Parliamentary Secretary for the Illawarra and South Coast Gareth Ward MP has today announced that local residents are being encouraged to ‘Share the Journey’ by getting involved in Mental Health Month this October, with the NSW Government calling for people to come alongside family, friends or colleagues who are living with mental illness or having mental health issues.
Mr Ward said that Mental Health Month is a reminder that friends, loved ones, work colleagues, or even ourselves, might need help.
“Mental health issues will affect one in five Australians every year, and those who don’t experience mental health challenges personally will most likely know someone who does,” he said.
“Mental Health Month helps to raise the community’s awareness and understanding of mental health, and events are happening across the Illawarra and South Coast.
“NSW Mental Health Month falls annually in October. People across the State come together to hold events and promote good mental health and wellbeing in their local communities,” Mr Ward said.
The NSW Minister for Mental Health Tanya Davies said the message this year is that you don’t have to be a mental health expert, just a supportive friend and a good listener.
“Mental Health Month gives members of the community the opportunity to connect with each other and play an active role in the conversation about mental health to tackle the stigma that still exists around mental illness,” Mrs Davies said.
“We want the message to be clear, if you notice changes in behaviour from those around you or in yourself, seek help, reach out and talk to your GP about supports that are available.”
If you or someone you know needs urgent crisis support call Lifeline 13 11 14, or for local mental health services phone the NSW Mental Health Line on 1800 011 511.
For more information or to get involved in Mental Health Month 2018, please visit the website at: mentalhealthmonth.wayahead.org.au.