Peer mentoring for dietitians working in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health

A research project by Dr Annabelle Wilson will explore ways to better support dietitians to work with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples around food and nutrition.

The Flinders University researcher has been awarded a Flinders Foundation Health Seed Grant to extend current work around developing a peer mentoring model - known as a ‘Community of Practice’ - to support dietitians and nutritionists working in Aboriginal health across Australia.

At present, there is a lack of support for dietitians working in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health, which can often lead to burnout on the job.

As the oldest, continuous living cultures in the world, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples have strength, tenacity and resilience. However, past and ongoing colonisation of Australia has impacted food systems and food knowledges of Aboriginal people, and led to severe health inequities, in particular disproportionate rates of nutrition-related health conditions including diabetes and kidney disease.

Dr Wilson says there is an urgent need to work with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people to address nutrition and its underlying determinants in a way that integrates Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples’ understandings of health, healing and wellbeing.

The aim of this project is to influence nutrition and diet support for Aboriginal and Torres Strait islander people by identifying the conditions and contexts under which a Community of Practice is able to successfully support dietitians and nutritionists to work in Aboriginal health and obtaining perspectives from Aboriginal people about what is required.

There is a lack of support for dietitians working in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health, which can often lead to burnout on the job.


Project title: Peer mentoring for dietitians working in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health: scaling up to a national intervention study. 

Lead researcher: Dr Annabelle Wilson

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