Support for Mental Health
The 12 September 2019 is R U OK? Day, a national day of action for reaching out to friends and family simply by asking: "are you okay?". Based on the idea that 'a conversation could change a life', this year the suicide prevention organisation RUOK is encouraging Australians to 'Trust the Signs, Trust your Gut & Ask R U OK?'. The day is a reminder to reach out if you notice someone behaving differently or seems to be struggling. You can find local events and mental health resources at ruok.org.au.
One in five Australians are affected by mental illness in any given year, and almost half of all Australians will experience a mental illness within their lifetime. Yet over half of people with mental illness will not seek help, according to Black Dog Institute. Aside from access to health services, a major setback in seeking help is the stigma impacting mental health issues and conversations. A range of organisations are working to eliminate this stigma through awareness and outreach.
In October, nations all over the world are recognising and raising awareness about the importance of mental health. Mental Health Week in Victoria is 5-11 October 2019.
World Mental Health Day is 10 October, hosted by the World Federation for Mental Health working with Mental Health Australia for the purpose of global education, awareness, and advocacy. This year's 'Do You See What I See?' challenge is an effort to raise awareness, empathy, and positiveness to change the cultural stigma surrounding mental health issues. World Mental Health Day is calling on individuals to make a #MentalHealthPromise to do one thing to reduce the stigma and make it easier for their peers to seek help and support. You can find more information at 1010.org.au.
If someone you know or you are struggling with mental health, organisations such as BeyondBlue 1300 224 636, the Black Dog Institute 02 9382 2991, and our very own Headspace (for 12-25 year olds) 03 9006 6500 at Level 1/360 Burwood Road, Hawthorn are there to provide professional support. Lifeline is just a phone call away at 13 11 14.