Nita is a Yamatji Badimia woman based in Perth, WA who holds a kaleidoscope of lived and professional perspectives.
Despite facing severe challenges with getting access to medical assistance and being labelled as too ‘complex’ , she has gone onto achieve an expansive career in the disability sector.
In 2013, she studied a Bachelor of Nursing at Edith Cowan University, was a recipient of the Dorothea Swift Indigenous Nursing Scholarship and held a position as a personal carer for clients with spinal cord injuries.
She was the first Indigenous employee in the WA NDIA Trial Site, one of the first Indigenous specialist support co – coordinators working exclusively with clients living with psychosocial disabilities, assisting with the early emergence of First People’s Disability Network in WA and through to being selected to serve a two year term on the Ministerial Advisory Council on Disability WA (MACDWA). Simultaneously to these career developments, Nita volunteered her time to Aboriginal suicide prevention and upskilling in this space in respect to Mental Health First Aid (MHFA), Gatekeeper Training, Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training (ASIST), Counselling in addition to becoming a certified yoga teacher.
She also volunteers many hours in providing pro bono advisory and insights in both the suicide prevention, mental health and disability sectors in the hope of effecting change. Her time spent volunteering for 100.9FM Noongar Radio furthered her efforts to raise public awareness around suicide prevention in respect to Indigenous community members who faced further marginalisation such as living with disabilities, LGBTIQ+.
Her advocacy efforts in seeking to have the voices and autonomy of the vulnerable to be heard and respected took a deeply personal turn when the matriarch of her family passed away in 2019 and she became an advocate for the right to access Voluntary Assisted Dying on the stance that safeguards were ethical, respected the autonomy of the patient and were culturally appropriate to any community who wished to include this element into hospice care. Nita was an active member on the Go Gentle Australia’s Perth Rally Committee and she advocated for the need for the presence of Mental Health First Aid Marshall’s at events and led by example by volunteering to hold the space for individual’s through events involving heavy themes and content.
She undertook a Bachelor of Laws at Edith Cowan University in 2020 and received the Perth Airport Indigenous Scholarship in 2020. In early 2021, Nita has embarked on become an emerging playwright for Yirra Yaarkin Theatre Company, and was unanimously accepted as a committee member on the Indigenous Legal Issues Committee via the Law Society of WA.
She is active on social media in advocating for ethically viable and inclusive health policy that respects the patient’s rights and autonomy. Nita is passionate about having the civil yet sobering conversations that are necessary for systemic change to occur, with a view towards being solution focused to allow sustainable policies to be born.