• The Darwin Larrakia Belyuen dancers troupe. (Facebook/NACCHO)Source: Facebook/NACCHO
First Nations youth are at the forefront of this year's National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation (NACCHO) Conference.
Madeline Hayman-Reber

5 Nov 2019 - 3:38 PM  UPDATED 5 Nov 2019 - 3:54 PM

A stellar line-up of inspiring young speakers has focused on mental health at the 2019 National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation (NACCHO) Youth Conference in Darwin this week.

Themed as ‘healthy youth, healthy future’, about 100 young people from across the country gathered on balmy Larrakia country on Monday to discuss issues important to each of their communities over the next three days.

Notable speakers included mental health youth worker Brooke Blurton, and former NRL champion and mental health advocate Preston Campbell, who shared his own experiences with the young delegates.

"The biggest thing that we're all getting from it is that even though they're really doing some good things in their space, they can actually do more," Mr Campbell told NITV News.

"More that's going to not only benefit their communities, but also make things a little bit easier on themselves. I think that's what these events are all about - being able to come together and share what we're doing and what we can all gain from it."

The attendees are now able to take home the skills, knowledge and inspiration of their peers to their communities to grow themselves and continue their important work.

On Wednesday, over 400 attendees will arrive at Darwin Convention Centre for the larger NACCHO Member’s Conference, with a Welcome to Country to be performed by the Darwin Larrakia Belyuen dancers, before an opening address by NACCHO acting chair, Donnella Mills.

A robust program will ensue over the next few days, with a line-up of over 40 speakers, as well as a special announcement expected to be made on Thursday by the federal Minister for Health, Greg Hunt.

“I understand that there will be some good news from the government and that will directly affect our sector,” Ms Mills said.

NACCHO has already been commissioned by the Department of Health to produce a core services and outcomes framework by May 2020.

“This is a really exciting opportunity for our sector that will bring together a comprehensive set of core public healthcare functions that are applicable to our services in remote, regional and metropolitan Australia,” Ms Mills said.

"The framework will be developed through NACCHO's members and extensive consultations will be done. That will be the key to delivering a successful project."

A small team will consult with key stakeholders and health organisations to see what is currently being delivered, and what areas can be improved.

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