We are together in Spirit
We want to let you know that all of us at the National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Catholic Council (NATSICC) are keeping you, your ministries, families and communities in our thoughts and prayers during this difficult and challenging time.
We are aware that most Aboriginal and Islander Ministries are closed to visitors and are operating remotely. Obviously Masses have been cancelled with many praying individually and utilising video conferencing technology via their own Dioceses.
We are not medical experts and are suggesting that everyone follows the guidelines set down by their States, Territories and medical authorities. We do however ask that you continue to check in on family via phonecalls and consider utilising online video calling. Skype is Free and can be downloaded here. We always like to see each other when talking so take the time to help our Aunties and Uncles through setting Skype up.
Finally, now is an excellent time to revisit St John Paul II’s address to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island people at Blatherskite Park in 1986. Many of his words were revolutionary at the time, but in our current circumstances they provide us with hope and strength and a nation united against a common threat.
Please contact us should your Ministry require Toiletry bags (maximum of 5 per Ministry due to current stock limitations) for people that are in hospital. Please note there is no toilet paper in these packs – just the necessities including sanitary packs for women, pyjamas, shavers for men, toothpaste and toothbrushes.
NATSICC has collated a number of resources below to help you during this time:
COVID-19 Emergency Contact Numbers by State (courtesy NACCHO)
If you feel unwell, have a fever or sore throat. PLEASE do not go to the medical centre/family clinic or the hospital, please contact the communicable disease control branch by state directly.
ACT health: 02 6205 2155
NSW health: 1300 066 055
SA health: 1300 232 272
TAS health: 1800 671 738
QLD health: 13 432 584
VIC health: 1300 651 160
WA health: 08 922 8588
Government Covid Updates
The official health.gov.au website link relating to Covid
NACCHO Covid Updates
NACCHO is the national peak body representing 143 Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Services (ACCHSs) across the country on Aboriginal health and wellbeing issues. Bookmark this page as it is updated regularly.
Covid 19 Support grants for remote communities
The Federal Government is offering 45 Flexible grants to assist remote communities as part of the Government’s $57.8 million Remote Community Preparedness and Retrieval package. Minister for Health, Greg Hunt, said the Government was focused on ensuring remote Indigenous communities were prepared for an outbreak of COVID-19.
Sorry Business during Covid
A guide produced by QLD health providing guidance for communities conducting Sorry business during the Covid pandemic
Why First Nations Communities are more susceptible to Covid
An article by probonoaustralia.com.au outlining the reasons why urgent action is needed to protect communities