In October, TrainSmart Australia hosted a series of mental health presentations in Perth’s CBD to educate the public on a range of mental health issues and help raise awareness of their impacts and how they can be successfully managed. The presentations, which included Responding to Suicide Risk
; Identity and Self-esteem – Positive Psychology Tools
; and My Medicines and Me
, featured prominent speakers in their respective fields of mental health.
Responding to suicide risk – Increase the safety of individuals at risk of suicide
This session was presented by Katherine Houareau – a lived experience educator on suicide, raising community awareness about suicide prevention, intervention and postvention. A mental health support worker within Australia’s National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) and a community presenter for Australia’s renowned Black Dog Institute, Katherine is also co-host of Strong Minds
on Noongar Radio 100.9FM – a radio show discussing mental health and wellbeing broadcast across Australia and overseas. During the presentation, Katherine discussed ways to identify and increase the safety of individuals at risk of suicide. TrainSmart Australia students who attended the presentation commented on Katherine’s engaging and informative session. CHC43315 Certificate IV in Mental Health
student Peter commented: “That seminar was a beauty. Kat is someone I’d like to hear more from.”
Identity and Self-esteem – Positive Psychology Tools: A mental wellbeing and health promotion toolkit
This session was presented by Vidhu Sharma – Trainer and Assessor with the Health and Community Services Faculty of TrainSmart Australia. With a degree in Ayurvedic Medicine and Surgery and as the Western Australian State Representative for the Australasian Association of Ayurveda, Vidhu conducts informative workshops and presents on various health and wellbeing topics both across Australia and internationally. During the session, Vidhu highlighted how women see themselves in society as well as how society portrays them, providing insightful information and inspiration to those in attendance. An attendee commented: “This was a great event – the students enjoyed interacting with the speaker. It was a great opportunity to have a speaker who is also a trainer for TrainSmart who is inspirational to women and men who attended this event.”
My Medicines and Me
Presented by Renai Searle – My Medicines and Me Project Coordinator at Consumers of Mental Health WA (CoMHWA) – this presentation was aimed at empowering people to effectively manage their mental health medications. With a strong background in consumer-focused, peer-led and peer-based advocacy and support services, Renai has lived experience of mental health issues which she uses to help raise awareness and break the stigma around mental health issues. CoMHWA’s My Medicines and Me project
aims to build the skills, confidence and knowledge of people to effectively manage their mental health medications. An attendee at the presentation commented: “This was a great opportunity to have a not-for-profit consumer peak body (CoMHWA) speak about My Medicines and Me. Those who attended gained valuable knowledge about prescribed medications for carers, families and professionals.” The presentation was funded by Lotterywest and organised in collaboration with CoMHWA.