Media education resources for health professionals
There are a range of education resources developed to improve awareness and knowledge about kidney disease and the impact on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, their families and communities.

All the resources listed have been reviewed and recommended for educating Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people about kidney health.

Please not: some videos may contain images and voices of people who have died and content of a sensitive nature.

‘Big Girls Don’t Cry’

The cultural and emotional impact of kidney disease is devastating on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities. The spirit shown in these stories does not date.

In the documentary ‘Big Girls Don’t Cry’, three videos follow three women – Essie Coffey of Muruwari clan, Mariah Swan of Kamilaroi clan and Glenda Kerinaiau of Tiwi clan – to tell how they are affected by kidney disease. The strength and resilience they display makes a very moving film.

A 26-minute documentary, directed by Darrin Ballangarry, produced by Ronin Films as part of the National Indigenous Documentary Fund Series 5. See more here.

‘Diabetes Story’

A film about living a healthy and long life with well-controlled diabetes – is an effective educational resource for all health professionals working with Aboriginal people in central Australia.

The film is written and animated as a story in English and Aboriginal languages: Pitjantjatjara, Warlpiri and Arrernte. It is useful for presenting to people with low medical literacy and understanding of written material or whose second language is English.

The film contains five sections:

  • How do you feel?What is diabetes?
  • Why have I got diabetes?
  • What could happen to me?
  • If you have diabetes or think you might have diabetes.

More on this resource here.

To order, call Central Australian Aboriginal Congress on 08 8951 4425 or email

‘Transplant Story: A Personal Journey’

This is the real-life story of an Aboriginal family living with kidney disease. The 52-minute film closely follows a young man, Ronno, who had a living donor transplant when he was a child, which lasted 24 years. When his transplanted kidney began to fail he had to relocate for haemodialysis. Now on peritoneal dialysis waiting for a transplant, he is back with his family. 

Film produced by Menzies School of Health Research - find out more here.

For further details phone Menzies School of Health Research on 08 8922 8196 or email or find details of other Menzies resources.

‘Kidney Stories’ toolkit

This high-quality series of flipcharts sets out in a simple way the story of kidney disease: how kidneys work, the stages of sick kidneys, how to eat and be stronger with sick kidneys, how dialysis works, and the types of dialysis and treatment available. It also sensitively presents the story of palliative and supportive care.

The flipcharts are designed for health professionals, to enable them to answer patients’ questions and explain more where needed. DVDs are also available.

The ’Kidney Stories’ toolkit is produced by NT Renal Services. Find out more by contacting Susan Poppe on 08 8999 2406 or email               

The toolkit is also available from Darwin University Print Shop. Phone Scott Chamberlain on 08 8946 6300, email or visit

The ‘Kidney Stories’ toolkit is now part of the education project: Sharing the Full and True Stories about Chronic Disease. Find out more about this project here.

'A yarn that could save a life' radio series

A series of six radio plays which address barriers that may prevent Indigenous Australians discussing and making decisions about organ and tissue donation.

Associated resources include a simple illustrated flipchart ‘What is organ and tissue donation?’ by the Kulunga Research Network - click to download the Nyangumarta version or the English version.

Produced by Queensland Remote Aboriginal Media, listen to the series here.

Find supporting brochures from DonateLife here.

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