Ninti's Chair Professor Tom Calma AO is one of Australia’s leading advocates for improving Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health. He is a former Australian Human Rights Commissioner and is widely acknowledged as a driving force behind the Close the Gap campaign following his landmark 2005 Social Justice Report

Ninti works on a number of health projects.

The National Best Practice Unit Tackling Indigenous Smoking Initiative (NBPU TIS) – Australian Government Department of Health

Ninti manages the National Best Practice Unit of the Tackling Indigenous Smoking program, which aims to reduce smoking as the most preventable cause of ill health for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. With our expertise in collaborative partnerships and ability to reach specific demographics across Australia, the Department of Health commissioned Ninti to provide a range of tailored support for organisations funded under the program including:

  • accessing evidence-based research, information and resources on tobacco control
  • developing Action Plans
  • developing performance indicators and monitoring impact
  • accessing relevant training and networking opportunities

Partners involved in this 7-year $20 million project are the Health Research Institute at the University of Canberra and the Australian Indigenous HealthInfonet based at Edith Cowan University. For more information visit: or contact Eileen Van Iersel, Manager

Feasibility Study for the Remote and Rural Indigenous Allied Health Workforce Development Project (RIAHP) – Indigenous Allied Health Australia (IAHA)

Ninti was contracted to undertake a feasibility study on behalf of IAHA in Tennant Creek and surrounds. The objective of the study was to:

  • document the current allied health workforce
  • identify gaps in the current allied health workforce
  • document what Aboriginal people living in Tennant Creek and surrounds determine as culturally safe and responsive delivery of health services.

Support for Intensive Family Support Services (IFSS) Evaluation Project – Social Compass

Ninti assisted Social Compass to evaluate the IFSS by providing senior Aboriginal Community Researchers to provide feedback/input on data collection tools and processes, including a semi-structured interview guide for families participating in IFSS, a participant information sheet for families, a consent process for families and instruction on how best to conduct interviews. Ninti then attended site visits with Social Compass researchers to support/conduct interviews with families across the communities of Yuendumu, Tennant Creek, Alice Springs and Ntaria.

Trachoma Health Promotion Study – Newman’s Own Foundation Fund at Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors

Trachoma is one of the major causes of preventable blindness in Australia, and we are the only developed country to have epidemic levels of the disease. It is found predominantly in remote and very remote communities. This project involved Ninti Aboriginal Community Researchers working with remote communities in the NT to run focus groups to discuss the importance of and response to messages about facial cleanliness and access to washing facilities in homes and other places in communities. This activity formed part of a broader trachoma project collaboration between Ninti and the Indigenous Eye Health (IEH) Unit at the University of Melbourne, which contributes to the goals of the National Trachoma Health Promotion Programme.

Reducing Smoking During Pregnancy: Australian Nurse-Family Partnership Program (ANFPP) support – Abt Associates

The ANFPP is a nurse-led home visiting program that supports women pregnant with an Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander child. ANFPP mothers are offered support and guidance from early pregnancy into their baby’s infancy and toddlerhood. The ANFPP is an important early investment in the future of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children in local communities.

Ninti worked with ANFPP to improve women’s knowledge and practice on smoking cessation to contribute to decreasing the prevalence of smoking by pregnant women and new mothers.

Client satisfaction survey for Central Australian Aboriginal Congress – Central Australian Aboriginal Congress

Ninti was contracted by Congress to conduct a minimum of 1,400 client satisfaction surveys at eight Congress health clinics in Alice Springs and surrounding remote communities. The information and data collected is helping Congress to analyse how it can deliver improved health services for Aboriginal people in Central Australia.