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Guddi Project


Guddi Message StickThe Guddi Project: "Come let's begin to heal, come rest your mind, body and soul and finally come home and find that quiet, peaceful self" is an innovative approach to health, disability and human rights for homeless Indigenous people who have a neurological disability.

Synapse received $150,000 to undertake the Guddi Project which was borne out of the need to gather evidence about the extent and nature of neurocognitive disability amongst Indigenous Queenslanders to enable the state government to accurately advise the Commonwealth Government about the expected level of need for NDIS and to be NDIS ready.

Participants in the project receive a culturally safe and appropriate clinical assessment including: neurocognitive, medical and functional assessment. Blood and faecal samples are also collected for biomedical examination. Faecal samples enable the identification of human parasite infection which causes a range of serious physical problems and is thought to impact on neurocognitive functioning. Our results may assist individuals and provide important public health data to address this preventable condition.

To understand the lived experience of disability amongst homeless Indigenous people information is also gathered regarding participants' experiences of neurocognitive disability and homelessness, their understanding and expectations of disability supports, including the NDIS; and barriers and enablers to service usage. This data is collected through formal and informal yarning.

Following completion of the individual assessments participants are informed as to whether they have been assessed as having a neurocognitive disability. The Project Team explains to the participant, in culturally appropriate language, the nature of their disability or health condition and whether they are eligible for disability supports. 


To date 61 clinical assessments and 41 qualitative assessments have been completed, and 20 stool samples collected. 


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