Wellways eNews NDIS failing the most vulnerable 20 May 2018

‘The Flinders study found the NDIS worked best for participants and families who could “strongly advocate for themselves”, and left people with intellectual and psychosocial disabilities as well as older carers with health issues, at a disadvantage.’ from Wellways eNews


Inner South Family and Friends AGM Tuesday 10 October 2017

You are invited to our Annual General Meeting at Betty Day Centre on Tuesday 10

October 2017 to hear our guest Professor Jayashri Kulkarni

speak on ‘Research at MAPrc’


The research at Monash Alfred Psychiatry Research Centre (MAPrc) is recognized internationally as ground
-breaking.  Professor Kulkarni, Director of MAPrc
is internationally recognized as a leader in the area of women’s mental health.

For more information see flyer here AGM Professor Jayashi Kulkarni

Carer Statement and Consultations

Tandem Inc.
Level 1, 37 Mollison Street Abbotsford Victoria 3067
P 8803 5555 F 8803 5599
E info@tandemcarers.org.au

Carer Statement Consultation on 13 April
The Victorian Government is preparing to release a Carer Statement in Carers’ Week this year, and has commissioned Carers Victoria to conduct consultations and an online survey to ensure that there is an opportunity for a broad range of carers to have their say. You can read more about the Carer Statement and consultations here.


To contribute, and to make sure that the specific experience of mental health caring is incorporated in the document, Tandem will host a specialist consultation at the 13 April Monthly Members’ Meeting. After a short ordinary meeting, the consultation will commence at 10.30am. The consultation will be capped at 35 carers, so please RSVP when meeting papers are sent out.

You can also help to ensure that the voices of mental health carers are heard by completing the online survey.

Housing and Homelessness Consultation

From the Friday Extra Friday 31 March 2017

Update: National Mental Health Commission – Be a part of their consultation on Housing, Homelessness and Mental Health
The National Mental Health Commission is calling on consumers, carers, families and support people to share housing and homelessness experiences in relation to mental health through their online consultation until 24 April. The survey will be promoted through established networks and social media.  It would be great if you could please participate and/or promote through your connections.
Read here Housing and Homelessness Consultation

de Castella Run 2 Mend Minds

img_0642Penny and Judith jogging around the oval to the finish line

Penny, Judith, Judi and Molly (her dog) completed the 5km walk to raise funds for Monash Alfred Psychiatry Research Centre (MAPrc) on Sunday 28 August.  We were spurred on with an enthusiastic pep talk by Professor Jayashri Kulkarni, Director of MAPrc who is very fit and competes in the 10km run.

The competitors are a mix of very serious, fit athletes and those who enter for fun in fancy dress, with parents, children and babies in pushers.  We hope next year to encourage more ISFAF members to join us.  It’s a great atmosphere and you don’t have to be young and fit to do the 5km walk around the scenic Kew Boulevard course.

Donations to MAPrc can be made via website de Castella Run 2016 for Mental Health




de Castella Run 2 Mend Minds 28 August 2016

The annual de Castella run is a fund raising event for Monash Alfred Psychiatry Research Centre.  Several of our members have entered.  For more information see below.

Event Details

When: Sunday 28 August 2016

What: Three great running (or walking) events around the scenic Kew Boulevard to raise money for mental health research at MAPrc.

  1. Vision Personal Training 5km run/walk,
  2. Mizuno 10km run
  3. Nostra Homes 15km run

And don’t forget our wonderful  Run Ready Activity Program for kids ages 3.5 to 10 years
de Castella Run 2016 for Mental Health

Inner South Family and Friends Support Group Meeting Tuesday 9 August 2016

Venue: Betty Day Centre, 67 Argyle Street, St Kilda at 7.30pm

  •  Kirsten Gainsford, Research Assistant, Monash Alfred Psychiatry Research Centre (MAPrc)
    Will provide a short summary of a randomised clinical trial at MAPrc investigating a gentle form of brain stimulation and whether it can be used to improve thinking skills in people with diagnosed schizophrenia or schizoaffective disorder.
  •  Dr Brendan O’Hanlon, Mental Health Program Manager of Bouverie CentreTopic: ‘Family Sensitive Practice’
    Dr O’Hanlon’s responsibilities include guiding the work of the centre’s mental health program and building the capacity of the services in these sectors to work constructively with families.Among Dr Hanlon’s many interests are family psycho-educational approaches within mental health services including Behavioural Family Therapy and Multiple Family Groups. His talk will include methods of implementing an evidence-based family intervention within the routine practice of an Adult Mental Health Service and the psychological trauma affecting individuals directly and indirectly suffering from psychosocial disabilities /mental illness.

    The Bouverie Centre, part of La Trobe University is Victoria’s Family Institute, dedicated to promoting contextually compassionate human services, focussing on family and systemic approaches specifically in Mental Health, Alcohol and Other Drug, Gambling and related fields.

All welcome, light supper provided.

No need to RSVP but please come early if coming for the first time so we can introduce you to some of our committee members. We are generally there by 7.10pm. Supper is set up by 7.15. There is no charge, but a gold coin donation towards supper is always appreciated


Carers Speak about How they Cope with Mental Illness in the Family


This ‘Balanced Life’, is not easy to achieve – you really have to work at it, but I often try to remember the words of a prominent carer, Ken Alexander who said: “Never think that spending massive amounts of time with your loved one will help”. Unfortunately it is not that simple!

Frank and I have six children between us – five boys and one girl. Three of the boys are on the Disability Support Pension. One of my boys suffers from schizophrenia and is in a wheelchair, another suffers from bipolar 2 disorder and one of Frank’s two sons has schizophrenia and obsessive compulsive disorder.

These mental health problems present ongoing concerns for both of us and some people ask us ‘how do you cope?’ and the answer is by having frequent holidays. We have had many wonderful holidays over the ten years we have been together. They include numerous cruises; Alaska, Mediterranean, Caribbean and we are going on a cruise to South America in April this year.

We also belong to a time-share holiday scheme and have stayed in some great places in many parts of the world for a reasonable rate; eg Malta, England, Spain, France and our ever-popular destination, Bali. Well you might say, it’s okay if you are wealthy! Obviously we are not poor but we are on a part pension. But if you cannot afford overseas holidays, please try to get away a few times a year to recharge your batteries. Go to another state or have a seaside holiday in your own state. Sometimes you may be entitled to a few days away – MIND has 4-day respite and recreation events early in May and late May/June2016. Contact MIND, Mark Buljat on 9674 6700, mobile 0405384221 and speak to them about what they can offer you. Mental Illness Fellowship also offer breaks – call Jacinta Pope or Fiorella Mendoza on 9784 6800 for specifics. It need not be an expensive affair. If we did not have these great holidays to look forward to Frank and I may not be able to cope with the every day problems that occur. It’s the constant demands on your mental energy that can really wear you down! If this starts to affect your health, in the long run you will not be any use to anybody, so it is most important to look after yourself. Some carers are so caught up in the problems of their mentally ill loved ones they forget about their own needs; also the needs of the rest of their family. Frank and I work towards the day when we won’t be here and know that whilst our loved ones will miss us, we have tried to make them as independent as possible

I also believe that belonging to a group of people who have like-minded problems, talking with them in a safe environment and listening to interesting speakers on this topic can be very beneficial over time. I am proud of the group I belong to – ‘Inner South Family and Friends Support Group’. We have been going for 25 years and have over 200 members. In that time we have been very active and have been on many government committees concerning mental health and had input from a carer’s perspective; something that is often overlooked!


Judy and Frank in Bali 2015

Judy and Frank in the Caribbean 2015

Judy and Frank in the Caribbean 2015

Frank and Judy Carroll
16 February 2016

ISFAF Annual General Meeting 2014

You are invited to our AGM on Tuesday 12 August 2014, 7.30pm in the Dining Hall at Betty Day Centre, 67 Argyle Street, St Kilda.  Guest speaker is Professor Jayashri Kulkarni, MBBS, MPM, FRANZCP, PhD from the Monash Alfred Psychiatry Research Centre.  The centtre is one of the largest in Australia dedicated to discovering new treatments, new understanding and new services for people with a range of mental illnesses.

Please RSVP on 9076 4713 if coming for a first time.  Refreshments are provided at the meeting.

De Castella Run for Mental Health 2014

Sunday 31 August 2014, Nolan Avenue, Kew, Telephone 041 041 7920, email info@decastellarun.com.au, http://decastellarun.com.au

Named in honour of one of our greatest ever distance runners, the 34th de Castella Run – for mental health is one of Melbourne’s longest standing fun runs. It features 5k, 10K or 15K courses and a new kids run for 2014, all on the scenic and challenging Kew Boulevard. The event is community based and a family friendly event, with children’s activities and the post-event Mind and Body Expo. The event raises awareness and valuable funds for mental health research at the Alfred and Monash Psychiatry Research Centre (MAPrc) MAPrc conducts cutting edge clinical research to improve treatments and quality of life for the many people living with serious mental illnesses like schizophrenia, depression and bipolar disorder.

 The de Castella Run is proud to partner with the Monash Alfred Psychiatry Research Centre (MAPrc) to raise funds and awareness for mental illness and the urgent need for new treatments. You can help mend minds by asking your friends and family to sponsor you in the this years run. Fundraising is easy, just follow the link to set up your own fundraising page and then email your friends to invite them to support you! There are great fundraising prizes to be won too! Follow the prompts when entering to set up your fundraising page.

To support our Inner South Family and Friends’ team in  the run just follow the following steps:
1. https://decastellarun.gofundraise.com.au
2. the name of our team is Inner South Family and Friends
3. the password is: isfaf
4. the rest is up to you!