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In this blog, Sarah Squire, Butterfly’s Manager of Knowledge, Research and Policy, summarises some of the research on eating disorders and body image concerns among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, highlighting why a culturally competent system of care is needed. #NRW2021 #MoreThanAWord
“My message to other Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people that are going through similar feelings and situations, is to find support in each other and to talk about it. Don't push it under the rug. We all are facing these issues and there's a reason behind it; we're not meant to fit into the beauty standards that society pushes onto us. We really need to embrace each other.” Read Garra's experience with an eating disorder and body image concerns. #EveryBODYisDeadly #YarnAboutBodyImage
“It’s so important for me to go out and speak about my body issues and eating problems, because there might be another little Aboriginal boy out there who is experiencing the same thing as me. Our health is our number one issue, and it needs to be spoken about more in Aboriginal communities. We need to be educated around how our bodies work and how it is normal to feel the ways we feel.”
Butterfly Foundation has today launched its #EveryBODYisDeadly campaign to encourage Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people to talk about body image and eating concerns and reach out to Butterfly for culturally safe support. One in ten Australians will at some stage experience an eating disorder, and many more will experience body image concerns. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people experience these issues at similar rates to the wider Australian population, with 30% of young people—including Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people – saying they’re very concerned about their body image.
In honour of Reconciliation Week, Liz Dale, PhD student and descendant of the Worimi Nation, shares her insights on Aboriginal health and eating disorders.
Butterfly Foundation and Butterfly Residential Care, trading as Wandi Nerida – Australia’s first and only residential recovery centre for people affected by an eating disorder, support the need for greater funding of eating disorder services as highlighted on ABC’s Four Corners program (27 February 2023).