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How you can make your community’s mental health a Priori-Tea this October

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Bushfires. Coronavirus pandemic. Climate change. Isolation. Closed borders.

This year we have had many impacts on our communities, our wellbeing, and our mental health.

We have already seen significant increases to demand for mental health services across the country, and research suggests this is likely to increase.

So do you know where to go when you need a helping hand with your mental health, or that of a loved one?

Mental Health Month (MHM) is held annually in the ACT every October. It aims to raise community awareness and understanding of mental illness, reduce the stigma and discrimination associated with mental illness, and promote positive mental health and wellbeing.

With a strong interest in supporting Canberrans through their own mental health issues, MHM 2020 is coordinated by the Mental Health Community Coalition ACT and highlights community organisations that are here to support us.

The impacts of the pandemic have resulted in a different way of delivering the MHM program this year. Mental Health Month launches online via Facebook Live at 10 am on 10/10/2020 and on Instagram @mentalhealthmonthact, to coincide with World Mental Health Day.

This virtual launch consists of a video series of heartfelt stories from some of the region’s community mental health providers, including CatholicCare Canberra & Goulburn, Woden Community Services, Wellways ACT, Meridian and Carers ACT. This video series was created to showcase how community mental health providers can support you in your mental health journey.

The theme for the month is ‘Conversations and Connections’ and Canberrans are being asked to take a break in their workplaces or community and make mental health a priority by hosting their own ‘Wellbeing Priori-Tea’ event.

By registering to host a Wellbeing Priori-Tea with your friends, co-workers or community groups you will be able to create a space where you can open up about mental health over a cuppa.

You will receive a Wellbeing Resource Pack with registration, that gives you tips and help to navigate these conversations, as well as the connections that may be needed to mental health services in the region.

You can also connect personally with some of these community organisations by attending one of the many fantastic events in the MHM calendar of events.

So this Mental Health Month we encourage you to get involved – connect with your community, start a conversation over a cuppa and make time for mental health.

Becoming involved this Mental Health Month

  • Register your own event on the Mental Health Month calendar of events
  • Share pictures of your Priori-Tea on Facebook and Instagram #WellbeingPrioriTEA
  • Attend one of the events listed
  • Pause and reflect on your own mental health and wellbeing
  • Reach out and ask someone how they are feeling

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