WCHM’s Sexual and Reproductive Health Research 

Over 600 responses were received to WCHM’s sexual and reproductive health survey when it closed in November 2017, and some interesting and diverse themes have emerged about the challenges that ACT women of different age groups face in managing their sexual and reproductive health, including issues relating to access to services and information. The findings from this research, in a report due out in July, will be used to inform and work with ACT Government about the gaps and barriers that ACT women may face in this important are of their health.

WCHM has been exploring these findings further through focus groups and interviews, and we are keen to hear from more women who are aged 40 to 60 plus. If you are interested or would like to find out more about being involved, please contact us at admin@wchm.org.au or call (02) 6290 2166.

Tell us your views – Exploring what impacts on ACT women’s ability to maintain healthy behaviours  
This WCHM project is currently exploring with a wide range of ACT women what impacts on their healthy eating and physical activity, and how they feel about health promotion methods and messages in the media.  We know that women are busier than ever, and that health messages can often be confusing or conflicting.

So we are keen to hear as many ACT women’s views as we can and we are now organising discussion groups and interviews during May. The results of this work will help us to influence how the WCHM and ACT government can better promote health to women in the ACT.

Can you help us?  Please contact admin@wchm.org.au or ring 02 6290 2166 to find our more or to be involved.

Canberra Endometriosis Centre receives donation at local event

WCHM has worked since the early 1990s on Endometriosis, and was part of the Canberra Endometriosis Network which informed the delivery of the recent national response to this important women’s health issue.

WCHM was pleased to attend a cheque giving ceremony to the Canberra Endometriosis Centre on 11 April, which resulted from a fundraiser for the Canberra Endometriosis Centre by Margaret Kalms – “Experience EndoWomanArt – which raised nearly $3,000.  This was a small event but provided a unique opportunity to highlight the excellent work being done by the Endometriosis Centre (which will be highlighted as an example of best practice in the new National Plan), and Melissa Parker, the Endometriosis Coordinator and Researcher at the Centre.

The Member for Canberra, Gai Brodtmann, attended and talked about the physical and emotional trauma of the disease, and the financial burden on women and their families. She spoke about the ability of art such as Margaret’s to create empathy in people who haven’t been on the endometriosis journey. As the Co-Chair of the Parliamentary Friends of Endometriosis Research, Ms Brodtmann has spoken at many events and advocated for funding for endometriosis research. Her efforts culminated in the announcement of a First National Action Plan for Endometriosis by Federal Health Minister Greg Hunt.

Also present at the event was the local Canberra Endometriosis Network, which now has over 600 members, and provides social events and hospital support visits to women receiving treatment. For women with this disease, being able to talk to other women about their experience can help in managing the emotional trauma, as well as sharing information about managing the disease.