In May 2023, Renata Watene was honoured as the first International Keynote Speaker at the prestigious National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Eye Health Conference in Parramatta, Australia.
Renata is renowned for her work in indigenous eye health in Aotearoa. Her presentation titled “Indigenous Voice from Aotearoa – A kōrero about what we can learn from one another.” was well received by the 240 delegates, including the more than 100 First Nations representatives from all corners of Australia.
The conference served as a valuable platform to promote equitable outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities. The conference theme, “Our Vision in Our Hands: Finding Our Voice,” emphasised the importance of emerging and future First Nations leaders while acknowledging our current leaders’ and esteemed Elders’ pivotal previous work.
During her presentation, Renata delved into the similarities and differences between Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander and Māori cultures, explored the role of Te Tiriti, and highlighted the vital role health practitioners play in achieving equitable outcomes for Indigenous Peoples.
Overall, the National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Eye Health Conference proved to be a momentous occasion, fostering collaboration and understanding among delegates, and paving the way for future progress in achieving equitable outcomes for all.
See here for a detailed summary of the National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Eye Health Conference 2023.