Jun 042012
 
Allan Langer and Aunty Gwen Tronc, a representative of the North Coast Aboriginal Corporation for Community Health show that healthy living can be a ball.

Allan Langer and Aunty Gwen Tronc, a representative of the North Coast Aboriginal Corporation for Community Health show that healthy living can be a ball.

Getting a health check can be rewarding in more ways than one, as participants at the North Coast Aboriginal Corporation for Community Health’s (NCACCH) Well Person’s Health Check Days recently discovered.

The two Health Check Days, held at Gympie and the Sunshine Coast, were all about encouraging the community to interact with local health service providers.

Each of the 200 plus Health Check Day attendees received a lanyard that was stamped for every activity they participated in. Attendees received a  goody bag, containing a pedometer, frisbee, and hat  once they collected seven stamps, including two for having conversations with health service providers.

With a program including health checks, talks with health service providers, and workshops like tai-chi, diabetes education and traditional men’s and women’s activities, the lanyards filled quickly!

The addition of live music, cultural dancing, games, a jumping castle, and a guest appearance by rugby league legend Allan Langer made this alcohol-and drug-free event a real hit with the community.

“We tried to make the Health Check Days more interactive, and the lanyard idea was really successful in getting people to get health checks, participate in workshops and talk to health service providers,” said Program Manager, Kim Helmore.

Funded by the Australian Government’s Live Longer! Campaign, the Health Check Days aimed to educate and increase understanding of chronic disease health issues affecting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people(s).

The program enables communities to run locally-driven health promotion projects to help people make healthy lifestyle choices. For these two Queensland communities, the key was making good health something to get excited about, according to Kim.

“We’re hoping to raise awareness of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health issues through the celebration of local culture, a diverse range of entertainment and displays for all ages to participate in.”

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