Life Course Centre Seminar Series

Let’s Yarn About Sleep: A Community-led research program for improving First Nations Australians’ sleep health

Presented by First Nations Research Portfolio

The Let’s Yarn About Sleep (LYAS) program is transforming the way the sleep health needs of First Nations peoples are assessed and addressed. The program innovation lies in building local capacity, privileging First Nations voices, empowering end-users, integrating two-world views, interdisciplinary expertise, and diverse research methodologies. These efforts resulted in the UQ-led delivery of Australia’s first Indigenous Sleep Coach training, research roles for community members, and integration of sleep health programs in remote schools and health services.

The team is now collaborating with 11 communities to strengthen local capacity and capability for achieving sleep health equity and minimise the human, societal and economic costs associated with poor sleep. Furthermore, many other communities and services in Queensland have invited the team for workforce training and sleep health care for First Nations peoples. The LYAS program has significantly improved community awareness and appreciation of sleep health and created pathways for sleep health integration for effective prevention and management of chronic conditions. The partnership model of research has foregrounded community priorities, facilitated a shared understanding of decision-making processes, and identified knowledge and resource-sharing strategies.

About the presenters

A/Prof Yaqoot Fatima

Program Lead, Sleep health expert
Fatima is a Pharmacist, Epidemiologist and Sleep Scientist. Fatima’s research aims to reduce the societal burden of poor sleep and associated health issues through coordinated multidisciplinary, translational research and co-designed programs and service models. Fatima is an Associate Investigator in the Life Course Centre.

Ms Roslyn Von Senden

Community Engagement Manager, UQ Poche Centre
Ros is a Kalkatungu/Kalkadoon woman from Mount Isa, North-West Queensland and has Gangalidda, Garawa connections across Burketown in the Gulf of Carpentaria, Queensland. She is a teacher, leader, nurturer, and carer of children, families, and community. Roslyn joined the LYAS program as a Senior Project Coordinator in 2021. She brings a wealth of experience to the program with more than 30 years combined in Early Childhood Education, Aboriginal Community Services Sector, and Social Services across Australia. Ros was the first Aboriginal woman Employed as a Manager at the Queensland Council of Social Services, where she led the Indigenous Professional Support Unit team to implement their initiatives across 76 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Communities in Queensland.

Mr Alvin Hava

General Manager Mithangkaya Nguli Young People Ahead Youth and Community Services Indigenous Corporation
Alvin is based on Kalkadoon Nation in the mining city of Mount Isa, and has been in this role for more than 12 years. Alvin has a career spanning over 30 years working in the social health and community services sector, with a passion for working with First Nation children, youth and their families to address underlying social determinants to health and wellbeing. Alvin was previously a Board Director at several Queensland peak bodies, namely the Workforce Health and Community Council, the Youth Affairs Network of Queensland, and more recently with the Queensland Youth Housing Coalition. Alvin is committed to ensuring children and young people’s voices are heard, and that true commitments to have them involved in important decision making are adhered to and valued, as they are the future leaders of Australia.

Date & Time

Fri, 3 May, 2024

12:00 pm – 1:00 pm (AEST)


Online via Zoom




Life Course Centre

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