About Illuminating EnvironMENTAL Health: Healing from the Inside Out
95% of Aboriginal people in Australia have had their lives tainted in some way by suicide. In fact Indigenous Australians are six times more likely to commit suicide than non-Indigenous Australians. Mental health in Indigenous communities is undeniably an issue that demands attention and action.
Raymond Pratt, CEO of AllGrid Energy and Director of the DICE group of companies, recently had the opportunity to address over 600 Indigenous leaders in Vancouver about the achievements his group of companies is making in alleviating energy poverty in remote communities.
Energy poverty is a common experience for Indigenous people and what is clear from the forum is that, all over the world, Indigenous communities and their leaders are increasingly recognizing the liberating potential of renewable and bio-technologies. Research, including that from Suzuki’s foundation, shows the intrinsic link between mental and environmental health. By making previously uninhabitable communities livable again, Indigenous Australians can return to land so crucial to their cultural heritage and collective wellbeing.
The evening will begin with a Welcome to Country and an opening address from the Lord Mayor of Sydney, Clover Moore. Under Moore’s leadership the City of Sydney has just committed to 100% divestment from fossil fuels.
The evening’s panel discussion will focus on ‘outside of the box’ solutions and the night wraps up with a mesmerizing performance from members of Indigenous music coalition and charity, Black Arm Band, who do extensive work out in remote communities running music workshops and performances.
All profits from the event are being donated to the Centre for Rural & Remote Mental Health (CRRMH) to continue funding their research and development of an Aboriginal-specific mental health program to be delivered in remote communities, as well as Indigenous charity group Black Arm Band.