GRAMS attends the 6th National Social and Emotional Wellbeing Forum in Perth

Published on Friday, 17 March 2023 at 4:40:48 PM

GRAMS Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Social and Emotional Wellbeing team, Suicide Prevention Coordinator, Health Promotion Officer and Social Support Officer all attended the 6th National Social and Emotional Wellbeing (SEWB) Forum in Perth from the 27 February to 3 March 2023.

The key theme of the forum was helping rethink and reshape the delivery of mental health services. The forum brought together experts and professionals from the mental health field to discuss the service delivery for an improved mental health sector. There was also the opportunity to openly discuss integration, collaboration and delivery of mental health services and reducing the stigma associated with suicidality.

National Suicide Prevention & Trauma Recovery Project Director Meagan Krakouer and The Georgatos Foundation Founder Gerry Georgatos hosted the event. Both are well known for their humanitarian work for the Banksia Hills Youth Detention Centre and campaigners for human rights issues faced by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, who are among the highest rates of suicide in Australia.

“There is no greater legacy than to improve the lot of others, to change lives, to save lives”, Gerry Georgatos.

The forum featured a diverse range of key speakers with expertise in integrating an Aboriginal cultural lens into their important work within their respective communities, bringing a wealth of knowledge and skills to the discussion. The discussions on Aboriginal SEWB included content on the challenges faced by Aboriginal people who are among the most marginalised and disadvantage by the systems in places which act as barriers to their health and well-being. Sadly, in some cases, these individuals may feel like they have no other options and consider ending their lives. The forum sparked meaningful discussions and provided valuable insights into tackling poor mental health and reducing risks associated with suicidality.

Over the week GRAMS provided two workshops the first delivered by GRAMS CEO Deborah Woods regarding tackling drug and alcohol abuse in the Aboriginal communities that contribute to poor mental health. This session discussed how to provide community support to families affected by drug and alcohol abuse as well as change drinking trends through abstinence and awareness initiatives. 

The second workshop was presented by GRAMS Acting Suicide Prevention Coordinator David Batty with support from GRAMS Clinical Lead SEWB May Doncon and Health Communication Resources CEO Dane Waters. Together they provided a practical workshop that opened the discussion around evaluating the psychological impacts sustained by healthcare workers and how providing training and professional development can increase staff satisfaction and retention by healing the healers and providing support for the mental health and SEWB workers.

“The highlight of attending the forum was not only the opportunity to meet and network with the key speakers in person but also to hear the stories of hope, survival and healing from individuals to healing their community”, David Batty. 

If you or anyone you know is struggling with mental health, call the numbers below for help:

GRAMS 9956 6555

Lifeline 13 11 14

Kids Helpline 1800 551 800

Suicide Call Back Service 1300 659 800

Beyond Blue 1300 224 636

Crisis Care 24/7 1800 199 008

Midwest Ribbon for Life 0428 381 545

In an emergency call 000

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