NDIS Enews 12 August 2022

Participant spotlight with a cartoon of a mother reading a book to a child

Participant spotlight

In honour of International Day of Friendship on July 30, we shared a story about Bill and his brother-in-law Kyran.

The dynamic duo have become TikTok sensations and are showing the world the true meaning of friendship, creating videos about their unique bond.

They have almost a million followers on TikTok, with their videos featuring dance moves, humour and messages about embracing diversity. They refer themselves as the Brother Boys.

Watch their videos on TikTok (opens in new window).

Read their story (opens in new window).

Click on the link below to read the complete newsletter:


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 mentalhealthpolicy@health.vic.gov.au.

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

Wellways Help Break the Cycle


Green, blue, yellow and purple blobs and the Wellways logo

Help Break the Cycle

I’m Ned Evans, Suicide Prevention Community Development Coordinator from the Wagga Wagga office and I want to personally invite you to join us to Break The Cycle – and help prevent suicide.

From September 5 to World Suicide Prevention Day on September 10 we’re asking people to jump on a bike, or take part in other physical activities or suicide prevention training, and let us know.

Together, across our communities, we want to ride and clock up 3139kms, to remember the thousands of people in Australia who die by suicide each year.

You can take part as an individual, or set up a team of friends or community to help us reach our goal.

Can you join us?

Donate or register to take part in Break the Cycle by clicking the button below.

? I’m IN! ?

If you have any questions, go to our  Break the Cycle website, or contact donations@wellways.org.

As well as providing support to individuals who have attempted suicide and their families, we connect with and guide families, friends and workplaces who have lost someone to suicide.

We’re working with communities every day to start conversations, raise awareness and link loved ones with support that can literally save a life.  This includes providing education and awareness and being a sounding board to help increase resilience and coping.

Taking part will help us do more of this important work.

Thanks in advance for your support!

A picture of a man with sunglasses. He is the Suciide Prevention Community Development Coordinator Ned Evans. To the left of him is the logo for Break the Cycle with the words 'Break the Cycle' 'Share the Journey'.

Yours sincerely,

Ned Evans
Suicide Prevention Community Development Coordinator

Inner South Family and Friends Carer Support Group Meeting Tuesday 9 August 2022


GUEST SPEAKERS: Shannon Arenson, Dispensary Manager, Seutika Pharmacy, Medical Practitioner

TOPIC: Cannabis – What we have seen so far – Perspectives on Medical Marihuana from a mother and professionals

VENUE: Level four, Spotless Building, 549 St Kilda Road, Melbourne
The “Spotless Building’ is a little to the city side of Wesley College,
And has white umbrellas in the forecourt.
Lots of free parking in the centre lanes of St Kilda Road, with many trams stopping at the door. If you are having trouble with transport/ seek further information or just need a chat, please phone: Eleni on 0412 018 722
Please come early to enjoy our return to customary chat and light supper before the speaker
Due to security needs, we are required to pay a concierge at the door of the building.

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:

A progress report on the effectiveness of mental health and wellbeing reform


Our Reform

A progress report on the effectiveness of mental health and wellbeing reform from the people who use the system


On 6 September 2022 Victoria’s three mental health sector peak bodies, the Victorian Mental Illness Awareness Council (VMIAC), Tandem, and Mental Health Victoria, will host a major, sector-wide conference focused on Victoria’s mental health reform journey.

The conference will be launched by Victoria’s Minister for Mental Health, Minister Gabrielle Williams. Senior representatives from the Victorian Government will be invited to engage in high-level, solutions focused policy discussions, led by the Victorian mental health sector, including the consumers, carers, families and supporters at the heart of our system.

This will be an opportunity for Victoria’s mental health sector to thoughtfully examine key reform initiatives from the first 18 months of Victoria’s reform journey, including legislative reform, service system reform in clinical and community settings, Aboriginal Social and Emotional Wellbeing, and Lived Experience reform.

Event details
Date: Tuesday 6 September 2022
Time: 9.30am – 5pm
Location: Pullman Hotel, Albert Park, 65 Queens Rd, Albert Park VIC 3004

Buy tickets


“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

Extract from ProBono News

ProBono News

Inspiration corner

Looking for a mid-week smile? Kate Bush has had a resurgence in popularity lately thanks to the phenomenon that is Stranger Things, which features her hit song Running Up That Hill. And Brisbane’s Pub Choir have taken it to a new level with their stirring rendition, available on YouTube. It’s so good, even Kate Bush herself responded – check the comments to see what she said! (YouTube)

Click on the link below to access the newsletter:


Outdoors Inc. Participant Information Session



Participant Information Session – July 2022
You’re invited to find out more about Out Doors Inc. at our next information session.

This session is your chance to find out more about the range of activities we offer and to ask us any questions. It will also give you a feel for what becoming involved in the Out Doors Inc. community is like and give you the opportunity to meet other potential participants and some members of our staff. Following this session, you will be invited to book an intake meeting if you’re ready to get started with Out Doors.

This is a FREE session that will take place between 1:00pm – 2:00pm on Thursday 28 July at the Out Doors Inc. office in Kensington (11 Stubbs St, Kensington VIC 3031).

Snacks, tea, and coffee will be provided.

Register your interest by clicking the “REGISTER” button (below) and entering your details. Alternatively, you can contact us by phone on 03 9417 2111 or email us at intake@outdoorsinc.org.au

Register Now