What's new at Mind

Want the latest News & Media? Mind will keep you up to date and informed.

News & Media

Mind will keep you up to date and informed about news and media at Mind and in the mental health area. 

Mind Carer Development Fund 

On 26 March 2014, guests and Mind staff gathered at The Boulevard in Kew to celebrate the launch of an exciting new initiative for mental health carers — the Mind Carer Development Fund. The fund is an important outcome of the recent merger between Mind Australia and ARAEFMI Victoria, who have both contributed $750,000 as part of a shared commitment to developing services and supports for families and carers of people with mental ill-health.

Mind’s Deputy Chief Executive Margaret Grigg emceed the event and introduced the guest speakers — Jeremy Coggin, Andrew Concannon, Ruth Vine and Julian Gardner — who talked about the merger, explained the purpose and role of the Mind Carer Development Fund and introduced the Advisory Committee. The launch was wrapped up with the unveiling of a plaque that acknowledged the occasion and the inaugural screening of a new Mind video clip.

While the afternoon was an incredible success, the real success will be seen in this new and progressive phase of development for families and carers. Mind is strongly committed to improving the family and carer agenda, listening to families and carers, undertaking research and seeking to inform and influence stakeholders about the needs of families and carers.


As part of the Mind Colloquium Series, Annie Bruxner made a presentation on the topic: Understanding the support needs and preferences of people with psychosocial disability.

This presentation highlighted some findings from Annie’s most recent project which explored the support needs and preferences of people with psychosocial disability who may be eligible to receive an individualised funding package. The primary aim of this study was to influence and inform the development of the current service system through improved understanding of peoples’ preferences for support or what will help them achieve a “Good Life”.

Fintry Community merge with Mind Australia

 Mind Australia is pleased to welcome Fintry Community, who formally merged with the organisation on 3 February 2014. Fintry Community is a small community-based organisation that was established in 1986 and has provided a secure and supportive environment for people living with co-occurrence symptoms of mental illness, and people affected by drug, alcohol and gambling dependence. The service is based in Clifton Hill and provides support for people living in long term accommodation and a Community Access Program. Fintry will become part of the Mind Inner City area.

 Mind would like to welcome all the clients, families and carers, staff and community supporters associated with Fintry Community. We look forward to working together and continuing the tradition of high quality services to the community.

Carers, Please Tell Your Stories

ARAFMI Australia is currently seeking personal stories from mental health carers for their website ‘My National Voice’. The ‘My National Voice’ website raises awareness of carer issues through publishing personal stories online, and collating these stories for national advocacy initiatives. The website is currently being developed and they are planning to launch it mid this year. For more information; contact Jane Henty on arafminational@mindaustralia.org.au  or call (03) 9457 7130. Subsequently we will discuss with you the next steps of writing your story. You may be anonymous if you wish.  For fact sheet please click here.

Major New Fellowship Award in Mental Health

Australians active in the mental health field are encouraged to apply for a new award to promote better understanding of mental illness.

The Hocking Fellowship, offered by SANE Australia, aims to promote better mental health of Australians through advancing the public understanding of mental illness, of how treatment and support can be improved, and how all those affected, including family and friends, can be empowered to help themselves.

The Fellowship celebrates the contribution of Barbara Hocking OAM (Executive Director of SANE Australia 1995-2012) in her work towards a better life for all people affected by mental illness.

‘We encourage Australians active in the mental health field with the capacity to use what they have learned, including those living with a mental illness, carers, and professionals to apply,’ said SANE Australia CEO Jack Heath.

The Fellowship includes a grant of up to $20,000 to cover travel, accommodation, and associated costs. Applications and enquiries should be sent to hocking.fellowship@sane.org by the closing date of 28 February 2014.

For more information go to: http://www.sane.org/hocking-award

Victorian Government’s Mental Health Review Needs You

An important review of Victoria’s mental health system is underway and needs your help. The review, which started in December last year, will include consultations with consumers, families and carers, self-help groups, volunteers and workers in mental health services - including peer workers and recipients of peer support services. 

These consultations are taking place in January and February with the aim of finding the best practice in design and management of programs covered by the review which include a variety of Mind programs including respite, ARAFEMI carer helpline and services and our Pals program. To see the list of relevant programs and activities being reviewed, please click here.

The consultations will be run by Deloitte Access Economics at venues in Ringwood, Dandenong, Prahran and Melbourne’s CBD as well as Sale and Prahran. Spaces are limited and you will be reimbursed with a $53.40 Coles Group & Myer card for your time. If you are interested, please contact Sasha Zegenhagen at Deloitte on 9671 6218 or szegenhagen@deloitte.com.au

There will also be surveys for you to complete either online or on paper, so please, watch this space and we will let you know when they are available.

The review, to be completed by mid-2014, will advise the State Government on how current funding may more effectively support consumers, families and carers and strengthen their participation in the mental health system.

A highly qualified reference group has already been working with the Department of Health on preparatory research and analysis.

For more information, please visit the Department of Health website.

 The Book of Loco

The Book of Loco is a production featuring in our 2014 season which looks at the personal experiences of performer Alirio Zavarce covering mental illness and his journey of reaching his goals by drawing on the support of the community around him.

For further information click on link


 ARAFEMI Victoria and Mind Australia officially merge

At a beautiful ceremony on Monday 9 December 2013, ARAFEMI Victoria and Mind Australia officially merged. Mind Australia’s Chair, Julian Gardner, and ARAFEMI’s President, Anne Holland, are pictured at the function. Attended by the members of both boards, senior managers and special guests, the organisations marked the beginning of a new, strategically significant partnership.

The merger is an exciting development which both and will deliver the next generation of services and supports for consumers, families and carer.

Reform of Mental Health Community Support Services in Victoria and the roll out of DisabilityCare Australia are presenting significant opportunities for development and innovation. Mind and ARAFEMI Victoria wish to position ourselves to respond effectively to these emerging opportunities to expand and improve family and carer inclusion. We consider that our shared values and vision and combined efforts can improve outcomes in the short term and provide a platform for significant development in the emerging funding environment.

Arafemi & Mind Australia merger

Somewhere Over the Rainbow – Art Exhibition

An exhibition that celebrates the diversity of the women working in the Amaroo Art Studio. For further information, click here.

Join Our Insurance Campaign

If you have lived experience of mental illness and believe you have been treated unfairly by an insurer, you can join a campaign working to make insurance fair and accessible. 

Mind Australia has joined with the Mental Health Council of Australia, an independent mental health organisation, and the anti-depression initiative beyondblue in tackling the issue of improving access to insurance for people with mental illness. 

The MHCA and beyondblue started the campaign and believe people with a history of mental illness (and even people who insurance companies suspect could have an undiagnosed mental illness) are often unfairly refused access to a range of insurance products. 

They hear stories about people having difficulties with life insurance, total and permanent disability insurance, income protection and travel insurance. These organisations believe insurers may be discriminating against people with lived experience of mental illness without a reasonable legal basis. 

So they are asking people in this position to come forward and tell your stories about ways in which insurance companies may have discriminated against them because of their lived experience. You can do this in the following ways:                                                                            

Visit http://www.beyondblue.org.au/about-us/programs/system-reform-and-access/discrimination-in-insurance/tell-us-your-story and fill out the simple form regarding your story; 

Call Emily Clay at the council on (02) 6285 3100 or email emily.clay@mhca.org and tell her your story; 

Or call Sally Fisher at Mind Australia on (03) 9455 7991 and she can take down your story or send it to Sally at Mind Australia, 86-92 Mount Street, Heidelberg Vic 3084.

Your story is important and change can only come if we all work together.

NDIA Strategic Plan

The NDIA Strategic plan has now been released on the NDIA website seeking public comment by 16 January 2014.

The NDIA Board has developed a draft 2013-16 Strategic Plan that outlines the vision, mission and goals for the NDIA to ensure we build and manage a world leading National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) for all Australians.

The Strategic Plan can be accessed by clicking the following link: http://www.ndis.gov.au/document/671.

The Sunnyboy Documentary with Q&A session

Mind Australia recently co-sponsored The Sunnyboy Documentary. A summary of the documentary can be found at www.thesunnyboy.com.au 

The showing was FREE and attendees donated to one of the co-sponsoring organisations, to help continue providing support for and enabling ground-breaking research into finding the best hope for recovery for Australians with mental ill-health.

If you missed the event but would still like to donate, you can do so to any one of the following co-sponsors. 
MHCA http://mhca.org.au/get-involved/donate
Mind Australia https://imind.mindaustralia.org.au/donate
Psychosis Australia Trust http://www.psychosisaustralia.com.au/support-pat/

Seeking National Mental Health Leaders - National Call for Nominations

The National Mental Health Commission is seeking nominations from Australians of all backgrounds for a mentoring and development program aimed at supporting existing leaders and advocates, and finding the next generation of mental health leaders. Specifically, the Commission is seeking nominations of those with lived experience of mental health issues, either as a person living with mental illness or as a primary family member or other significant support person. If you or anyone you know might be interested visit:

http://www.mentalhealthcommission.gov.au/our-work/seeking-national-mental-health-leaders.aspx to find out more.


  Farewell to Bill Healy

Bill Healy, the former Board Chair and a director of Mind for 22 years, has resigned from the Mind Board and has taken up a new position as Board Chair of The Victorian Institute of Forensic Mental Health (Forensicare). Bill has provided direction, wisdom and support for the work of Mind  over these many years.  He has made a real difference through his contribution and will be missed.  We wish him well in the future.

   (photo: l-r Julian Gardner, Mind Chair with Bill Healy)


ARAFEMI Victoria to merge with Mind Australia

In an exciting development which will significantly improve services for families and carers of people with mental ill-health in Victoria, ARAFEMI Victoria has agreed to merge with Mind. The merger will proceed later this year and deliver the next generation of services and supports for consumers, families and carers. To read more, click here

PIR Support facilitator positions available across the organisation

New partnership in mental health services for Northern Melbourne

A new service for people with severe and persistent mental illness has been announced for the northern region of Melbourne. Mind is currently advertising to fill PIR Support Facilitator positions across the organisation. For further information, click here

New partnership expands mental health services for Melbourne's outer east

A new service for people with severe and persistent mental illness has been announced for the local government areas of Knox, Maroondah and the Yarra Ranges. For further information, click here

Transition to Support Facilitation: a 2 day training

Mind is offering the opportunity for interested workers to participate in the newly developed training for workers who will be moving into PIR Support Facilitation or Care Coordination roles.  For more information, click here

DisabilityCare (NDIS) to be rolled out across Victoria

The Victorian Coalition and Commonwealth Governments reached a historic agreement that will allow for the full roll-out of the NDIS, now known as DisabilityCare Australia, across Victoria. 

The agreement will provide more than 100,000 Victorian residents with significant or profound disability choice and control over the care and support they receive.

For bulletin click here.

Expanding mental health services in Ballarat

Mind Australia is delighted that it will receive an additional $658,805 of Federal Government funding for its Personal Helpers and Mentors (PHaMs) work in Ballarat.

Click here to view full press release.

Indonesia to end practice of shackling mental patients

Indonesia says it's committed to ending the widespread practice of shackling the mentally ill.

The practice, known locally as pasung, was banned in 1977 but has continued to thrive because of inadequate mental health services, especially in rural areas. 

Mind's Senior Business Development Officer, Anthony Strattford speaks to ABC Radio Australia about this important news. 

For full interview click on link below.


Mind sponsors a forum on what the NDIS means for mental health service providers

Mind Australia held a forum for stakeholders in mental health, including service providers, consumers and carers, to consider the likely impacts of the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) on the delivery of mental health supports and resources.

The forum was chaired by Dr Rhonda Galbally AO and addressed by the Hon Mark Butler MP, Minister for Mental Health and Ageing. People heard from presenters from government and other service providers who are involved in the implementation of the NDIS.

Click on the folowing links to download more information including the day’s program, a sample of speaker presentations and a summary of the key points from participant discussions.

  1. NDIS Program
  2. NDIS Forum discussion - key points
  3. David Meldrum presentation
  4. Frank Quinlan presentation
  5. Margaret Springgay presentation
  6. Alexandra Gunning presentation
  7. Roland Naufal presentation

The Prevention and Recovery Care Exit Survey

This report outlines the process and outcomes of conducting an exit survey over a three month trial by three participating Mind Australia Prevention and Recovery Care (PARC) services. The report is written by Dr Lisa Brophy, and Michael Loh, Service Development Manager at Mind.

Click here to download a copy of the report.

Using Outcome Measures in Mind Australia: discussion paper

Mind Australia has a commitment to examining the quality and effectiveness of its services, and outcome measurement provides an important contribution to this commitment. Click here for more information.

Research publication

The THI (Trauma & Homelessness Initiative) has just released the literature review on The Nature of the Relationship between Traumatic Events in People’s Lives and Homelessness. For more information click here.

Press Release: New Mental Health Act for Victoria

“The policy reforms proposed by the Baillieu Government for a new Mental Health Act are welcome and necessary”, said Gerry Naughtin, Chief Executive of Mind Australia, a major provider of mental health services in Victoria.

“We congratulate the Government and Minister Wooldridge for taking the time to refine and improve on the earlier proposals by the Brumby Government”, he said. “There has been extensive public consultation in the development of these proposals and there is strong community support for the principles contained in this policy initiative”, he said.

Mind considers that the proposed Mental Health Act is based on a sound set of principles that will strengthen the capacity of people with mental illness to exercise their rights when they are seriously ill. Click here for the complete statement by Mind Australia.


Contrast Font Size