Khia De Silva has been ALPA's Nutrition Manager for over four years. Her passion and dedication to the role was recognised at the ALPA Managers Conference held in June where she received the ‘Living Our Values’ award.

Khia previously worked as a remote clinical dietitian for Darwin Dietitians and a Public Health Nutritionist for Top End Health Services – NT Government. In these roles, she was able to see the opportunities to improve remote stores which would improve the whole community’s diet but found it hard to make fundamental changes being in a government position outside of these businesses. When the ALPA Nutrition position became available Khia knew it was the perfect position for her – working beside Aboriginal leaders to make a real difference.   

As the ALPA Nutrition Manager Khia works closely with the ALPA Board of Directors to update the Store Nutrition Policy, lead multiple research projects to explore new ways to improve the healthiness of stores, and advocates for government and the non-government sector on the solution to improve access to healthy, and affordable foods and drinks. A key advocacy piece led by Khia was ALPA’s submission to the Parliamentary inquiry into community stores in remote Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities.

In the past four years, she has achieved huge wins for nutrition in remote communities in the NT and Far North Queensland. Firstly, she has been able to grow the ALPA nutrition team from one person to three improving nutrition capacity and helping to support stores further to implement the ALPA Health and Nutrition Strategy. Most recently, she worked with Menzies to develop a nutrition reporting system. The reporting system uses real-time store sales data to see which products contribute most to sugar intake as well as highlighting drink sales patterns and opportunities to increase fruit and veg sales. This allows the Board to make effective policy decisions on behalf of their communities to reduce sugar intake and increase fruit and veg intake. 

Khia is a constant advocate for people living in remote Australia. There is no person more fitting to receive the award.