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Dr Ross Ingram Memorial Competition

Alfie the tooth fairy (an animation)

Alison Dimer
Med J Aust 2011; 194 (10): 539.

Alison Dimer is an Aboriginal Health Worker from the goldfields area of Western Australia. In 2008, as part of the Western Desert Kidney Health Project, she worked with Alison Clough (Healthway International Arts Fellow), and this experience sparked an idea. In the year or so that followed, Alison spent evenings and weekends thinking about this idea, and it became the story of Alfie. Continuing her involvement with the Western Desert Kidney Health Project in 2010, Alison worked with animation artist Steve Aiton, local artist and community member Catherine Howard and the children at three local schools to produce an animation — and Alfie the tooth fairy took flight! The complete animation can be viewed below.

Alfie is an unwise Tooth Fairy who loves fast food and soft drinks, so he spends his time saving up his money and sneaking away to the burger shop. His unhealthy lifestyle eventually catches up with him and he crashes into a tree because he has become overweight and his eyesight has been affected. Alfie is taken to the Healing Tree where his Black Box is examined and found to be full of sugar — Alfie has developed diabetes. Alfie is taught all about diabetes and its complications, and what he can do to minimise his risk. Alfie becomes a new fairy — health conscious and fit. But this is not just a story about individual redemption — Alfie goes on to educate and motivate his community of Tooth Fairies so they will not fall into the same trap, and so saves his whole community.

Alison Dimer, Writer and Aboriginal Health Worker
Western Desert Kidney Health Project, Rural Clinical School of Western Australia, Kalgoorlie, WA.
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