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Our History

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The creation of ADAN was an outcome from the NSW ‘Talking About Grog Summit’ held in Sydney in 2003. The summit recognised that Aboriginal alcohol and other drug workers in NSW are specialists within the sector. They often work in isolation in a challenging field, with little opportunity to network or share ideas and resources with other workers. 

In conjunction to ADAN, the Aboriginal Drug and Alcohol Network Leadership Group (ADAN LG) was established to provide a forum for workers to influence policy; to meet cultural values; represent AOD workforce to inform program development at all levels and across Aboriginal communities in NSW, in line with Aboriginal Health plan, 2013-2023. As well as to;  

  • Provide input into the AOD policies’, programs and services reflecting the needs of Aboriginal community.  

  • Support career pathways for Aboriginal AOD workers between various health organisations in NSW.  

  • In partnership with AH&MRC, review Aboriginal specific tools (e.g. IRIS).  

  • Ensure Aboriginal AOD workers have access to models of care and scopes of practice, education, supervision and support, and career development.  

Originally, auspiced by the Aboriginal Health and Medical Research Council (AHMRC),  the Aboriginal Drug and Alcohol Network (ADAN) with the support of a AHMRC Project Officer, were responsible to facilitate an annual Symposium to bring together AOD sector staff for networking and professional development opportunities.

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