October is Mental Health month

As we head into October, Flourish Australia has been preparing for mental health month. This year's theme is Tune In and it's all about taking stock and focusing on what's happening within your own life and the world around you. 

The Tune In theme asks people to: 

- Tune in to their senses – what can you sense right now? What can you feel? 
- Tune In to their communities – what’s happening that you can be part of, or that you can help others be part of? 
- Tune In to stigma – how do attitudes and understandings of mental health and wellbeing impact people’s ability to live the lives they want?

The focus on stigma is particularly welcome. Stigma, whether it's coming from community attitudes or things we tell ourselves, can create barriers to people accessing support. But good mental health and wellbeing isn't just the responsibility of the individual - a range of environmental factors can contribute to poor mental health. By tackling stigma, we begin to acknowledge broader experiences of discrimination, inequality, intergenerational trauma, access to services, and government policies can all play a role in negatively impacting mental health. 

Valuing lived experience is one of the key ways to tackle stigma. Increasingly the insights of those with lived experience is being included in research, policy decisions, and service development, which will lead to better support that meets the needs of our communities. By "Tuning In" to stigma people can better recognise stigma and understand how to create more inclusive spaces.

Flourish Australia will be participating and hosting a range of events over the month. Keep an eye on our social media where we will be promoting them. World Mental Health Day on October 10 is certainly one to mark in the calendar.