Safer Spaces is an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander (First Nations) LGBTIQA+SB* Suicide Prevention program on inclusive practice.
The Safer Spaces program consists of a full-day in-person workshop that increases participants’ knowledge and literacy of the needs of First Nations LGBTIQA+SB people to improve access to suicide prevention, health, and social services for the First Nations LGBTIQA+SB community. It is currently available for First Nations community members, suicide prevention and mental health services and the social services sector. Government department officials are also encouraged to express their interest. The workshop draws on current research and looks at recent policy gaps and how to overcome them. It helps to identify unique microaggressions affecting this community, how they operate and affect experiences in our health systems. Participants will become better informed on the amplified impact of compounding racism and sexuality and gender-minority phobia, i.e., homo-, bi-, transphobia, and the link to suicide risk and the need for gender-affirming care.
*Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Intersex, Genderqueer/Non-binary, Queer, Asexual, Non-Binary, Sistergirl and Brotherboy. For more information go to www.blackrainbow.org.au
- Identification of factors that are likely to increase the risk of suicidal thoughts, attempts and self-harm in First Nations LGBTIQA+SB communities.
- Protective factors within families, schools and communities that can assist the prevention of suicide attempts and self-harm among First Nations LGBTIQA+SB community members.
- Identify how to improve service access for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander LGBTIQA+SB people
- Practical ways to implement a Safer Spaces environment.
- Supported by the Northern Territory Primary Health Network (NTPHN), the Safer Spaces workshop will be run in Alice Springs, Tennant Creek, Katherine, Nhulunbuy, Jabiru, and the Tiwi Islands, with two workshops per location or as requested by the community across September to November 2022. They are free to attend.
Say hello and express your interest in making a ‘Safer Space’.
Your facilitator is Dameyon Bonson. His pronouns are he/him. Dameyon who has two decades of experience and expertise in human and social services. His goal is to provide practical solutions to complex social problems.
Dameyon holds a post-graduate qualification in Suicidology and is currently undertaking a Master of Social Change Leadership as an Atlantic Fellow with Melbourne University and the global Atlantic Fellowship Program.
Dameyon is a Darwin (NT) Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander gay male and the founder of the not-for-profit social enterprise Black Rainbow. He also owns and operates successful advice and facilitation firm and is considered the country’s lead on First Nation Australians’ diverse genders, sex and/or sexualities inclusivity in suicide prevention.
Dameyon has a demonstrated ability to work across rural, remote, and urban environments. Please visit his LinkedIn for more information.
Each participant will receive a swag of Safer Spaces gear, including selected Black Rainbow merchandise in reusable free ‘Safer Spaces’ tote bag.
The National Suicide Prevention Trial - The Greater Darwin Region
In 2016 the National Suicide Prevention Trial, funded by the Commonwealth, was announced, with twelve trial sites throughout Australia.
The focus of the national trial was to adopt a systems-based approach, in which a suite of evidence-based strategies work together to reduce suicide attempts and deaths.
The trials are led by Primary Health Networks (PHNs) and aim to improve the current evidence of effective suicide prevention strategies at a local level for at-risk population groups.
The Greater Darwin region was selected as one of two First Nations-only sites (along with the Kimberley in WA) from the twelve regions.
Based on the success of Dameyon’s two projects funded as part of the Greater Darwin region trial by the Northern Territory Primary Health Network (NTPHN), Safer Spaces has been expanded to be rolled out throughout regional and remote parts of the Northern Territory. Safer Spaces is supported by NTPHN and Rural Workforce Agency NT and in partnership with Black Rainbow. More on the National Suicide Prevention Trial, can be found here and here.
Safer Spaces is the only First Nations LGBTIQA+SB specific suicide prevention activity in the country, and the only one to be commissioned under the National Suicide Prevention Trial. It has been independently designed and developed from the ground up by Dameyon, a First Nations LGBTIQA+SB community member. Safer Spaces will be evaluated by an external provider.
Dameyon's Safer Spaces is a First Nations LGBTIQA+SB developed program in suicide prevention. It aims to increase organisational and individual competencies required to improve the First Nations LGBTIQA+SB community's access to suicide prevention, mental health, and social services. It is the only First Nations LGBTIQA+SB cultural competency program in the country.
Safer Spaces is the coming together of two of Dameyon's commissioned projects under the NSPT by the Northern Territory Primary Health Network (NTPH).
The first was a co-design and co-consultation process with First Nations youth to inform on what it is like to be a First Nations LGBTIQA+SB young person, their types of experiences, and the protections needed. The second was the commissioning of Inclusive Practices—a workshop developed by Dameyon, first created in 2017. Informed by the trial experience, Inclusive Practices has been renamed 'Safer Spaces'.
The NTPH first supported Dameyon's unique body of work in 2020. Darwin and its greater region is one of two sites (of 12 across Australia) that focus on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.
Dameyon has received additional funding from NT PHN to roll out Safer Spaces to locations external to the Greater Darwin Region. Although not a requirement, Safer Spaces will undergo an external and independent evaluation.
for the Northern Territory
Each workshop runs from 9-4pm (approx.) and is a catered event. Please select the workshop you are interested in.