Carers Voice is a program for mental health carers to inform service delivery and policy development in the ACT. We do this through supporting carers in;
See below for our upcoming events and opportunities to influence change in the mental health system!
The answer? Not yet, but we're heading in the right direction! Carers ACT 2016 Mental Health Forum, "Are we there yet?" held on 6 July 2016 brought together local and national expertise from service providers, carers, consumers, peak body representatives and more on a rainy Canberra day to discuss the systemic changes in mental health. Key themes that emerged throughout the discussion included:
Integration was the buzzword of the day, with key speakers and panellists highlighting the importance for the three areas of mental health change, (ie. ACT Health services, national mental health reforms and the NDIS) to work together. Providing seamless support to consumers and carers, all areas of the mental health space will need to be working in unison. Facilitated by Janet Hopkins, Senior Consultant at ConNetica, the forum offered discussion throughout the day and included guest speakers and panellists with local and national expertise in the changes that are occurring in mental health. Carers ACT sincerely thanks all participants in the 2016 Mental Health Forum, “Are we there yet?” Whilst it was clear from the discussion that there is a great deal of uncertainty, there was also an atmosphere of hope and opportunity. As one delegate responded, “We have a bright future but a bumpy road ahead to get there. Seems like we are on a good path together”.
Carers ACT will be releasing a report shortly on the forum alongside key recommendations for what needs to be the focus moving forward, watch this space!
- Alexandra Scetrine Mental Health Policy Officer
Photo: Gaylene Coulton (Chief Executive Capital Health Network) pictured left with Dee McGrath (CEO Carers ACT). Both Gaylene and Dee were part of the panel in the afternoon Q and A session, taking mental health questions from consumers, carers and people working in the sector.
Mental Health Carers are invited to join us for some lively discussion over a biscuit and a cuppa. Held on the last Friday of each month these sessions:
* Focus on a different topic each month * Are driven by carers’ interests and concerns
July's topic is the ACT Mental Health Act 2016. We will discuss in more detail the Advanced Consent Directions, Advanced Agreements and being a Nominated Person and view the online sample forms and have the opportunity to ask questions.
Date // Friday 29 July
ACACIA: THe ACT consumer & Carer Mental Health Unit at ANU are seeking Mental Health Consumers and Carers to be interviewed as part of a research project examining how mental health stories can be ethically told, considering both consumer and carer perspectives. A $20 gift voucher is being offered to those who participate in the study. For more information or to express your interest email email@example.com. Click here to read the flyer
Ask Anything Monday: Have a question you feel too apprehensive to ask?
How do you take part? Register here
Email your question to firstname.lastname@example.org with Ask Anything Monday in the subject line. Each Monday the SANE forum team collate the questions and post them (ensuring you remain anonymous). Moderators and members answer the questions during the week. Even if you have not provided a question you might be able to provide support or advice to another member.
Would you like to volunteer your time by working directly with ACT Health to get mental health carers issues heard?
Our Carer Representative program is a group of dedicated volunteers with mental health caring experience that sit on ongoing committees or short term working groups working on various aspects of mental health. We receive invitations from ACT Health for passionate carers who are looking to get to the heart of the systemic issues and work to improve ACT Mental health care for carers.
A number of opportunities have become available for mental health carers to sit on committees and speak up on carers issues!
Contact Sarah at email@example.com for more information about these roles and responsibilities.
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