Non-voting Members | Mental Health Australia

Non-Voting Members

ACT Mental Health Consumer Network
The ACT Mental Health Consumer Network is a consumer-led peak organisation representing the interests of mental health consumers in the ACT in policy and decision-making forums. The Network is committed to social justice and the inclusion of people with experience of mental illness. Their aim is to bring about a higher standard of health care in the mental health sector through representation, lobbying and active involvement in new developments in the mental health sector.

Anglicare Tasmania Inc
Anglicare TAS: Mental health is for everyone. We all have to face challenges in life.  People who have good mental health are more likely to be able to cope with the ups and downs. Our mental health is made up of our psychological, emotional and social wellbeing. This means it affects how we feel, think and behave each day. Our mental health also contributes to our decision-making process, how we cope with stress and how we relate to others in our lives.  Anglicare has a number of services to support people who are affected by mental health issues.

Anxiety Recovery Centre Victoria
The Anxiety Recovery Centre Victoria (ARCVic) is a state-wide, specialist mental health organisation, providing support, recovery and educational services to people and families living with anxiety disorders. They aim to support and equip people with knowledge and skills that will build resilience and recovery and reduce the impact of anxiety disorders.

Arafmi Ltd
Arafmi is a not for profit community organisation that has been providing quality supports to carers of people with mental health illness for over 40 years. We support our carers with services including carer support groups, carer education workshops and a 24 hour support phone line. We also support their loved ones with NDIS services including respite accommodation, support workers and support coordination. The message from Arafmi to our carers is: you are not alone.

Australian Red Cross
Australian Red Cross is building a better society based on people helping people.
They save lives and support people before and after disasters strike. They work to alleviate suffering during wars and conflict and promote the laws of war. And they work to assist the most vulnerable community members – no matter their circumstances.
They work with politicians, policy-makers, organisations and the public to improve the situation of the most vulnerable people in Australia and around the world.
They advocate based on direct experience and evidence, and empower people to speak out and take action to improve their lives.
They will always focus on the needs and perspectives of vulnerable people, in their areas of expertise.
They are bound their Fundamental Principles of Humanity, Impartiality, Neutrality, Independence, Voluntary service, Unity and Universality.

Being – Mental Health & Wellbeing
Being is the independent, state-wide peak organisation for people with a lived experience of mental illness (consumers) in NSW. They work with consumers to achieve and support systemic change. BEING acts as a bridge between mental health consumers and the government. An essential part of their role is to encourage mental health consumers to provide input into decision making at all levels concerning the way mental health services are provided. They gather information and lobby the decision makers about issues relevant to the mental health system. They seek to influence legislation and policy introduced by the government where it affects the lives of mental health consumers. BEING also keeps people informed of what is happening in the state through their Network.

Black Swan Health
Black Swan Health was established in 2014 as an independent not-for-profit company limited by guarantee. Its primary focus is the provision of high quality primary and mental health services that achieve positive health outcomes for the community. Black Swan Health emerged from changes in the funding and service delivery model for primary health care and in 2015, acquired all direct service delivery programs previously provided by Panorama Health Network (formerly known as Perth North Metro Medicare Local, Osborne GP Network and Osborne Division of General Practice). In 2016 Black Swan Health also acquired One Healthy Community (formerly operating as Fremantle Medicare Local). Black Swan Health and its related entities has operated primarily in the health, community and mental health sectors since 1993, developing a considerable body of knowledge in the delivery and evaluation of programs and services. As a registered provider of disability services, Black Swan Health has also embedded the principles of person centred practice into its day to day service delivery and has well established outcome based reporting and measurement systems in place across all areas.

breakthru is a national for purpose company that has worked with 1000’s of Australians over the past 25 years to access the services they need to live their best life.  Through the provision of high-quality person-centric programs, we enable  people to address mental health, employment, disability, homelessness and training needs.  At breakthru we deliver a range of mental health services that provide support to people to assist with mental health concerns to maintain the best possible social and emotional outcomes, and meet personal recovery goals.

Brisbane North PHN
Brisbane North PHN: Our vision is a community where good health is available for everyone. We work with others to create and deliver the best possible health and community care system for the people of our region.  We are one of 31 Primary Health Networks across Australia.  We support clinicians and communities in Brisbane’s northern suburbs, Moreton Bay Regional Council and parts of Somerset Regional Council.  Our region covers approximately 4100 km2 of urban, regional and rural areas, with a population of over one million.  Our key objectives are to:  * increase the efficiency and effectiveness of medical services for patients—particularly those at risk of poor health outcomes * improve coordination of care to ensure patients receive the right care, in the right place, at the right time.

Care Connect
Care Connect is a not-for-profit home care services organisation that has been providing aged care services at home, for over 20 years. Their expertise is providing the right advice and guidance for home care, and then finding and managing the right home care services to help people at home with day-to-day activities. Those activities can range from gardening or cleaning out the fridge, to joining an exercise group or seeing the grandkids play sport. They have no vested interest other than people’s wellbeing. They are not connected to a residential aged care provider or any religious organisations. They’re completely independent. They only employ independent Client Advisers with extensive experience in home care who provide genuine, independent home care advice. Care Connect have the largest network of trusted services providers nationally, offering people full peace of mind and the widest range of home care services in Australia.

Carers ACT
Carers ACT is the peak agency for Mental Health Carers in the ACT. We work in collaboration with mental health carers to ensure their voices are heard in the policies and programs that affect people with mental health conditions. We also work to raise awareness of the health and well-being needs of mental health carers and advocate for services and system changes that support mental health carers to improve their wellbeing. Our Mental Health Carers Voice program adopts deliberate democracy practices to ensure the voices of carers are considered, evidence based and representative of all.   

CatholicCare NT
CatholicCare NT is a not-for-profit organisation, providing counselling services and programs to individuals, couples, families, children groups, schools and agencies across the Northern Territory. They provide counselling and other support services in Darwin, Katherine, Alice Springs, Ltyentye Apurte, Finke, Titjikala,Tennant Creek, APY Lands, Nauiyu, Palmerston, Tiwi and Wadeye. CatholicCare NT is a social services agency of the Catholic Diocese of Darwin. And, is a member of Catholic Social Services Australia (CSSA), a national body representing the Catholic social services sector. Funding for their services is provided by both the Australian and Northern Territory governments.

Centacare Catholic Family Services
Centacare Catholic Family Services strive to support people in the community who have been marginalised and who are experiencing hardships and challenges in their lives. For the past 74 years, Centacare has worked to help people reach their full potential so they can participate in the community, regardless of their circumstances. Today this commitment underpins the 80 community services they deliver in 35 sites across the Catholic Archdiocese of Adelaide, in metropolitan and regional South Australia.

Centacare, Catholic Diocese of Ballarat Inc
Centacare Catholic Diocese of Ballarat deliver an extensive range of social welfare and outreach services across the Catholic Diocese of Ballarat and the Western District of Victoria. They provide services that support individuals, families and communities empowering people to bring about positive change while building community capacity.
Vision – Life giving communities in a Just Society.
Mission – To provide services which empower people to live with choice and opportunity.

Central Coast Family Support Service Inc
Central Coast Family Support Services Inc. was established in 1985 and is a not-for-profit community based service supporting families on the Central Coast of NSW. Their programs consist of:
• Family Support Home Visiting Program for families in the Gosford local government area with children 0 – 12 years.
• Young Parent Program for young parents and parents to be aged 13 – 19 years, covering the Central Coast.
• Early Intervention Disability Family Caseworker for families who have a child 0 – 8 years with a diagnosed disability, covering the Central Coast.
• Grandparent Support Program for grandparents who are the primary carers of their grandchildren, covering the Central Coast.
• Parenting Educative Program for families with children 0 – 8 years, covering the Central Coast
Vision – Central Coast Family Support Services Inc. is committed to a safe and just world in which difference is respected, learning is reciprocal and everyone has the opportunity to reach their full potential.

Centre for Rural and Remote Mental Health (CRRMH
Centre for Rural and Remote Mental Health (CRRMH) is a NSW state-wide organisation which is a major rural initiative of The University of Newcastle’s Faculty of Health and Medicine and the NSW Ministry of Health. We are committed to improving the mental health, wellbeing and resilience of rural and remote residents and we provide leadership in rural and remote mental health research and program delivery, working closely with rural communities and our valued partners to provide evidence-based service design, delivery and education. The CRRMH focuses on the promotion of good mental health and the prevention of mental illness; developing the mental health system to better meet the needs of people living in rural and remote regions; and understanding and responding to rural suicide. We are based in Orange NSW and our staff are located across rural and remote NSW. Our flagship Rural Adversity Mental Health Program (RAMHP) works on the frontline to inform, educate and connect individuals, communities and workplaces with appropriate services and programs. RAMHP has 20 Coordinators based across regional, rural and remote NSW who link people to local mental health services and resources, educate workplaces and communities about mental health and wellbeing and respond in times of natural disasters and severe adversity.

cohealth is a not-for-profit community health organisation that strives to improve health and wellbeing for all and lead the way in reducing health inequity in partnership with people and the communities in which they live. We have developed a unique model that provides a financially sustainable and impactful way to address social and environmental challenges and make a real difference.

Connections is a not-for-profit community service organisation that provides individual support, training, programs and advocacy in the support of mental health and wellbeing. Connections vision is to Improve Mental Health in the Community and achieves this by providing relevant evidence-based learning and life skill development programs that assist in the facilitation of recovery. Connections is committed to supporting people to be well resourced and make choices regarding all aspects of their individual support.  We encourage the people we work with to make informed decisions about every day and long-term lifestyle issues, and to direct their own journey towards well being and recovery.  Each person’s individual needs are identified, and the planning offered will be responsive to these needs. Connections acknowledges its responsibility to respond to the individual need of each participant, and ensures that the persons plan is guided by their individual goals and aspirations.

Consumers of Mental Health WA (CoMHWA)
CoMHWA is Western Australia’s peak body by, and for, people with a lived experience of mental health distress. Our core purpose is to strengthen and advance the voice, leadership and expertise of people with a lived experience of mental health issues and/or distress. We educate and raise awareness on consumer rights, promote peer support and the peer workforce, lead change with consumers and promote and support recovery and wellbeing with and for consumers.  

Converge International Ltd
Converge International: With over 60 years’ experience, Converge International is one of Australia’s largest and most trusted providers of EAP, critical incident, and wellbeing services.  Today we support over 2 million Australians through our extensive network of customers spanning all industries and sectors.  This depth of expertise enables us to share proven insights into the world of workplace behaviour, mental health and wellbeing that build mental fitness for employees and reduce people risk for organisations.  

Eating Disorders Queensland
Eating Disorders Queensland is a statewide, community-based not-for-profit organisation. We provide community support and treatment services for individuals and families living with and recovering from eating disorders, their carers and loved ones. By the sharing of recovery wisdom we aim to involve people with a lived experience, carers and family members and loved ones. We promote positive body image and prevention of eating disorders. Therapeutic interventions for individuals living with eating disorders and carer coaching/ support families/key support  and friends are also offered.

Employee Assistance Professional Assoc of Australasia
The Employee Assistance Professional Association of Australasia (EAPAA) is a National Professional Association with International Affiliation which aims to ensure the highest professional and ethical standards in EAP provision in Australasia. The role and responsibility of EAPAA is to:
– provide guidance for quality control for EAPs in Australasia
– define professional and ethical standards in EAP provision
– to provide recommendations for qualifications and issues of accreditation in service provision
– to provide information and advice to organisations with regards to standards of program design and operations
– to promote the concept and implementation of EAPs throughout Australasian organisations
– to support, provide research, development and training within the EAP profession to provide a forum for networking within the EAP community

Exercise & Sports Science Australia (ESSA)
Founded in 1991 Exercise & Sports Science Australia (ESSA), formerly known as the Australian Association for Exercise and Sports Science (AAESS), is a professional organisation which is committed to establishing, promoting and defending the career paths of tertiary trained exercise and sports science practitioners.
Vision – To enhance performance, health and well-being through the science of exercise and sport.
Mission – Lead and promote the excellence in exercise and sports science for the benefits of society and the professions.

FearLess Outreach
FearLess is a charity that works with people living with the consequences of post traumatic stress (often referred to as PTSD). We also help family members in any way affected by it. Our members come from all walks of life including those living with PTSD and their families or people who want to do their bit to make the lives of people living with post traumatic stress more enjoyable and fulfilling. Our work complements the activities of other community-based organisations and government agencies that provide services to people with post traumatic stress.

HelpingMinds offers quality and confidential mental health support to the family and friends of people living with mental health challenges across WA & Darwin. We also help people navigate the NDIS system and are a registered NDIS provider.

JobCo Employment Services Inc
JobCo. Employment Services Inc. is a community based not-for-profit employment service provider which has been delivering a comprehensive range of employment solutions to employers and jobseekers in the Melbourne and metropolitan region since 1994. JobCo’s mission is to ensure that any person seeking employment services, training, counselling or support is assisted. For all clients they will provide a unique and individual experience of service where people feel listened to and supported in overcoming barriers, achieving equality and meaningful inclusion into their local community. Their values are reflected both in the services they provide and in the investment of staff from a broad range of disciplines and cultural backgrounds.

Junaya Family Development Services
Junaya is a Community Based Family Support organisation for families with children 0 – 18 years old. JFDS runs a specialist project which supports families with children or young people experiencing learning difficulties and/ or challenging behaviours within the Blacktown LGA. We also offer Family Development Programs for the broader Western Sydney area that provide empowering, effective, efficient, and potentially transforming strategies, tips and resources which families can use to make positive change in their lives.

Lamp: Community base not for profit mental health support service working with consumers, carers, families and communities throughout the Lower South West WA. Lamp provides in home, school and community supports, centre-based and accommodation option. NDIS provider, Support Coordination and recovery Coaching programs. Children at risk and Indigenous youth and family services mental health.  

Lutheran Services
Lutheran Services provides quality and contemporary support and accommodation for older people, young people and their families, those living with disability or mental illness, and people experiencing domestic violence and hardship.  

Marathon Health
Marathon Health is a not-for-profit, registered charity delivering high quality health and wellbeing services to people in country NSW and the ACT. We are one of the few health organisations based in country Australia with the core purpose to identify, deliver and sustain services to people within these communities. We are passionate advocates for equal access to quality health services for people wherever they choose to live. We are a strong voice for rural health: we live here, we work here, and our future is here.

McAuley Community Services for Women
McAuley Community Services for Women provides much needed services for women and their children who are escaping family violence, and for women who are homeless. McAuley was created in 2008, when the Institute of Sisters of Mercy of Australia and Papua New Guinea joined two of its long-running services – McAuley House (formerly Regina Coeli) and McAuley Care (formerly Mercy Care). Today, they offer three programs for women and their children to help them rebuild their lives:
• McAuley House provides welcoming accommodation for women who are homeless or at risk of homelessness, and supports them on their journey towards independence.
• McAuley Care provides 24-hour crisis accommodation as well as refuges for women and their children escaping family violence.
• McAuley Works is an integrated and holistic program assisting women who have experienced family violence or homelessness into the workforce.

Mental Health Partners
Mental Health Partners offers help and strategic planning for workplace mental health and provides accredited or custom-designed mental health training courses which come with complimentary 24/7 support and aftercare from experienced professionals. Fully accredited, and highly knowledgeable, the Mental Health Partners team is always there when you need us, we’ll help you create and maintain a mentally healthy and productive work environment.

Mentally Healthy WA
Mentally Healthy WA is a community-based health promotion campaign that encourages people to take action to improve their mental health and wellbeing. This evidence-based campaign was developed primarily from research undertaken by Curtin University into people’s perceptions of mental health and the behaviours they believed protected and promoted good mental health. Following a successful pilot phase in six regional communities in Western Australian (2005–2007), the campaign was expanded state-wide.

Mentis Assist
Mentis Assist is one of Victoria’s primary not-for-profit, non-government, community managed mental health service providers supporting people with mental illness and psychiatric disabilities. With a 30 year history in the provision of high quality mental health support in the Southern/ Bayside/ peninsula region and more recently in the areas of Casey and Cardinia, they have supported thousands of people from all walks of life as they achieve their goals. Mentis Assist supports individuals and their families, offering a range of services including one on one outreach and in office support, service and care co-ordination, group activities, family support and a suite of training and meaningful activity options.

Micah Projects
Micah Projects is a not-for-profit organisation committed to providing services and opportunities in the community to create justice and respond to injustice. We engage with people experiencing adversity due to poverty, homelessness, mental illness, domestic violence, disability and all forms of discrimination. Micah Projects works to break down barriers that exclude people from housing, healthcare, employment, meaningful connections, and to give people a voice. We assist and support each individual or family including children, to resolve crisis, break social isolation, have a home, access health and community services, and build community. Micah Projects provides a range of support and advocacy services to individuals and families according to their needs and capacity. We acknowledge the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people of Australia (First Peoples) as the traditional owners of this land and support the right of Indigenous people to self-determination and cultural expression. The Queensland Government supports Micah Projects in our mission to build community and break social isolation through funding agreements for the provision of services in the community.  

MindShift Foundation
Led by Founder and CEO Elizabeth Venzin, Mindshift are a small but passionate group of industry leaders who donate theirtime and expertise with unrelenting dedication to promoting the importance of positive mental health. Mission: To help individuals, families, communities and workplaces recognise the importance of self-worth, to encourage preventative mental health intervention, and to offer support to the community through awareness campaigns, resources and public discussions. Vision: That a healthy wellbeing and positive mental health can be achieved by any person of any age and from any background.

Since 2003, Movember has funded more than 1,250 men’s health projects around the world, challenging the status quo, shaking up men’s health research and transforming the way health services reach and support men. Movember’s areas of focus include prostate cancer, testicular cancer, mental health and suicide prevention. Movember looks at mental health through a male lens, focusing on prevention, early intervention and health promotion. We’re working towards a world where men take action to be mentally well, and are supported by those around them.

Open Minds
Open Minds is a leading provider of mental health and disability support services in Queensland and Northern New South Wales. With more than 100 years of history, Open Minds is committed to its purpose of enabling an independent and positive future for people living with mental illness and disabilities. Open Minds is also a registered NDIS (National Disability Insurance Scheme) provider, with more than 400 employees spread across 35 locations.  We provide Support Workers and other professionals to enable our clients to live as independently as possible. Our services include: Supported Independent Living, Support Coordination, Community Access, Complex Care, and more. We believe in working closely with the individual, their family and carers, professionals, and other stakeholders in their life, to deliver high quality support services suited to their unique needs.

Pathways SouthWest Inc
Pathways SouthWest was established 27 years ago and is a unique organisation which partners with its consumers and carers to reduce the impact of mental illness. We promote recovery by providing specialised non-clinical mental health support to people in the community who experience serious and persistent mental illness, as well as carers (those people who provide care and support to consumers). Based in the south-west of WA the consumer program is constantly evolving but always maintains the core values of being relevant, accessible, purposeful and valued. The program adopts a recovery approach that clearly identifies that recovery is more likely to occur where the individual has opportunities to engage and participate in society.  Other facets of the consumer programs include social activities that offer a supported environment where consumers can undertake the gradual process of enhancing their social skills and developing an improved sense of self-worth. Staff also work on an individual basis to support consumers to focus on individual goals and achieve desired outcomes. Recovery Workers form a partnership with consumers utilising a goal orientated care plan utilizing the Mental Health Recovery Star model of intervention.  Collaboratively the Recovery Worker and the consumer will develop a Recovery Plan that works for the consumer and which will be periodically reviewed to measure success and will include the use of outcome measurement processes. The carer program support includes individual psycho-educational counselling and group activities which include the Wellways suite of courses which are structured peer facilitated psycho-educational courses developed to build resilience through knowledgeable peer support. Pathways SouthWest is a NDIS registered provider. Pathways SouthWest provides benevolent landlord support services through the WA Independent Living Program.    

Primary & Community Care Services Ltd
Primary & Community Care Services (PCCS) is a local health organisation working to make it easier for people to access the health and community services they need. We provide access to community-based services that include nursing, occupational therapy, physiotherapy, social work, care coordination and psychological support services.  Working in partnership with funders including State and Federal Governments, insurance providers and other bodies, PCCS develops and delivers meaningful health programs and services for local communities.  Our specialist care and coordination services are targeted toward people living with: complex health issues, social and welfare needs, long term mental health issues, psychosocial disability and others with complex needs.

Ruah Community Services
Ruah Community Services: Working in partnership, Ruah Community Services aim to empower and inspire their clients to achieve their personal aspirations. Vision – Flourishing communities through active participation and wellbeing of people with complex needs. Mission – Empowering vulnerable and disadvantaged people to create meaningful change in their lives through provision of quality support services. Values – Respect, Grassroots, Partnerships, Integrity, Creativity.

Star Health Group
Star Health is a leading not-for-profit provider of primary health and community services in the inner south of Melbourne and surrounds. Operating from a social model of health, we provide a comprehensive range of holistic, wrap-around services including mental health, GP, dental, allied health, alcohol and other drugs, Indigenous health, aged care, homelessness and family violence. In working towards our vision of Health and well-being for all, Star Health has a strong focus on social justice, and specialist expertise in engaging, supporting and advocating for our most vulnerable community members. We engage in community building and health promotion activities to build the health and well-being of our local communities.

Tandem is the trusted voice of family and friends in mental health in Victoria.  We are the Victorian peak body representing organisations and individuals advocating for family and friends of people living with mental illness.

TeamHEALTH is a for purpose organisation that supports people dealing with mental health concerns or mental illness. We seek to create community capacity for good mental health so that all people may lead a full and valued life.  

Tully Support Centre
The Tully Support Centre (TSC) is a recognised provider of high quality, accessible and inclusive support services, that acknowledges the uniqueness of their region and of the discrete communities that make up that region. The TSC undertake a social justice model of service delivery upholding the principles of collaboration, empowerment, equity, accessibility, valuing diversity and human rights. The TSC asserts that respectful, positive, targeted and individualised engagement is the foundation of good practice that promotes the safety, wellbeing and improved outcomes for individuals and families within the Cassowary Coast. The TSC also undertakes and supports a number of community development activities within the community.

Victorian Mental Illness Council VMIAC
The Victorian Mental Illness Awareness Council (VMIAC) is the peak Victorian non-government organisation for people with lived experience of mental health or emotional issues. VMIAC works to educate the community about mental illness from a consumer perspective, and provide information and support for mental health consumers around the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS). They also provide advocacy services to assist consumers and improve the mental health system. VMIAC’s vision is to create a world where all mental health consumers stand proud, live a life with choices honoured, rights upheld and these principles embedded in all aspects of society.

WayAhead – Mental Health Association NSW 
WayAhead We work towards better mental health and wellbeing through:  The co-ordination of mental health promotion activities such as Mental Health Month NSW, WayAhead Workplaces and Perinatal Depression and Anxiety Awareness Week Free anxiety support groups throughout NSW The provision of mental health information – the WayAhead Directory, mental health factsheets Education seminars such as or Understanding Anxiety Forums and Professional Development Workshops – for people living with a mental health condition, the public and health care professionals Small Steps workshops for parents and school teachers to raise awareness and improve recognition of anxiety disorders in children.

Wellways Australia
Wellways Australia is a provider with 40 years’ experience, we specialise in mental health, disability support and carer services. We dedicate resources to advocacy, to ensure systems are responsible and equitable, and society is inclusive. To us recovery means all Australians lead active and fulfilling lives in their community.  We work with individuals, families and the community to help them imagine and achieve better lives. We provide a wide range of services and assistance for people with mental health issues, disabilities and those requiring community care, as well as carers as a Carer Gateway regional delivery partner throughout Queensland and the New South Wales regions of South West Sydney and Nepean Blue Mountains.

Wise Employment Ltd
WISE are an Australian not-for-profit employment services provider with offices in New South Wales, Victoria, Queensland, Tasmania, South Australia and the Northern Territory. Since 1992 we have been connecting and empowering job seekers and employers because we believe our community benefits when everyone is supported to achieve their potential. Their Vision is: Inspire, transform and enable people to realise their potential. Their Mission is: Empowering people to enrich the community.

Women’s Information, Support and Housing in the North
Since 2002, Women’s Information, Support and Housing in the North (WISHIN) has been helping women in Melbourne’s north to create the life they deserve. WISHIN provide specialist support across two service systems: Homelessness and Family Violence. They support those experiencing, or at risk of experiencing, homelessness. Many of the women they work with experience housing crises due to family violence. They work with a Trauma Informed Practice to provide a holistic wrap around support which acknowledges the complexity of issues women and children face in their lives. Run by women, for women, WISHIN provides a safe, compassionate service for overcoming trauma and getting lives back on track.

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Universities guilty of ‘perpetuating institutional racism’, report says

New report calls on senior higher education staff to undergo training ‘to improve racial literacy as part of a sector-wide crackdown’

Tackling racial harassment in higher education sheds light on the ongoing racial discrimination people face at university, stating unis are guilty of ‘perpetuating institutional racism’ on campus and calling on leaders in the higher education sector alongside students and staff to spot and stand up to racism.

Universities UK (UUK), the body that represents the higher education sector in the UK, has warned that ‘a quarter of black, Asian and minority ethnic students and a third of BAME staff have faced harassment on campus.’

UUK found that a third of BAME staff has experienced racist insults, which were part of repeat abuse. As a result of campus racism one in 20 students had given up their studies and three times as many staff left their posts.

The report highlights the essential need for additional education on campus, in the improvement in awareness of prejudice, white privilege and microaggression at university, alongside increasing diversity within staff, particularly at senior level. Data revealed last year highlighted that there were fewer than 150 Black professors teaching at university.

In 2019, an investigation by the Equality and Human Rights Commission discovered that universities were letting down many students on campus by failing to address thousands of racist incidents. These included shocking incidents of physical assaults against BAME students, ostracism and harassment.

The latest report revealed that some students find it hard to report racism at university, with one respondent quoted, “I came to the UK and I met racism. I met English racism, which is very polite . . . so it’s difficult to accuse people and progress to a complaint.”

Chairman of the UUK advisory group, vice-chancellor and professor at the University of East Anglia said that universities are guilty of failing BAME staff and students.

“Too often black, Asian and minority ethnic students and staff have been failed. While they may have heard positive words, they have seen little action. That needs to change now.”

A spokeswoman for the National Union of Students stated that although the report may be one step in the right direction, there is still a long way to go. “Although we welcome this report, it makes for a sobering read and is a stark reminder of the racism that students and staff face on a daily basis in higher education.

“Changing a university culture that enables racial harassment to take place will not be achieved merely by an EDI project or by recruiting black people into senior positions, it requires us to go to the root of the problem: systemic racism.”

New guidance

New training programmes are encouraged by UUK, urging the higher education leaders to encourage allyship among white staff and students, and focus on training to identify and stamp out microaggressions. Collective microaggressions – commonplace, daily verbal indignities – have been found to have severe negative impact on affected students.

Latest recommendations from UUK that university leaders can implement immediately include:

  • Publicly commit priority status to tackling racial harassment.
  • Engage directly with students and staff with lived experience of racial harassment.
  • Review current policies and procedures and develop new institution-wide strategies for tackling racial harassment.
  • Improve awareness and understanding of racism, racial harassment, white privilege and microagressions among all staff and students, including through anti-racist training.
  • Ensure expected behaviours for online behaviour are clearly communicated to students and staff, as well as sanctions for breaches.
  • Develop and introduce reporting systems for incidents of racial harassment
  • Collect data on reports of incidents and share regularly with senior staff and governing bodies.

Existing initiatives are in place to tackle racism on campus, but findings show that there was an unconscious bias that such trainings were perceived as ‘tick-box exercises’, which leaves a gaping disparity in anti-racist training and other staff and student training initiatives.

President of Universities UK, Professor Julia Buckingham concluded that university leaders ‘have a duty of care.’ “Every racist incident is one too many and all university students and staff are entitled to a positive, safe and enjoyable experience free from racial harassment.”

Support resources

If you have experienced racism in any form, there are a lot of support services available for you to discuss your experiences, and find help, in safe, confidential spaces.

Let’s all work together to build a better 2021.

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Be Kind & to Yourself!

Mental Health Humor and psychological disorder humor and cartoons by Chato Stewart

Chato Stewart

Chato Stewart has a mission, to draw and use humor as a positive tool to live, to cope with the debilitating effects symptoms of mental illness.
Chato Stewart is a Mental Health Hero and Advocate. Recovery Peer Specialist board-certified in Florida. Chato is the artist behind the cartoons series Mental Health Humor, Over-Medicated, and The Family Stew – seen here in his blog posts. The cartoons are drawn from his personal experience of living with bipolar disorder (and other labels).

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APA Reference

Stewart, C. (2020). A Bunch of Brains (8): Be Kind & to Yourself!. Psych Central.
Retrieved on November 24, 2020, from


Last updated: 31 Aug 2020
Statement of review: Psych Central does not review
the content that appears in our blog network ( prior to publication. All opinions
expressed herein are exclusively those of the author alone, and do not reflect the views of
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Published on All rights reserved.


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NIMH » The NIMH Director’s Innovation Speaker Series: Pursuing an Innovation Agenda: A New Healthcare Architecture


Location: Virtual

Sponsored by:

NIMH Division of Extramural Affairs

On December 15, Barak Richman, Ph.D., J.D., the Edgar P. and Elizabeth C. Bartlett Professor of Law and Business Administration at Duke University School of Law, will be the guest speaker in the NIMH Director’s Innovation Speaker Series, which focuses on innovation, invention, and scientific discovery.

In this talk, Dr. Richman will explore how the healthcare sector can transform into a more affordable and sustainable part of the American economy. Central to any meaningful healthcare reform is a reorganization of healthcare delivery and pursuing a new architecture for the health sector. Necessary elements will include reorienting the sector to digital technologies, abandoning costly infrastructures, reconceptualizing the role of traditional personnel and practices, and pursuing legal reforms that will emphasize promoting health, not purchasing healthcare.

Dr. Richman’s primary research interests include the economics of contracting, new institutional economics, antitrust, and healthcare policy. His work has appeared in the Columbia Law Review, the University of Pennsylvania Law Review, Law and Social Inquiry, the New England Journal of Medicine, the Journal of the American Medical Association, and Health Affairs. In 2006, he co-edited with Clark Havighurst, a symposium volume of Law and Contemporary Problems entitled, “Who Pays? Who Benefits? Distributional Issues in Health Care,” and in 2017, Harvard University Press published his book, Stateless Commerce.


NIMH established the Director’s Innovation Speaker Series to encourage broad, interdisciplinary thinking in the development of scientific initiatives and programs, and to press for theoretical leaps in science over the continuation of incremental thinking. Innovation speakers are encouraged to describe their work from the perspective of breaking through existing boundaries and developing successful new ideas, as well as working outside their initial area of expertise in ways that have pushed their fields forward. We encourage discussions of the meaning of innovation, creativity, breakthroughs, and paradigm-shifting.


Zoom Registration required:

More Information

NIMH will provide sign language interpreters. Individuals with disabilities who need reasonable accommodations to participate in this program should contact the Federal Relay at 1-800-877-8339. Submit general questions to the NIMH Director’s Innovation Speaker Series mailbox.

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Memories create ‘fingerprints’ that reveal how the brain is organized — ScienceDaily

While the broad architecture and organization of the human brain is universal, new research shows how the differences between how people reimagine common scenarios can be observed in brain activity and quantified. These unique neurological signatures could ultimately be used to understand, study, and even improve treatment of disorders such as Alzheimer’s disease.

“When people imagine similar types of events, each person does it differently because they have different experiences,” said Feng (Vankee) Lin, Ph.D., R.N. “Our research demonstrates that we can decode the complex information in the human brain related to everyday life and identify neural ‘fingerprints’ that are unique to each individual’s remembered experience.” Lin is an associate professor in the University of Rochester Del Monte Institute for Neuroscience and co-author of the study which appears in the journal Nature Communications.

In the study, researchers asked 26 participants to recall common scenarios, such as driving, attending a wedding, or eating out at a restaurant. The scenarios were broad enough so that each participant would reimagine them differently. For example, when researchers asked volunteers to vividly remember and describe an occasion involving dancing, one person might recall watching their daughter participating in a dance recital, while another may imaging themselves dancing at a Bar Mitzvah.

The participant’s verbal descriptions were mapped to a computational linguistic model that approximates the meaning of the words and creates numerical representation of the context of the description. They were also asked to rate aspects of the remembered experience, such as how strongly it was associated with sound, color, movement, and different emotions.

The study volunteers were then placed in a functional MRI (fMRI) and asked to reimagine the experience while researchers measured which areas of the brain were activated. Using the fMRI data and the subject’s verbal descriptions and ratings, researchers were able to isolate brain activity patterns associated with that individual’s experiences. For instance, if the participant imagined driving through a red light in the scenario, areas of the brain associated with recalling motion and color would be activated. Using this data, the researchers built a functional model of each participant’s brain, essentially creating a unique signature of their neurological activity.

The researchers were able to identify several areas of the brain that served as hubs for processing information across brain networks that contribute to recalling information about people, objects, places, emotions, and sensations. The team was also able to observe how activation patterns within these networks differed on an individual level depending upon the details of each person’s recollections and imagination.

“One of the goals of cognitive science is to understand how memories are represented and manipulated by the human brain,” said Andrew Anderson, Ph.D., with the Del Monte Institute for Neuroscience and co-author of the study. “This study shows that fMRI can measure brain activity with sufficient signal to identify meaningful interpersonal differences in the neural representation of complex imagined events that reflect each individual’s unique experience.”

In addition to expanding our understanding of how the brain is networked, the authors point out that many of the key regions they identified tend to decline in function as we age and are vulnerable to the degeneration that occurs in disease like Alzheimer’s. The findings could lead to new ways to diagnose and study disorders associated with irregular memory deficits, including dementia, schizophrenia, and depression, and perhaps even personalize treatments and predict which therapies will be more effective.

The study was funded with support from the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences of the National Institutes of Health and the URMC Clinical the Translational Science Institute.

Story Source:

Materials provided by University of Rochester Medical Center. Original written by Mark Michaud. Note: Content may be edited for style and length.

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New Brain Scan Study Could Help Find Best Therapy for OCD

New research has found key differences in the brains of patients with obsessive-compulsive disorder who respond to one form of therapy over another.

The findings could improve the odds that people with OCD will receive a therapy that really works for them, something that eludes more than a third of those who currently get OCD treatment, according to researchers at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor.

The study suggests the possibility of predicting which of two types of therapy will help teens and adults with OCD: one that exposes them to the specific subject of their obsessive thoughts and compulsive behaviors, or one that focuses on general stress reduction and a problem-solving approach.

While the researchers caution that it’s too early for their work to be used by patients and mental health therapists, they note they are conducting further studies that will test the framework and see if it also applies to children with OCD or obsessive tendencies.

Published in the American Journal of Psychiatry, the new study examines advanced brain scans of 87 teens and adults with moderate to severe OCD who were randomly assigned to one of the two types of therapy for 12 weeks.

The researchers found that, in general, both types of therapy reduced the patients’ symptoms.

They also found that the approach known as exposure therapy, a form of cognitive behavioral therapy or CBT, was more effective and reduced symptoms more as time went on, compared with stress-management therapy or SMT.

But when the researchers looked back at the brain scans taken before the patients began therapy, and linked them to individual treatment response, they said they found striking patterns.

The brain scans were taken while patients performed a simple cognitive task and responded to a small monetary reward if they did the task correctly.

Those who started out with more activation in brain circuits for processing cognitive demands and reward during the tests were more likely to respond to CBT. But those who started out with less activation in those same areas during the same tests were more likely to respond well to SMT, the findings suggest.

“We found that the more OCD-specific form of therapy, the one based on exposure to the focus of obsession and compulsion, was better for relieving symptoms, which in itself is a valuable finding from this head-to-head randomized comparison of two treatment options,” said Stephan Taylor, M.D., the study’s senior author and a professor of psychiatry at Michigan Medicine, U-M’s academic medical center.

“But when we looked at the brain to see what was behind that response, we found that the more strength patients had in certain brain areas were linked to a greater chance of responding to exposure-based CBT.”

The brain regions and circuits that had the strongest links to treatment have already been identified as important to OCD and have even been targets for treatment with an emerging therapy called transcranial magnetic stimulation, the researchers noted.

Specifically, stronger activity in the circuit called the cingulo-opercular network during the cognitive task, and stronger activity in the orbitostriato-thalamic network when the reward was at stake, was associated with better response to exposure-based CBT.

Lower activity in both regions was associated with better response to the stress-reduction SMT.

The effects didn’t vary across age groups, the researchers added.

“These findings speak to a mechanism for therapy’s effects, because the brain regions associated with those effects overlap substantially with those implicated previously in this disorder,” said Luke Norman, Ph.D., who led the work as a U-M neuroscience postdoctoral fellow. “This suggests we need to draw upon the most-affected networks during therapy itself, but further research is needed to confirm.”

The brain scans were done while patients underwent a test that required them to pick the correct letter out of a display, and offered a potential monetary reward if they performed the task correctly. This measured both their ability to exert control over their cognitive processes in picking out the right letter, and the extent to which the promise of a reward motivated them, the researchers explained.

One of the areas most linked to CBT treatment response was the rostral anterior cingulate cortex (rACC). Past research has already linked it to OCD and treatment response, and it’s thought to play a key role in self-regulation of response to OCD triggers, the researchers said. Previously, the University of Michigan team had shown that people with OCD tend to have reduced activation in the rACC when asked to perform tasks that involve cognitive control.

Among those who responded best to CBT, the researchers saw stronger pre-treatment activation in areas of the brain associated with learning how to extinguish fear-based responses to something that has caused fear in the past.

Because exposure therapy for OCD involves facing the thing or situation that provokes obsessive and fearful responses, having a stronger ability to be motivated by rewards might help someone stick with therapy despite having to face their triggers, the researchers suggested.

The findings suggest a path to personalizing the choice of therapy not by doing brain scans on everyone with OCD — which would be impractical, according to the researchers— but by using everyday tests that measure the kinds of characteristics that might predict better success with one therapy or the other.

Easily administered behavioral tests could be developed to help therapists recommend CBT to those who have the most cognitive control and reward responsiveness. Likewise, they could suggest SMT to those who would benefit most from being taught to relax and use problem-solving techniques to improve their response to stressors, said Kate Fitzgerald, M.D., a pediatric OCD specialist at Michigan Medicine. Fitzgerald is co-senior author of the paper and leads multiple studies of OCD therapy for children and adolescents.

Computer-based brain-training exercises that can strengthen these tendencies, and rewards for exposing yourself to the thing or action that triggers OCD symptoms, may hold the potential to improve therapy response, she said.

“This kind of research may help inform efforts to do cognitive control training and ramp up the circuits that help patients overcome conflict between obsessive fears and insight that these fears don’t make sense so that patients can dismiss the fear as improbable, rather than trying to make it go away with compulsive behaviors,” she said.

“Our research shows that different brains respond to different treatments, and if we can build on this knowledge we could move toward a more precision-medicine approach for OCD.”

In children and teens, whose brains are still maturing, there’s an especially good chance of helping them improve their brains’ control functions, she said.

Fitzgerald and her research team are recruiting young people with diagnosed OCD, and OCD-like tendencies, for a clinical trial that provides CBT and includes brain scanning before and after therapy.

Since OCD symptoms typically start in the tween years, though diagnosis may not occur until the teen or young adult years, it’s important to study children with sub-clinical symptoms, she noted.

Though the study involves in-person interactions for the brain scans, the CBT exposure therapy is done through video chat. In fact, Fitzgerald says, this can make it easier for children and teens to confront the item or situation that triggers their OCD-like impulses, because these are often found in the home.

“We need families and patients to engage with researchers in studies like these,” she said. “Only through research can we understand what works best for different groups of patients. And perhaps by doing so we can expand the availability of the most evidence-based OCD therapies, including by engaging psychologists and clinical social workers in leading treatment programs, in addition to psychiatrists at specialized centers.”

Source: Michigan Medicine — University of Michigan

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Editors’ Picks for July 2020, Including Your New Favorite Shirt

As they say, it’s the little things that make life worthwhile. This has never been more true. We’re finding that during a mellower summer, the joy that a great supplement or a new favorite tee brings to our lives is magnified. Have a little fun with our new warm-weather delights. Training Camp Collection Baseball Shirt

Recommended by Nick Collias, executive editor

Understated T-shirt designs are the overwhelming trend in fitness right now. And as someone who grew up in the time when so-called adults wore brightly patterned Zubaz pants with Big Johnson tees to my local rec center gym, I welcome the change.’s Training Camp shirts are all eye-catching in a subtle, “that looks good on you” kind of way. Just as important, they’re also unbelievably light and comfortable. Of all the pieces in the collection, I favor this one. I love a good baseball tee (that definitely hasn’t changed since childhood), and the minimal, mysterious logo looks cool. This is not your older brother’s shirt.

Pro-Tec Athletics Ice Up Ice Massager

Recommended by Heather Eastman, senior content editor

Pro-Tec Athletics Ice Up Ice Massager

Summer is here and for a lot of us that means longer days, more activities, and greater risk of reactivating old injuries. If you’ve got a knee that acts up or a shoulder that won’t stop hurting, you know that the best relief on hot, hazy days is a refreshing ice massage. The Pro-Tec Athletics Ice Up Ice Massager is the perfect way to freeze pain in its tracks and help reduce exercise-related inflammation. Simply fill with water and freeze.

The frozen carrying cooler keeps your ice massager frozen for up to 12 hours, perfect for a day trip up to the lake for wakeboarding or relaxing at home after a grueling mountain hike. Just remove the cap from the ice massager and press the plunger to push up as much ice as you need for a relaxing ice massage.

Signature L-Carnitine

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Signature L-Carnitine

While trying new flavors and formulas of things like protein powder, pre-workout, and BCAAs keeps things interesting, some supplements become a permanent fixture in your stack. One of these for me is Signature L-Carnitine.

If you’re not familiar with L-carnitine, it’s a supplement that supports energy metabolism by transporting long-chain fatty acids into mitochondria to be oxidized for energy production. This helps your body burn fats as fuel, making L-carnitine a great product for any athlete looking to maximize their metabolic potential. Bonus: It’s only 12 cents a serving, so you get a great-quality product at a great value.

Olympus Lyfestyle EAA Drip EAAs & BCAAs

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Olympus Lyfestyle EAA Drip

You can get all the amino acids you need from a plant-based diet if you include a broad mix of whole-plant foods, but for some of us that’s a big if. While I do try to vary my diet, I don’t track my nutrient intake, so I like to take an EAA or BCAA supplement to make sure I’m covered. This is one of the few I’ve found that is vegan and tastes awesome.

EAA Drip is quickly becoming my go-to summer supplement. The extra-juicy Green Apple Candy flavor makes it easier and more fun to stay hydrated—I could chug this all day long. And as a design enthusiast, I love the cute, cartoony packaging. Maybe that’s not as important as what’s in it, but smiling is good for you, according to science.[1]

  1. Abel, E. L., & Kruger, M. L. (2010). Smile intensity in photographs predicts longevity. Psychological Science, 21(4), 542-544.

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Trauma in the Womb

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Samuel López De Victoria, Ph.D.

Samuel Lopez De Victoria, Ph.D. is a psychotherapist in private practice. He has taught as a psychology professor at the Miami Dade College in Miami, FL., the University of the Rockies in Colorado Springs, CO, and currently for the Ashford University in Clinton, IA. He can be contacted through his web site at

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APA Reference

López De Victoria, S. (2020). Trauma in the Womb. Psych Central.
Retrieved on November 20, 2020, from

Scientifically Reviewed

Last updated: 20 Nov 2020 (Originally: 20 Nov 2020)

Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 20 Nov 2020
Published on Psych All rights reserved.


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Productivity Commission Inquiry report a crucial next step for mental health reform in Australia

Mental Health Australia has today welcomed the release of the Final Report from the Productivity Commission Inquiry into Mental Health, and the interim report from the National Suicide Prevention Adviser, and sees the government response to these reports as a crucial next step in the future of mental health reform and service delivery in Australia.

Mental Health Australia CEO Dr Leanne Beagley said the Final Report from the Productivity Commission is a culmination of nearly two years of extensive consultation and consideration, and could not come at a more important and critical time.

“Today’s release of the Final Report from the Productivity Commission Inquiry into Mental Health is a moment many of us have been waiting for. This is not just a vital report for our mental health sector, but for every Australian,” said Dr Beagley.

“Two years ago many of us talked about how the Productivity Commission Inquiry was a once in a generation opportunity for the mental health of our nation, and now, in a COVID-19 world, that opportunity is even more important than any of us would have ever imagined.”

“Not only has the Productivity Commission paid particular attention to people with lived experience in the development of this report, but the breadth and level of consultation, deep thinking, and planning with the sector at large has been unprecedented.”

“We know our mental health ecosystem has experienced decades of plans and reviews, but this Report is a culmination of all of those, backed with consultation and co-design, and delivered through the lens of how mental health reform and service delivery can support economic participation and enhance productivity and economic growth.”

“We look forward to working with our members and partners to review and respond to the Report in detail. The timing could not be better, and while not everyone will agree with everything that’s in it, I’m sure we can all agree that the need for improved mental health reform and service delivery is now.”


Media Contacts: Lachlan Searle – 0488 076 088


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