What happens when people leave a psychiatric ward? How can they best be supported to transition back home and live well? This was the focus of the 'Exit And Recovery' project I led for community peer support service and its local health provider.
For me DBT (Dialectical Behavioural Therapy) takes all the best bits of the better-known CBT (Cognitive Behavioural Therapy) and adds useful tools from Eastern traditions like acceptance and mindfulness. I felt privileged to be able to help the country's only residential DBT service with strategic and operational planing to improve accessibility and continue to deliver services.
How do we help people who do not engage with mental health services because of barriers like cost, geographic distance or even shame? And what about people who want to do things themselves and choose not to engage?
I was Principal Investigator on this research into over 600 people's experiences doing online CBT and self help and over 40 staff's perspectives on referring and delivering this service.
Reaching out for help can be a huge threshold to cross and helplines can help those who can't or don't want to visit a mental health or social service. I was privileged to be Lifeline's first national manager to bring together over a dozen silo'd services into one cohesive platform of helping and online support.