Kevin, Mark and Adam (front), Business Unit co-ordinator Andy Chappell and Kelly (back) are hoping to increase community awareness of mental health issues.
Kevin, Mark and Adam (front), Business Unit co-ordinator Andy Chappell and Kelly (back) are hoping to increase community awareness of mental health issues. Mike Knott

Taking the first step to health

TAKING the first step is the biggest problem facing Bundaberg people with mental health issues, according to a leading rehabilitation centre.

Bridges executive officer Sharon Sarah said 25 people with various mental health issues including bipolar disorder, schizophrenia and depression sought help from the centre each day.

"We see 120 different people a month just in our mental health rehab and recovery system," she said.

The Bundaberg Region Mental Wellbeing Alliance along with the Bundaberg Regional Council will work together to raise awareness of the importance of mental health and wellbeing throughout this week as part of Mental Health Week (October 9-15).

The week aims to increase community awareness and education about mental health issues and to encourage participation in life-enhancing activities.

Bundaberg Regional Council community development officer Margaret Wass said it was hoped the activities would make people stop and think about their mental well-being.

"Hopefully they will do something to help themselves even if that is just picking up a brochure," she said.

"It can turn into a big problem and can get out of hand very quickly and it could be prevented if they seek help earlier."

Ms Sarah said often the biggest issue facing those suffering from mental health issues was taking that first step.

"There is a lot of social isolation and there is still a lot of stigma attached to people who suffer from various mental health issues," she said. "It's about having an environment that they are comfortable in coming to and getting the support they need."

To book into any of the Mental Health Week activities call Ms Wass on 4130 4155.

 

Activities

  • TODAY: Happiness Workshop. Impact, 9am-noon.
  • TODAY: Information display at the Gin Gin Neighbourhood Centre, 10am-1pm.
  • TOMORROW: Consumers and Carer barbecue and activity day. YMCA, 11am-2pm.
  • THURSDAY: Information and art work display. Hinkler Central.
  • THURSDAY: Information display at the Childers Visitor Centre, 10am-1pm.
  • FRIDAY: Caring for Workers. Followed by a workers luncheon at Impact.


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