Funding to help South Coast Women’s Health and Welfare Aboriginal Corporation (Waminda) make smoking history

A South Coast anti-smoking campaign targeting teenage women and pregnant smokers will be able to build on its life-changing work thanks to $610,000 from the Federal Government.

South Coast Women’s Health and Welfare Aboriginal Corporation (Waminda) will use the funding to extend the Balaang Binjalaan–Aboriginal Women Tobacco Intervention Project for another year.

Minister for Indigenous Health, Ken Wyatt said the project stretches between the Illawarra and Eden.

“This health campaign reflects NAIDOC Week’s ‘Because of her, we can!’ theme,” Mr Wyatt said.

“Helping young women, mothers and their partners quit smoking is vital to ensure healthier futures for their children and themselves.”

Member for Gilmore, Ann Sudmalis, said the Balaang Binjalaan project complemented Waminda’s successful Dead or Deadly women’s health program.

“Through Waminda’s holistic and culturally comfortable engagement with local women, indications are that quitting rates are increasing,” Ms Sudmalis said.

“This is important because research shows that smoking is responsible for one in five preventable deaths in Aboriginal people and also contributes to low birth weight babies and poorer infant health.

“This funding will help Waminda extend Balaang Binjalaan to more local communities and hopefully double the number of participants, to 120.”

The funding will also support the University of Wollongong’s evaluation of the Balaang Binjilaang project.