part in professional development, and also purchase text books and study materials that increased my knowledge and improve my midwifery practice. This year, the scholarship will eliminate the financial stress associated with University, so I can focus on strengthening my midwifery knowledge. The scholarship will also allow me to attend the 2018 CATSINaM Conference in South Australia. This conference always boosts my depth of understanding of Indigenous Health and the practices I can implement into my care when working with Indigenous women and their families.

Taneeka Hyatt

Category A Scholarship Recipient, 2018

I am currently working at the Frankston Hospital Peninsula Health in Victoria. I am recognised as Indigenous from Narrendjerri, in South Australia.  I have been a midwife for 6 years, and was lucky enough to complete my studies via the Puggy Hunter Scholarship.

The Rhodanthe fund scholarship will allow me to further my knowledge in the field of Midwifery by enabling me to attend a “Spinning Babies” workshop. This workshop looks as physiological aspects to assist natural birth by body manipulation and movement. By attending this work shop I will be able to benefit my workplace, as well as professional practice.

Danielle Cameron

Category B Scholarship Recipient, 2018

I am a proud Wamba Wamba woman from North West Victoria where I was born and raised in a town called Swan Hill.

I have been a midwife since 2008, and my midwifery career has given me endless opportunities. I have worked as a nurse in general medicine, district nursing and emergency care, as well as a clinical consultant in Midwifery. I’ve managed Koori maternity services in Aboriginal communities, been a policy advisor for State Goverment, a Practice Manager at an Aboriginal Primary Health care service, and now I am in a strategic advisory role at Monash Health, working on various projects including improving care for Aboriginal women and babies at our tertiary centre.

This scholarship will enable me to attend the 2019 Lowitja Institute International Indigenous Health and Wellbeing Conference, which is highly regarded and demonstrates best practice quality health care examples across Australia and abroad. This conference is a fantastic opportunity to network with other Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal Midwives and improve the work we do back home in our own communities.

Karinda Taylor

Category B Scholarship Recipient, 2018

I am in my 4th year of practice since graduating as Registered Midwife at the Royal Women’s Hospital in Melbourne. I also have been working for the last 14 months in a research role at La Trobe University, on a NHMRC funded partnership project exploring continuity of midwife care for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women in Victoria. In April his year, I submitted an application to enroll in a Master of Applied Science (research) focusing on the experiences and outcome if the women.

This scholarship will enable me to attend the annual CATSINaM conference in Adelaide, where I have been invited to present an update on the current status of my research project.

At each CATSINaM conference, the latest evidence and strategies to improve the health status of Australia’s Indigenous population are presented. I like to bring this knowledge back to my managers and colleagues, to help improve the care provided for First Nations women birthing at the Royal Women’s hospital. The knowledge I will gain from attending this conference will enhance my own midwifery practice too.

Pamela McCalman

Category B Scholarship Recipient, 2018

A am a Registered Midwife, working at the Royal Women’s Hospital in Melbourne.

In my role at the Royal Women’s Hospital, I work closely with women from all backgrounds, but particularly with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander mothers and families.

This scholarship will allow me to attend the 2018 CATSINaM conference in Adelaide. Attending this conference will allow me to gain more knowledge and information about what approaches are being made to improve the outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and how I can work to integrate that into my daily practice.

This conference will provide inspiration for me to continue my Midwifery career with passion and enable me to refocus my drive for helping our people to access and receive the best care available. It will also allow me to bring back information to my workplace in the hope to make positive changes to current practices and ensure that I continue to strive to achieve the best practice for all patients that I care for. I will also have the opportunity to meet with other professionals who are working towards the same goals and to maintain contact with them for future career endeavors that I take on and for ongoing support: personally, professionally and culturally.

Tanisha Springall

Category B Scholarship Recipient, 2018

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