Organisations and community groups throughout the Murrumbidgee region of New South Wales now have access to mental health and suicide prevention resources to help them build awareness, community capacity and reduce stigma.

The resources webpage, launched by Murrumbidgee Primary Health Network (MPHN), is the result of collaboration between a range of organisations including Wellways, Murrumbidgee Local Health District, NSW Police, NSW Ambulance, Department of Education and headspace National.

MPHN CEO Melissa Neal said the group met late last year to discuss how to better coordinate and collaborate in the region around mental health support and suicide prevention and after care.

“Together we identified several clear priority areas for our region to support mental health, suicide prevention and postvention including building awareness of what mental health support is available, and building community capacity in terms of equipping communities with the necessary tools to support people experiencing mental ill-health,” Ms Neal said.

“While we are busy progressing much of this work, we have developed this resources webpage to help support our local organisations and community groups foster positive mental health and wellbeing, increase awareness about available supports and to help reduce stigma.

“Our aim is for community leaders, community committees and organisations to use these resources in their networks, as it’s through the promotion of appropriate mental health messages, language and training, we can collectively work towards better mental health outcomes.  

“I would encourage people to have a look at the webpage and see what materials you can use within your networks. If you have something you would like included in this repository of useful resources, please get in touch with us as well. I would also like to thank those who have been involved in providing input and resources for this page,” she said.

Wellways Australia Regional Manager Murrumbidgee Zoe Evans said having a platform to share resources across the community provides an opportunity to support more people in our communities.

“By developing this online resources network and sharing information that’s correct, framed using safe language and images, organisations and community groups can feel confident they’re providing appropriate supports to their networks of people,” Ms Evans said.

“Together we can reach more people who are outside of our organisation networks and make progress in increasing awareness of where to go for help, build the community’s capacity to support people experiencing mental ill-health, and help reduce stigma associated with seeking support.”

The resources page contains information for organisations and communities to use including:

  • Social media tiles promoting help seeking behaviours and relevant contact information
  • Evidence-based mental health training opportunities to upskill the workforce and community to feel able to support someone at risk or experiencing mental health concerns
  • An easy guide for organisations to pledge their commitment to using safe language by signing the National Communications Charter
  • Information about where to get local support

Visit the MPHN website to access the new resources.