Poverty and mental health

Health professionals often work with the individual, treating mental health challenges such as depression as a ‘brain illness’ which has emerged as a result of disturbed chemistry within the body. As therapists and counsellors we often work with depression as a ‘mind illness’; working with the individual’s thoughts and stories about their situation and themselves,…

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Child abuse and neglect in Australia 

Recent research conducted by the University of South Australia’s Centre for Child Protection shows the staggeringly high number of children being reported to child protection authorities in Australia, and of those being reported 90 per cent have multiple reports being made about “incredibly concerning” abuse and neglect. Professor Arney said authorities needed to respond to…

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Why I love working in community mental health

I’ve been musing lately on my experiences in running art therapy programs for community mental health providers. Why creating welcoming spaces for people in crisis or experiencing extreme states matters: Mental health sufferers face both stigma and other challenges to joining in mainstream activities. Low energy, low mood, feeling anxious, fidgety, being prone to angry outbursts,…

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Taking social isolation seriously

Recent research supports the idea that feeling socially isolated can impact on our physical as well as mental health (1). One of the reasons I love running groups is that a facilitated space can help people connect with others quite deeply in a way that feels safe. Quite simply, connecting with others feels good and…

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