Our Councils and
Collaborative Networks

Our Councils and Collaborative Networks promote collective excellence by enabling Gayaa Dhuwi (Proud Spirit) Australia to be an inclusive, representative voice, leader, and advocate for system-wide change to the approach to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander social and emotional wellbeing, mental health, and suicide prevention that significantly and sustainable reduces Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander suicide rates and improves mental health.

Cultural Council and Clinical Council

Critical to the success of Gayaa Dhuwi (Proud Spirit) Australia’s work are two advisory councils that advise the Gayaa Dhuwi (Proud Spirit) Australia Board in relation to cultural and clinical issues and inform the work of the organisation as it pertains to social and emotional wellbeing, mental health, and suicide prevention among the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander population.

These Cultural and Clinical Councils promote collective excellence by enabling Gayaa Dhuwi (Proud Spirit) Australia to be a national inclusive representative voice, leader, and advocate for system-wide changes to approaches to Indigenous suicide prevention, social and emotional wellbeing, and mental health that significantly and sustainable reduce Indigenous suicide rates and improve mental health.

The purpose of these Councils is to provide sound advice to the Board in making decisions in terms of the Gayaa Dhuwi (Proud Spirit) Declaration’s ‘best of both worlds’ approach. This supports Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples’ choice of cultural and clinical treatment for health difficulties as the path to the best mental health outcomes.

All members are engaged in an advisory capacity to Gayaa Dhuwi (Proud Spirit) Australia. The Board reserves the right to consider all information provided and to act in the best interest of Gayaa Dhuwi (Proud Spirit) Australia.

Both Councils are made up of nine members – eight general members and one chair. It is important aspects such as gender balance (by self-identification, if at all) geographical location, and remote-urban parity are considered. However, as the Cultural Council and Clinical Council include individuals who contribute towards the collective excellence of Gayaa Dhuwi (Proud Spirit) Australia, these members should be reasonably connected across the country.

Members must be:
  • Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander
  • Experienced in cultural matters
  • Contribute to the balance of expertise represented by the Cultural Council
  • Extensively networked within the Indigenous community.

Collaborative Networks

Our five collaborative networks bring together a diverse group of people, evoking rich issues-based conversations, to inform our work and create broader opportunities to network and collaborate.

These collaborative networks promote collective excellence by enabling Gayaa Dhuwi (Proud Spirit) Australia to be a national inclusive representative voice, leader, and advocate for system-wide changes to approaches to Indigenous suicide prevention, social and emotional wellbeing, and mental health that significantly and sustainably reduce Indigenous suicide rates and improve mental health.

The collaborative networks will develop position statements for their respective group to be considered by the board, which can be referred to by Gayaa Dhuwi (Proud Spirit) Australia staff in when developing policy, providing advice, or undertaking advocacy activities.

The five collaborative networks are:
  • LGBTIQ+SB Collaborative Network
  • Lived Experience Collaborative Network
  • Stolen Generations Collaborative Network
  • Workforce Collaborative Network
  • Youth Collaborative Network