Page 16 - Just Better Care Possible Magazine - Issue 4
P. 16

 What is Black Dog Ride?
Black Dog Ride is a national non-for profit charity that raises awareness of depression and suicide prevention. It was founded in 2009 when Steve Andrews lost his mother and his mate’s wife to suicide in quick succession. He completed a solo lap of Australia to raise awareness and start a conversation around depression and suicide awareness. The rides and reputation have grown each year.
To find out more or to get involved, visit
Why should you do the course?
There are lots of reasons people complete the MHFA course: they want to support a fam- ily member or friend; they want to reduce the stigma; they have known someone who has completed suicide. Whatever the reason, they all contribute to society, making it a safer more accepting place.
What’s involved in MHFA training?
In a standard 12-hour course, participants learn how to identify signs and symptoms of common mental health conditions, including depressions, anxiety, psychosis, and problems associated with substance abuse, as well as suicidal thoughts and behaviours, self-harm, and panic attacks. MHFA is not therapy and does not teach participants how to diagnose a mental health condition.
What is involved in delivering mental health first aid?
The courses train the public on how to pro- vide assistance to someone who may be devel- oping a mental health condition, as well as how to respond in a crisis situation. Courses can be accessed by individuals interested in helping family members, friends, colleagues, neigh- bours and the general public or by businesses that would like to train their staff.
A bit of history.
In 1997, a National Mental Health Liter- acy Survey indicated a need for mental health training and support. Last year, 20 years after this finding, not-for-profit health charity organisation Mental Health First Aid Austra- lia reported it has trained half-a-million Aus- tralians in mental health first aid. That’s more than two per cent of the population.
Just Better Care goes mindful.
Numerous organisations have gone the extra step and had the business itself rec- ognised as a MHFA accredited business. Just Better Care Townsville is currently going through the accreditation process. This tells our customers, suppliers and the community more broadly that we take our role in the com- munity and service industry seriously.
I have met many people whose quality of life has been adversely affected, not only by the lack
of understanding of their own situation, but by the lack of understanding and knowledge of those around them.

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