September 2017
View this email in your browser
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.

Debbie Childs
CEO, HelpingMinds

Real Life Stories

The family pictured above is the beautiful Robinson family from Carnarvon, they along with many other carers and consumers have agreed to share their stories on film. There are many reasons for the recording of these stories which include:
  • Reducing the stigma around mental health
  • Highlighting that so many carers do not even realise that they are carers
  • Showing that mental health doesn't just affect one person in a family
  • Showing there is support available for the whole family
All of these short films will be officially released during Mental Health Week at the beginning of October - we will keep you posted. However, in the meantime here is a sneak preview of Terry's story.
Terry's Story

Wellbeing Wonderland

During the July school holidays, the Talk It Out program based in Swan, facilitated a two day workshop for a group of fifteen girls aged between 10 to 13 years. The aim of this free workshop was to provide an opportunity for the girls to build friendships and develop their social skills; to encourage hopeful and positive thinking about their futures; to experience different mindfulness and relaxation techniques including yoga and meditation; and for the girls to develop a sense of their self-worth and their value.
Read more

Hospital Admissions 

Families have told us they are often excluded.
Here’s what we are doing about it

Cath has joined HelpingMinds as our Project Officer, working to assist staff in mental health inpatient sites to engage with family members and friends who are in a caring role for the person who has been admitted. Cath will work in collaboration with staff on the wards. A key worker will be identified as a ‘Carer Champion’. The aim will be to identify practical ideas that work well for the individual, their family and staff. A resources toolkit will be developed.
This project builds on the release of the Practical Guide for Working with Carers of People with Mental Illness. You can download a copy here:
Thanks to the WA Mental Health Commission and our national peak body Mental Health Carers Australia for providing funding towards this project. We hope to share the results with you in January.


A Father's Story


"I learnt how to talk to my son. In the beginning I wasn’t open to my son’s problems because I’d had traumatic experiences with mental health in the past. By talking to other people, and learning about my son’s issues, I realised that we should talk about it. Talking about it makes everyone feel better."
Read full story
Family Centred Practice Workshop
Paul O' Halloran
HelpingMinds welcomed Paul O’Halloran, a Senior Clinical Psychologist, to present a free workshop on the benefits of including family and friends of people living with mental health issues in the individual’s recovery journey.

This interactive workshop addressed barriers and obstacles around implementing family centred practice and confidentiality, and discussed best practice family centred interventions including addressing the needs of children whose parents have a severe mental health issue.

It was a great morning and was wonderful to see representatives from MIFWA, Neami, Headspace, Mission Australia, mentalhealthmatters2, Intelife, Joondalup Hospital, Graylands Hospital, Midland Hospital, and Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital.

Refurbished Counselling Rooms
Many of the counselling rooms across the HelpingMinds' offices have seen a bit of a makeover to give our visitors a more relaxing and comfortable environment to talk in. A special thank you to Arlene at AtHome Furniture in Osborne Park for their generous assistance.

A recent article reports that better designed therapy spaces can improve mental health treatment, read the article here
Health Promotions Team
The health promotion team have had a busy few months, we have:
  • Had stalls at and attended the Positive Schools Conference and Mental Health Conference
  • Attended NAIDOC Week
  • Attended multiple school expos promoting HelpingMinds and positive mental health
The pictures of these are on our Instagram page
Reconciliation Week and NAIDOC Celebrations
July saw many of the HelpingMinds teams participate in NAIDOC activities across WA. Have a look at the photos at the link below.

Also as part of National Reconciliation Week HelpingMinds were pleased to welcome the acclaimed Olman Walley who performed an uplifting Welcome to Country at the quarterly staff meeting. HelpingMinds staff also took the opportunity to formally hand over the draft Reconciliation Action Plan to CEO Debbie Childs.

Write a short recovery story for payment
PeerZone Toolkit (aka Swell) in New Zealand is developing information for people with mental distress and their supporters. Each story in the Toolkit discusses people’s experiences of managing one of the challenges in the ‘Relationships’ and ‘Purpose and belief’ domains. People who submit a story that is published will receive a NZD $100 Amazon gift voucher and a free copy of ‘Madness Made Me’ by Mary O’Hagan. 
Email your inquiries and stories to
HelpingMinds in Medical Centres across WA
HelpingMinds Brochures are now being featured in over 120 medical centres across WA, which have over 350,000 visit per month. The Medical Centres are located from Pinjarra up to Port Hedland.

If you know of somewhere that you think HelpingMinds brochures could be displayed please contact us at
Your Thoughts
We are always keen to receive feedback about the content of the newsletter. Please send any comments here 
Copyright © *|2015|* *|HelpingMinds, Mental Health Carers Arafmi WA|*, All rights reserved.

182 Lord Street, Perth WA 6000  
P: 08 9427 7100 or P: 1800 811 747

Want to change how you receive these emails?
You can update your preferences or unsubscribe from this list


This email was sent to <<Email Address>>
why did I get this?    unsubscribe from this list    update subscription preferences
HelpingMinds · The Carers Centre · 182 Lord Street, · Perth, WA 6000 · Australia

Email Marketing Powered by Mailchimp