Warren Draper is a deadly young member of the Goolburri Aboriginal Health Advancement Company Limited family. He’s just graduated with his Certificate IV in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Primary Health Care Practice. Below, Warren talks a little about himself and his journey to becoming Goolburri’s newest graduate.

Tell me about yourself? Where are you from, who’s your mob?

I’m Warren Draper, and I just graduated from the Certificate IV in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Primary Health Care Practice. I am a Mardigan and Kamilaroi man born and raised in Charleville. I started working in the Sector at CWAATSICCH before moving to Toowoomba to play rugby league, where Aunty Lizzie (Goolburri CEO Lizzie Adams) reached out to come and join the team at Goolburri.

What interested you in the Health Worker Traineeship?

Ever since high school, I’ve had an interest in working in an AMS among mob to help close the gap. My family are working within the health sector, and I was passionate about becoming a physio, so I started my health education with the Certificate IV in Health and Fitness. This helped with talking about diet and exercise within my role as an Aboriginal Health Practitioner. The body is fascinating and AMSs are often sports orientated so that’s good. Luckily for me, I’m not shy or shame – I got that from mum and dad. I enjoy working with the community and love every opportunity I get to work with the clients.

What skills have you learnt that you believe would best contribute to your community?

Throughout my working life I’ve learnt a lot of skills. Since starting with Goolburri I’ve enjoyed the challenges. I’ve loved throwing myself into the deep end and having the supports around me to ask for help.

Coming to Toowoomba, I’ve found it easy to introduce myself. Goolburri has helped me with the shame factor and the skills with being a Health Practitioner. I had a lot of help from the Enrolled Nurse with immunisations, observations, high blood pressure, abnormal diabetes and other stuff – it helped heaps. I absolutely love the GPs at Goolburri – they help me with whatever I need, and I try to help them out as much as I can.

When I’ve gone to TAFE for my in-class learning blocks, both Goolburri and QAIHC have helped with their mentor roles, even making sure I feel comfortable with the transition when I go to Cairns.

Where do you see yourself in 5 years’ time?

I want to get as many qualifications as I can and look at leadership roles to increase my skills and be the best I can be for my mob. I still see myself at Goolburri but would be nice to be at home. So it would be one of the two, but I absolutely love being at Goolburri at the moment.

Do you have any advice for someone considering joining the Health Workforce

Don’t doubt yourself. My main goal was to be in a health service and it’s the best thing I’ve ever done. Being in the AMS is the best feeling and the culture around it is so good. I love being around people from all different backgrounds and supporting every person who needs help to close the gap.