Category Archives: Research

Discovery College November courses

Discovery College November courses


Discovery College has some new free courses starting this November.

Anxious Feeling
Attend a course that explores anxiety and anxious feelings. Stories from people who have experienced anxiety will be shared, including stories from people who have cared for someone with anxiety. Some tools and skills on how to manage anxiety will also be explored. Register to attend.

When: 11:00am – 1:00pm 7 November.


What is a diagnosis?
A youth panel will explore different perspectives around a diagnosis, how a diagnosis is made, and the different cultural perspectives around diagnosis. Register to attend.

1:00pm – 3:00pm 14 November.
Where: Online.

Inner South Family and Friends upcoming events for October and November 2022


Alfred Health Carer Services has a wide range of wonderful programmes to celebrate Mental Health Month.

Carers Victoria has a wide range of wonderful programmes to celebrate Carers Week 2022 – Sunday October 16 to Saturday October 22

These are two organisations that we should all join. Each provides support, education, activities and events targeted at us. They advocate for us and need as many members as possible. The more members they have, the greater their power to advocate for us. Membership is free. If you are not yet a member, please join to benefit you, your loved ones and the mental health and carer community.


Monday 10 October 2022, 12.30pm-2pm
– ISFAF Event for World Mental Health Day
There IS such a thing as a free lunch.  Please join ISFAF and AMAH staff at ground level 549 St Kilda Road, Melbourne.

This location has been chosen as we have invited staff of AMAH, most of whom work nearby.
Your contributions – fiscal or nutritional – are welcome, but not required.
For catering purposes, kindly respond to by 5pm Monday 3 October

Tuesday 11 October 2022 , 7.30pm – ISFAF Monthly Meeting
Topic: Psychosis, Psychedelics and Mental Health
Guest Speaker: John Watkins, Psychologist, Educator, Writer and Researcher
John has written many books. He has specifically referred us to read his book ‘Únshrinking Psychosis’, especially chapter 7 which discusses psychedelics. ISFAF library has a copy which is currently on loan. It is a great reference book well worth owning. However if you cannot buy one in time, borrow from your local library and encourage the library to buy extra copies.
Venue: Level Four, Spotless Building, 549 St Kilda Road, Melbourne

Tuesday 8 November 2022ISFAF Monthly Meeting
Do you have lived experience as a carer?
Do you want to be heard?
Is the system not working for you?
Are you frustrated at times?

Let’s Brainstorm with Sue Belmore, Senior Consumer Consultant in Quality Governance AMAH and Jaqueline Rozario, Carer Consultant AMAH to workshop how to make the system work better for us as carers and subsequently for our loved ones. Come armed with your feedback and ideas. All feedback and suggestions welcome.  Violeta Peterson who is returning to AMAH as Director of Lived Experience plans to join us.

Venue: Level Four, Spotless Building, 549 St Kilda Road, Melbourne.  The “Spotless / Downer Building’ is a little to the city side of Wesley College and has white umbrellas in the forecourt. At night there is lots of free parking in the centre lanes of St Kilda Road, but beware, parking during the day is expensive and difficult.  Prahran Station is 1km away and St Kilda Road trams stop at the door. If you are having trouble with transport/seek further information or just need a chat, please phone Judi on 0425 723 746

For all meetings, please come early to enjoy post lockdown return to our customary snack and chat.  For evening meetings, a light supper is available from 7.10pm. Due to security needs, we are required to pay a concierge at the door of the building.  If you come late you may not be able to enter.


Sunday 6 November 2022 – ISFAF Film and Lunch
Exact times to be advised after confirmation of your booking at If you have any questions, please phone Eleni on 0412 018 722 or judi on 0425 723 746.

Film:  Mrs Harris Goes to Paris
(approximately 10am) at Como Palace Cinema, corner Chapel Street and Toorak Road South Yarra.  See it with ISFAF and enjoy a delicious lunch across the road at Blossom Thai immediately after.
Lunch at Blossom Thai (approximately 12.45pm) 37 Cunningham Street, South Yarra.
Bookings are essential by Monday 31 October
Pensioners $12 Non-pensioners $24
Contact Eleni or Judi for bank account details
and send confirmation of payment to
Please include name(s) of individuals attending and
phone number(s) of all attending (preferably mobile).

ABC Your Mental Health August 2022


Jack Heskett, a young person with a beard, sits outside in the bush and smiles towards the camera

After attempting suicide, ER made things worse for Jack

Australia’s national peak body for suicide prevention is calling for alternatives to emergency department care for young people in mental distress.

You can read the article by clicking on the link below:

Tandem Enews Edition 179, 9 August 2022

Dear members and supporters,

The last fortnight has been busy in the mental health reform space, with some exciting new developments taking shape. Here are 6 things you can do this week to help improve the Mental Health and Wellbeing System. 

1. Write to your local Member of the Legislative Council to support the passing of the Mental Health and Wellbeing Bill

Thank you to all Tandem members who wrote to their local MP or used their personal social media channels to support the passing of the Mental Health and Wellbeing Bill. The Bill passed through the Lower House of Parliament last week! It will now be debated by Victoria’s Upper House, the Legislative Council.

Help to maintain the momentum by writing to your local Member of the Legislative Council to encourage their support of the Bill. In case you missed it, our CEO Marie Piu recently joined other leaders to support the passage of the Bill. Read more about this below!

2. Have a say on Victoria’s new suicide prevention and response strategy

You are invited to help shape Victoria’s new suicide prevention and response strategy. The strategy includes several Royal Commission recommendations within it, including ways to provide support to people bereaved by suicide, and to set up a statewide, peer call-back service for families, carers and supporters caring for people experiencing suicidal thoughts and behaviour.

Participate by filling in a survey or by making a public submission via the Engage Victoria website by Monday 29 August.

3. Check out the engagement calendar for the strategy towards elimination of seclusion and restraint – and consider applying to join the External Working Group

There are opportunities to participate in the development of this strategy, outlined in the engagement calendar on the Mental Health and Wellbeing Reform website. Expressions of interest are currently open for an External Working Group, which will develop specific elements of the strategy using co-design principles. Expressions of Interest close 2 September 2022. If you are interested in joining the group, please read the description position and email the completed EOI form to

4. Read the new Service Framework for Local Services

A new Service Framework for Local Adult and Older Adult Mental Health and Wellbeing Services (Local Services) has been developed to guide the operation and service delivery of Local Services across Victoria. Up to 60 new Local Services will provide an easy way to get treatment and support for people aged 26 years and over who are experiencing mental health challenges – including people with alcohol and drug addiction treatment and care needs. Read more about Local Services, and find out the location for the first 27 of these.

5. Spread the word about Our Reform conference and get a ticket if you haven’t already!

This landmark event will be an excellent opportunity to understand what is happening in the mental health reform space, and get stuck into some conversations about making real change.

6. Join our Participation Register

Tandem Participation Register gives participants the opportunity to represent Tandem at events as well as shape the direction of Victoria’s mental health reform. Register to join here

We hope you enjoy taking these small but significant steps to making a real difference!

You can read the complete enews by clicking on the link below:

Tandem enews 9 August 2022

Mental Health Australia CEO Update 29 July 2022

Mental Health News

Mental health and suicide in Australia
Assistant Minister for Mental Health and Suicide Prevention, Emma McBride, says more than 3,000 Australians died by suicide in 2020, according to the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare’s (AIHW) latest report: Suicide and Self-Harm Monitoring. “The report provides insight into the mental health and wellbeing of Australians at the start of the pandemic, with the country seeing an average of around nine deaths by suicide per day. The report indicates that males are three to four times more likely to take their own life than females, while females are more likely to attempt suicide or be hospitalised for intentional self-harm.

Read more

Please click on the link below to access the complete newsletter:

“Talking Point” Free Seminar Series

New directions in neurocognitive assessment, processes and interventions for addictive behaviours, presented by Lara Piccoli and Erynn Christensen.

It is well understood that addiction is associated with neurocognitive deficits, particularly impaired cognitive control, and enhanced drive to engage in the problem behaviour. However, the predictive utility of these neurocognitive processes is yet to be established. Addiction is often characterised by a frequent relapse remit cycle, which may arise from the one-size-fits-all approach to treatment. Targeting the underlying motivations for consuming alcohol may inform more targeted, personalised, and efficacious interventions.

This presentation will discuss addictive behaviours from risk/resilience factors to suggested treatment targets. First, we introduce a novel tool to assess addiction-specific neurocognition and present evidence for the utility (or lack thereof) of neurocognition in predicting addictive behaviours. Then we present a novel virtual reality cue reactivity paradigm administered under stress to assess alcohol craving in individuals with alcohol use disorder.

Lara Piccoli is a second year PhD Candidate (Clinical Neuropsychology) at BrainPark, Monash University. Her research project involves using VR and gamified cognitive tasks to understand the cognitive-affective mechanisms of AUD. She completed her Honours degree at Turning Point in 2020 where she investigated whether alcohol craving mediates the effect of cognitive training on alcohol abstinence. Passionate about the role of cognitive functioning in understanding and treating substance use disorders, Lara’s career goals include continuing her involvement in addiction research, whilst working as a clinical neuropsychologist in the alcohol or other drug sector.

Erynn Christensen (she/her) is a PhD Candidate at Monash University’s BrainPark at the Turner Institute for Brain and Mental Health. After completing her Bachelor of Psychology (Hons) at Monash University, Erynn has since worked on projects involving food choice, cannabis use, sleep and lifestyle interventions. Her PhD research is centred around the neurocognitive predictors of addictive behaviours ranging from drug and alcohol use to gambling, internet use and eating. Her work aims to model phenotypes of addiction, teasing apart the neurocognitive constructs that predispose and exacerbate problematic behaviours.

Date: Wednesday 10th August 2022
Venue: Online
Time: 1:00pm – 2:00pm AEST
Cost: Free – Talking Point is a free seminar series but registrations are essential
Register: click here to register

Alfred Health Speak Project

We are contacting you about being a part of the SPEAK project.

We are trying to improve health services for people with disabilities when they come to the hospital.

The aim of the project is for people with disabilities and their carers to feel safe, understood, and supported while in hospital.

We are looking for carers of people with intellectual disabilities, those with communication support needs and carers of Autistic/neuro-divers persons to join our co-design group.

You will be paid $30 per hour for your time to attend meetings.

Please see some more information about the Speak project below:

Thank you for thinking about being a part of the SPEAK project.

Do you want to improve health services for people with disability when they come to hospital?

Are you:

  • An autistic/neurodiverse person?
  • A person with an intellectual disability?
  • A person with communication support needs?
  • A person supporting someone with one of the above disabilities?
  • A person who works in healthcare?

We are looking for people like you to join our co-design groups.

  • Co-design is a way for people who have a disability to give their ideas on how to make things better.
  • Co-design also has healthcare staff and other people to make services better.

When is this happening?

  • July – December 2022
  • Up to 7 hours a month

Want to find out more?

Call or email one of the SPEAK Project team

Speak to Rusty our Co-design Consultant, or one of our Disability Consumer Consultants – Sam and Tully

Visit the SPEAK Project web page:

Carers Vic Australia 2022 National Carer Survey

National Carer Survey

The 2022 National Carer Survey is now open! The survey is a platform for family and friend carers across Australia to share their opinions and experiences, which will assist Carers Victoria and our partners to advocate for greater carer recognition and support.

Complete the 2022 National Carer Survey online, or order a paper copy by phoning 02 9280 4744.

Complete the survey



Mind Medicine Australia

Please Take 5 Minutes To Show Your Support For Rescheduling the Medicinal Use of Psilocybin and MDMA as Part of Psychotherapy for The Treatment of Mental Illness

Australians Need Your Help!

The TGA’s Public Submissions Period is Now Open

The TGA has announced the public consultation period is now open in relation to Mind Medicine Australia’s applications to amend the Poisons Standard in relation the medical use of psilocybin and MDMA as part of therapy for key classes of treatment resistant mental illness

The public consultation period ends COB on Friday 27 May 2022.

This is the last day that you will be able to lodge a public submission.

Make Submission Here

If the applications are successful this will be a historic moment – Please be part of it

“To my mind, the clinical evidence is clear…every day that this takes is a day that we lose people, and that’s not acceptable…”

Dr Tra-ill Dowie, dual PhD holder and co-founder of the Mind Medicine Institute speaks of the injustice of denying those in need treatments that can alleviate their suffering.

The Majority of Australians ALREADY Support the Regulation of Psychedelic-Assisted Therapy… But The Regulators Don’t Know Where You Stand. Show Them That It is Politically Safe to Listen to the Science By Making A Submission. Australians Deserve Better.