Spring is finally here, it's so lovely to see the flowers and trees beginning to bloom. A great tip I have found to improve my mental well-being is to spend time in nature as much as you can. Breathing in fresh air and exposure to greenery is calming. Go to the beach, walk at your local park or go to the hills.
The last few months have been busy for all of our team at HelpingMinds, including myself. I have been travelling across Australia presenting at conferences which included:
- Mental Health Conference in Perth where both Patrick Hardwick (HelpingMinds President) and I presented 'The Practical Guide' to both Carers and Practitioners. We asked for everyone's input on how we can make The Guide useful and worthwhile for everyone in practice.
- International Mental Health Conference in Queensland presenting 'The importance of engaging with carers' explaining The Practical Guide
- TheMHS Conference in Sydney giving two presentations
- 'Explaining the HelpingMinds online education and supports
- Partnering with Outcare and the Start Court to improve long term outcomes for families
- In addition to this I was on the panel for the Carers Forum where we discussed the important issues facing mental health carers
The main aim of attending and presenting at these conferences was to raise awareness around carers and the importance of involving them in all stages of their loved ones recovery plan. I mentioned the Practical Guide above which is a document for practitioners and clinicians that recommends 6 standards to work towards which will ensure that carers are involved. A copy of the Practical Guide can be found here
HelpingMinds now has an annual operating revenue in excess of $7 million and employs over 85 staff. In reviewing the governance of the organisation and to ensure we can deliver our strategic plan effectively, we are recommending the time has come to transition to a company limited by guarantee. As a charity, we will continue to report to the Australian Charities and Not-for-profit Commission (ACNC) but will additionally be governed by legislation through the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC). At our Special General Meeting on August 15th 2017, all members present voted in favour of this recommendation.
This change means HelpingMinds will have the opportunity to seek funding and services outside of WA allowing us to expand our existing community mental health supports services more broadly throughout Australia.
We will always remain a not for profit charity. Our purpose remains as it always has.
This continues to be an exciting time for our organisation as we continue to grow our service supports and networks throughout WA and beyond.