On Wednesday we proudly launched Walk the Talk. The video is a Mental Health Australia mini-documentary production, created in collaboration with Six O’Clock Advisory, that examines the state of mental health in Australia, including the people, policies and organisations that support Australians experiencing mental ill health every day.
Each episode, hosted by sports journalist and mental health advocate Brad McEwan, will see Brad out walking and talking with some of the sector’s leading minds about the complex challenges facing governments, communities, and individuals, and the many opportunities that exist to improve the mental health of all Australians.
Each episode also features an individual’s personal story of mental ill health, providing an important opportunity for individuals to share their lived experience so that they may help others to achieve mental wellness.
In Episode one, host Brad McEwan speaks to former chairman of the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission, Allan Fels AO, about his family’s experience of mental ill health. In his former position of Chair of the Australian National Mental Health Commission, Allan also shares his views on the value of including lived experience leadership and the role that it can play in the development and delivery of mental health services across all levels.
Brad also takes the time to speak to us one-on-one about his personal experience of mental ill health.
I would like to extend my personal thanks to Brad and Allan for embarking with us on this journey and acknowledge the Everymind team for their counsel.
Initial feedback has been overwhelming positive, thank you to those who have already contacted us, and I encourage you to share the video with your networks and audiences.
We welcome your feedback and look forward to your engagement of future episodes.
The impetus for this first episode has been to explore and discuss how and why lived experience is so critical.
Pleasingly, we saw this enacted in the disability sector in real-time this week with the appointment of Kurt Fernley AO as the new Chair of the National Disability Insurance Agency.
We acknowledge and applaud this announcement and the proactive approach shown by the Hon Bill Shorten MP, who also appointed two new board members, Graeme Innes and Maryanne Diamond, who both have lived experience with disability.
It is now time for the Government to extend this proactive approach to the mental health sector and deliver a reform plan that will take us forward to a more mentally well Australia. Starting now.
Finally, tomorrow signals the start of Mental Health Australia’s annual “Look after your mental health, Australia” awareness campaign for World Mental Health Day on 10 October. This year we invite all Australians to sign up for mindful habits for mental health through the lens of “Awareness, Belonging and Connection”. Visit lookafteryourmentalhealthaustralia.org.au to register and find out more.
Have a good weekend.