As we approach the culmination of another impactful year, I want to take a moment to express my sincere gratitude for your steadfast support and collaboration with Mental Health Coordinating Council during 2023.
As the year draws to a close and we take stock of our joint endeavours, I have been reflecting back on the milestones and initiatives that have defined this year. Here is my inside look at some of the activities, events and initiatives that have marked the past 12 months.
The past year has been a busy one for us. At a glance, we have submitted more than 20 submissions and policy responses, sent over 100 sector updates, created 18 sector resources and publications, supported over 1,000 students enrolled in our training courses, grown our social followers by over 40% and welcomed more than 1,000 people to our online and in-person events.
In 2023 we celebrated 40 years of supporting community-managed mental health organisations. It was terrific to celebrate the past four decades with so many of you at our special anniversary event. We look forward to the next 40 years and beyond, championing a strong community mental health sector.
Recently our Director of Policy & Systems Reform Corinne Henderson and I addressed the NSW Parliament Inquiry into equity, accessibility and appropriate delivery of outpatient and community mental health care. Our presentation highlighted crucial aspects that demand attention, including workforce and extended funding cycles. We’re pleased to be part of this vital conversation and are eager to see the outcomes of this wide-ranging inquiry.
Many of you joined us recently for the launch of our 2023 Mental Health Workforce Profile: Community Managed Organisations. The report is the only study examining the significant trends and pivotal influences shaping our workforce in NSW. I commend the report to you as an important read on the current workforce situation and where we are headed into the future.
For a status update on significant public projects, reviews and gap analyses impacting mental health services in NSW, we developed a hub to streamline available information. We want to make it as easy as possible for our members to stay up to date on projects that have the potential to shape the future of the sector.
Bringing the sector together is one of our key priorities, ensuring we can together remain a strong voice for people with lived experience. Over a range of events this year we brought leaders from the sector together to discuss shared challenges. We also held four successful Meet your Neighbour events for frontline mental health workers and ran three Advocate and Allies sector development webinars. We look forward to welcoming you to our events next year.
To support and strengthen members to deliver trauma-informed services, during Mental Health Month we proudly launched a new guide on the use of trauma-informed language. The guide is available for free and is derived from our popular and well-recognised Recovery Oriented Language Guide.
This year we released our first video showcasing the work of the community-managed mental health sector. I know many of you will have seen it by now, but I believe it is worth rewatching as a testament to the profound work you all do, and as a reminder of the value of community-managed organisations.
CMHDARN released the Co-Design Kickstarter – this valuable guide was developed in response to a need for a resource to support meaningful co-design research in the mental health and alcohol and other drugs sectors. It has already received excellent reviews in the sector.
I could not send this wrap-up without noting the passing of the torch! It was only in June that I was humbled and delighted to join MHCC as CEO to work with you and those with lived experience of mental health conditions on reform and service improvements. I am fuelled by a desire to make a difference and passionate about sustainably empowering individuals to thrive and flourish. I also look forward to bringing a voice to the National agenda in my capacity as a Board Director for Mental Health Australia.
I take the opportunity to thank Carmel Tebbutt for her tenure and commitment to MHCC and the sector more broadly.
Carmel’s dedication has been instrumental in our collective efforts to improve the lives of people facing mental health challenges across our communities this year. I would like to take this opportunity to publicly thank the Mental Health Coordinating Council Team for their perseverance and dedication throughout 2023.
I want to also thank our members and supporters for your unwavering support as a crucial ally of Mental Health Coordinating Council. I am eager to continue our collaboration in the coming year as we work together to improve the lives of people with lived experience of mental health conditions.
As we conclude this year, I extend heartfelt wishes for joy and well-being during the holiday season and throughout the upcoming New Year.
May happiness and good health accompany you on your journey.
Dr Evelyne Tadros
Chief Executive Officer
Mental Health Coordinating Council