Indigenous actor and writer, Steven Oliver, takes to video in #OURMOB, a new social media campaign tackling youth suicide in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities.
Oliver, a descendent of the Kuku Yalanji, Gangalidda, Waanyi, Woppaburra, Biripi and Bundjalung peoples, was engaged by Brisbane Indigenous Media Association with support by nib foundation to work on the campaign. Oliver, who is also an Ambassador for R U Okay Day, says he felt strongly about the project.
“Suicide has touched my own mob and while this was an opportunity to primarily promote to young people that we are resilient and strong, I wanted the message to appeal to all mob who may be struggling,” he said. #OURMOB is four short videos featuring young people and poetry by Oliver and Murri artist Ancestress that focus on themes of belonging, self-care and resilience.
Social connectedness, connection to land, culture and spirituality are just some of the protective factors that can counter the underlying causes linked to high youth suicide rates in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities. Oliver appears in the first video, titled #YOUMOB. The other videos were released during March.
Brisbane Indigenous Media Association CEO, Kaava Watson, says addressing youth suicide is critical. “We know that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander suicide is amongst the highest in the world and as an Indigenous media organisation we have a responsibility to provide relevant and meaningful content for our young people who may be at risk of suicide,” Mr Watson said.
He called on the community to share the #YOUMOB video and the #OURMOB campaign as widely as possible. “If it encourages just one of our mob to reach out and get help, it will be worth it. But I think these videos are a good reminder for all of us to be looking out for each other, particularly our young people.”
#OURMOB was made possible through a grant from nib foundation and support from beyondblue and headspace. The videos will be available for viewing at BIMA Vision’s vimeo channel at https://vimeo.com/bimavision and Facebook pages.
Brisbane Indigenous Media Association will also work with social media influencers to share the #OURMOB campaign through Facebook and Twitter.