The Woodcock Lecture, taking place for the first time during National Mental Health Week (8–14 October), is one of the most anticipated events on the annual mental health calendar.
This year’s lecture, themed ‘Sharing stories, changing lives’, will focus on the power of sharing personal stories to create hope and possibility for individuals, families and communities. It is about how storytelling can change hearts and minds.
Uncle Jack Charles, as he is widely known, is a member of Australia’s stolen generation. Removed from his mother as a baby, he knew nothing of his Indigenous heritage as a child.
Despite his own struggles in life, Uncle Jack co-founded Australia’s first Indigenous theatre group, Nindethana, in 1971 and forged an illustrious career as both a theatre and film actor. A respected Aboriginal elder, activist and entertainer, Uncle Jack is considered a national treasure. He will bring his remarkable storytelling talents to this year’s Woodcock Lecture, delving into his own life story and experiences to illustrate how positive change can be achieved in our communities.
Following the lecture, Uncle Jack will join a discussion panel of mental health experts including Neil Thomas, Associate Professor of Psychology, Swinburne University of Technology – Centre for Mental Health; Laura Collister, Wellways Director of Mental Health Services, Research and Development, and Ben Matthews, Wellways Peer Services Manager.
The Bruce Woodcock Memorial Lecture is supported by Frank and Patricia Woodcock in memory of their son. Past guest speakers have included national and international leaders in mental health recovery, housing and community inclusion.
Reserve your place for the 19th Annual Bruce Woodcock Memorial Lecture.