Focusing On Mental Health

Focusing On Mental Health

Victoria Minister for Mental Health Mary Wooldridge

Minister Wooldridge Launches Mental Health Week

Victor P Taffa

Mental Health Week provides an opportunity to focus on how the community can to be more inclusive of people with a mental illness, Mental Health Minister Mary Wooldridge said today.

“This week we can all focus on helping to reduce the stigma surrounding people with mental Illness.” Ms. Wooldridge said.

“We can all help build better ways to include people with mental illness into our community.”

The Victorian Coalition Government committed more than $1 Billion to mental health in the 2011-12 Budget and is currently reviewing the Mental Health Act.

Ms. Wooldridge also used the official opening of Mental Health Week to launch a booklet that will help remove the stigma and mystery surrounding mental illness.

Speaking Our Minds, a guide to how we use our stories gives an overview of storytelling from the perspective of people diagnosed with a mental illness.

“It’s important for people diagnosed with mental illness to be able to tell and share their story.” Ms. Wooldridge said.

“These stories contain insight, they offer solutions, and ultimately lead to change. I can’t stress enough how important it is for every one of us to actively listen.”

Ms. Wooldridge praised the efforts of the Mental Health Foundation, particularly Professor Graham Burrows and Ms. Meghan McQueenie, for starting Mental Health Week 26 years ago and also for pioneering what is now World Mental Health Day on 10 October.

More than 150 specific Mental Health Week events will be held around Victoria.