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Healthy Skin Week in Maningrida

05 December 2022

Mala'la Health Service recently coordinated Healthy Skin Week to promote early identification and treatment of skin infections in a bid to lower long term health conditions such as Acute Rheumatic Fever, Rheumatic Heart and Kidney Disease. Over five days, the dedicated crew of Aboriginal Community Health Workers, Nurses and Volunteer Doctors assessed and treated more than 1,200 people in Maningrida and outstations. Outreach clinics through late night shops, child and family centre and public spaces around the community provided extra points of access for the community. 
Natasha Bond was involved in leading the community response with home-to-home visits and workshops to provide health information and support. "Rheumatic Heart Disease is a huge concern for our mob, we have the highest rates of RHD in the world. We want to encourage everyone to work on this together, get treatment straight away and stop further health complications".     
In the lead up to Healthy Skin Week, West Arnhem Regional Council coordinated hard-rubbish collections with Stedman's also coming on board to provide Skip Bins at various sites. Maningrida College hosted multiple workshops with the school students from kindy to seniors' cohorts. These Workshops were delivered by the Mala'la team of Aboriginal Health Workers in-training, Natasha Bond and Eileen Gunabarra alongside Jennifer Damsey in Burarra and English languages.  
As part of their special visit to Maningrida, Sydney Swans took part in workshops with Seniors to come up with a joint local campaign "Healthy Skin. Healthy Home. Healthy Heart".  The campaign was screened across the community throughout the week thanks to the Council's donation of the portable cinema screen.   
Healthy Skin Week was delivered in partnership with Menzies School of Health and made possible through the generous sponsorship and support of Nja-marleya Cultural Leaders and Traditional Owners; Maningrida College; West Arnhem Regional Council; Stedman's; MPA; BAC; General Store; Menzies Medical Team;  Murnun Men's Space; The Child & Family Centre; Sydney Swans; Nawarddeken Academy; Top End Health 
Community members are encouraged to continue to present to the clinic if there are any concerns about skin conditions.