Community Mental Health Forum at Warialda

February 27, 2008

One in five Australian’s will experience mental illness during their lifetime. Regardless of these high statistics mental illness continues to be a hidden disease in our society plagued by stigma and a lack of accurate information.

Gwydir Insight Mental Health Support Group in collaboration with The Rotary Club of Warialda, Australian Rotary Health and the Barwon Division of General practice have joined together to bring to the general public a Community Mental Health Forum on March 15 between 9am and 2pm at the Warialda Memorial Hall in attempt to address these issues.

This forum will give the general community an excellent opportunity to actively participate and become more informed about mental illnesses, mental illness in the community, and what it is like to live with a mental illness. The major issue of medications and up-to-date information on them will be one focus of the forum.

Dr Timothy Chen is one of the keynote speakers for the event bringing to the forum a wealth of experience and research in Mental illness medications and their side effects. As well as speaking at the forum on Saturday March 15, Dr Chen will be speaking to a group of GPs in Moree on Friday 14.

Professor Chris Tennant who is no stranger to the bush having spent 20 years delivering psychiatric services to isolated communities will also be presenting at the forum. As well as speaking on stress, depression and mental illness in general, Professor Tennant will be addressing adolescent mental health including early diagnosis and treatment, post traumatic stress and the issue of self-harming behaviours.

Robert Young knows what it is like to live daily with Schizophrenia. Having being diagnosed 20 years ago at the young age of 18 he speaks openly about the lived experience of mental illness.

There will be an open question and answer forum where mental illness carer Joan Wakeford will join the team to openly discuss any questions that may arise.

Everyone is invited to attend this Community Forum. Admission is free but please book in by calling 67291392. Morning tea and lunch will be provided to those who have registered.

Compliments of The Bingara Advocate