Authors: Gil Malone and Ros Thomas, VIC
Event: 2006 TheMHS Conference
Subject: Families, Relationships & Recovery, EMOTIONAL WELL-BEING, FAMILY/CARER ISSUES, INNOVATIONS, PROMOTION OF MENTAL HEALTH, RURAL / REMOTE MENTAL HEALTH ISSUES, STIGMA
Type of resource: Conference Presentations and Papers
Abstract: Carers are an overlooked valuable resource in rural communities, frequently providing initial assistance to family members with mental health problems (Henderson S, Andrews G, Hall W. 2000). Carers in this rural region participated in a focus group and identified key issues affecting them. In response Local rural mental health services, in partnership with relevant service providers in North East Victoria devised an innovative, health promotion activity aimed at redressing some of these issues. Funded respite /education weekends were organized; the locations were selected for their ambience enabling participants to enjoy activities beyond the designated program, which was; Mental Health First Aid, (MHFA) education (Kitchener B, Jorm T. 2002), and a selection of self care activities. The participant outcome aligned with the aim, increasing participant’s knowledge of mental illnesses and pathways to care, promotion of personal mental health and wellbeing self care strategies, a sense of rejuvenation and decreased isolation.