Blue Care was presented a prestigious Queensland Government Reconciliation Award by Premier Anna Bligh on Friday night at the 2010 Reconciliation Awards for Business ceremony.
The leading not-for-profit community health and aged care provider was announced the winner of the Community Organisation Category for its contribution to promoting reconciliation in Queensland.
Blue Care Indigenous Coordinator Norelle Watson said it was an honour for Blue Care to accept the award.
“Blue Care is extremely proud of its initiatives to promote reconciliation in Queensland and it’s a wonderful achievement for our efforts to be recognised at such a high level,” Ms Watson said.
Blue Care’s commitment to encouraging reconciliation is demonstrated through ongoing program development and employment of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander staff and improving access to health and aged care services for Indigenous people.
“Through our Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Employment Program we’ve reached our target of 2.5 per cent of Blue Care’s total workforce being Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander staff in 2009 and hope to increase this to more than 3 per cent by 2013,” Ms Watson said.
“Blue Care currently employs more than 180 Indigenous staff in diverse areas of care including nursing, allied health, respite care, disability support and personal care.
“We have established cross-cultural training programs, mentoring, scholarships and career paths for more than 130 trainees and continue to provide strong support to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health providers across Queensland.”
The awards ceremony was held at The Gallery of Modern Art in Brisbane and formed part of the state’s Reconciliation Week celebrations.
In 2009 Blue Care was awarded a prestigious ‘Queensland Great’ Premier’s Award for its significant role in the history and development of Queensland and was officially named a ‘Q150 Icon’, as voted by the public for being one of the state’s most recognisable entities.
Blue Care started as the Blue Nursing Service in 1953 and has grown into one of Australia’s leading providers of community health and residential aged care. Blue Care staff and volunteers support the elderly, people with a disability and others in need in the community to remain independent for as long as possible.
Photo : From left: Blue Care Northside Indigenous Care Coordinator Shannean Mawn, client Barbara Bundle and Blue Care Occupational Therapist Luisa Duplancic share a laugh during a community care visit to Barbara’s home.