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About

Introducing Ceara Larkins, our Aboriginal Hospital Liaison Officer

Friday 26 November

Ceara Larkins has recently taken on the role as our new Aboriginal Hospital Liaison Officer (AHLO). She shares some insights into her background and what she hopes to bring to the role.

Can you share a little bit about your background?

My Name Ceara (Kirra) Larkins I am a proud Wotjobaluk woman from the Wimmera.

I am a 25 year old mother of three with a strong passion in community and looking after Mob. I am an active Member of the Barengi Gadjin Land Council where I am a part the Treaty Sub Committee.

Where have you been working previously?

I have spent the last five years in various health roles, including most recently as an administration officer in our Pathology team. I'm very much looking forward to working in this role and helping community. 

What does the day to day role of Aboriginal Hospital Liaison Officer entail?

As the AHLO, I'm a point of contact between Mob and doctors. If a patient is admitted I make sure they’ve got everything they need and offer support and link into community if needed. I can offer a variety of things depending on needs and well as educating the team and making sure our culture is being respected.

What does the role of Aboriginal Hospital Liaison Officer mean to you?

Being the AHLO means a lot to me. We all know mob that have had a bad experience in hospital, or have experienced it ourselves. I want to be a part of that change to help close that gap further and be a voice for anyone that feels like they're not being heard or understood. It also means I get the chance to teach and educate others in culture from time to time, which is amazing.

What do you hope to achieve in the role?

I've got very big shoes to fill, though I hope to get rid of a lot of the stigma hopefully change a few people minds and eliminate some of the stereotypes around indigenous people and health.

I also want to be the friendly face mob can reach out to and know that someone has their back, especially with the hospital jargon.

What do you bring to the role?

I bring the knowledge of the health systems and understanding on how they work, knowledge of culture and a very loud strong voice.

Can you tell us something about the Wotjobaluk people and culture?

 The Wotjobaluk, Jaadwa, Jadawdjali, wergaia and Jupagalk people are from Western Victoria. We were lucky to be the first in Victoria to achieve Native Title determination in 2005. We have a lot of culturally significant sites and a rich history from Gariwerd (the Grampians) to Ebenezer mission. We have a very deep connection to country and have amazing strong elders and people that are changing country and bringing back cultural burning to make country good.

Austin is like a little community – everyone is so nice and welcoming, and I really enjoy working here. It also has the best coffee ever. 

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