Mental Health Week 2015 - it's a wrap!

Mental Health Week is officially over for another year.
Thank you to everyone who helped this important national health campaign reach new heights in 2015 around Western Australia.

More than 15,000 people were estimated to be involved in community events and awareness raising activities across the State during Mental Health Week WA.

Mental Health Week and the 2015 theme, Act-Belong-Commit (courtesy of Mentally Healthy WA)  reached children; youth; families; parents; government, community and business employees and employers; Aboriginal communities; mental health hospitals, and a diverse range of individuals across the State.

The Western Australian Association for Mental Health and the Mental Health Commission partnered with Perth Theatre Trust this year to organise the biggest Opening Ceremony event ever for Mental Health Week, attracting a sell-out crowd of 1200 people for Stand Up for Comedy at His Majesty's Theatre. This hilarious evening was hosted by Perth-born comedian and international star, Joel Creasey; featured the cream of local comedic talent; and received glowing reviews.

Majestic His Majesty's Theatre plays host to Opening Ceremony


Comedian Joel Creasey lights up the crowd at Stand Up for Comedy (right)

Comedians (from left) Ciaran Lyons, Sami Shah, Janelle Koenig, Hayden Stevens, and Ivan Aristeguieta

A sea of laughter inside stunning His Majesty's Theatre (right)

Huge week of events!

In addition to the comedy show, there were music concerts, beach sports, art exhibitions, quiz nights, movie screenings, workplace seminars, parent's forums, dance workshops, tai chi, sundowners, awards galore, stalls in shopping malls, charity walks, university events, flash mobs, discos, mental health workshops and so much more!

Hundreds passed through the inaugural Beach Sports Day at Scarborough Beach Amphitheatre with young and old participating in volleyball, cricket, yoga and dance on the beach, as part of promoting physically healthy and connected communities.

For the first time during Mental Health Week, WAAMH encouraged libraries and GP clinics in the Perth metro area to display Mental Health Week posters and resources, which was found to be hugely effective.

Face painting with OneWave at Scarborough Beach

Blaze, the Perth Scorchers dragon dances with Elan dancers at the Beach Sports Day.

Yoga by the sea


Perfect weather conditions for Beach Volleyball

Workplaces step up

Workplace mental health was on the agenda again with a full house at the Workplace Wellbeing Wednesday seminar in Central Park, which was also recorded via weblink.

Blue Shirt Wednesday showed no sign of slowing down as the corporate community donned blue shirts to raise awareness about workplace mental health. Australian Institute of Management WA and LifelineWA co-hosted a panel event to help managers respond at work, while WAAMH joined forces with Safe Work October for a second year, to deliver two workplace mental health sessions at Curtin University for OSH and HR professionals.

Hundreds gathered throughout the City of Perth during the week for a free film screening, tai chi, dance and yoga lessons, plus the annual Murray Street Mall awareness stall with volunteers handing out free give-aways and mental health resources.

Workplace Wellbeing Wednesday

Act-Belong-Commit Ambassador Garth Civil

Something for everyone

Around 250 people attended a free parent's session at HBF Stadium, presented by the highly engaging and knowledgeable Dr Helen Street, titled, 'Better Thank Ok - Helping Young People Flourish'.

The annual Good Outcome Awards hosted by the Mental Health Commission celebrated the outstanding contributions made by individuals and organisations in the mental health sector to improving mental health outcomes at The UWA Club.

The Aboriginal Community Day at Bob Blackburn Reserve attracted around 200 Noongar elders, family members and mental health service professionals to share in learning and yarning.

Aboriginal Community and Family Day in Armadale

Annual elders running race

WAAMH team with elders Uncle Charlie Kickett, Aunty Helen Kickett and Michael Wright

Regional WA celebrates

Regional events occurred all around WA in Capel, Margaret River, Wheatbelt, Mandurah, Cranbrook, Albany, Esperance, Bunbury, Geraldton, Port Hedland, Cowaramup, Onslow, Broome, Wangan-Ballidu, and Kalgoorlie.

Again, WAAMH received more than 1000 requests for Mental Health Week resources this year, and nearly 200 agencies, including universities, workplaces and schools hosted their own local community events and activities to raise awareness and celebrate Mental Health Week 2015.

WAAMH contributed $15,000 to 30 community events around WA, after receiving a record-breaking number of grant applications, demonstrating the groundswell of Mental Health Week support.

Photos and Media

The West Australian’s Health and Medicine published another successful 24-page magazine focused on mental health across the whole community. Of note was the cover article on WA's suicide prevention ambassadors Fremantle Dockers' Michael Walters and West Coast Fever's Courtney Bruce. Read the lift-out here.

ABC TV and Radio did a wonderful job running the 'Mental As' week of programming again this year which significantly helped raise awareness around the Mental Health Week campaign.

In addition to these news outlets, Mental Health Week received significant media coverage across The Sunday Times, Perth Now, commercial radio, BusinessNews, Community News and ScoopRead all Mental Health Week coverage, here.

Social media helped #MentalHealthWeek2015 go viral on both Twitter and Facebook, and it was lovely to see everyone sharing their photos, activities, events, and wellbeing tips throughout the week.

Photos from Mental Health Week 2015 can be viewed on the Mental Health Week WA Facebook page and on WAAMH's Flickr feed.

Stand Up for Comedy, Beach Sports, Aboriginal Family Day and Art Exhibition photos courtesy of John Nettleton Photography.

(From left) WAAMH program manager Philleen Dickson, president Alison Xamon and CEO Rod Astbury

Mental Health Week Art Exhibition

Mental Health Commissioner Tim Marney

Minister for Mental Health The Hon. Helen Morton

Thank you!

Thanks to the Mental Health Week Steering Committee who donated their time in 11 month lead-up to the week and in the many days (and nights!) during it. The steering group comprised the following members:

  • Brooke Johns and Helen Cromie from WAAMH
  • Alison Batcheler and Marsha Dale from Mental Health Commission
  • Sarah Graham from Act-Belong-Commit
  • Sophie Kesacoff and Ann Redman from Ruah
  • Ernie Hansen form Lorikeet Centre
  • Ashley Nanini from headspace
  • Joshua Cunniffe from YACWA
  • Daniella Joyce from City of Perth
  • Jennifer Hughes from Helping Minds
  • Mel Davis from Diabetes WA
  • Mat Darch from Curtin University
  • David Hoffman from Mindflix
  • Michelle Wood from Grow WA
  • Fergus Masters from Relationships WA
  • Nancy Malouf from Richmond Wellbeing

Thanks to our 2015 Sponsors, Partners and Supporters

  • Mental Health Commission
  • Perth Theatre Trust
  • Mentally Healthy WA
  • Lotterywest
  • St Vincent de Paul Society
  • MercyCare
  • Rise
  • Metropolitan Redevelopment Authority
  • Samaritans
  • Anglicare WA
  • Rio Tinto
  • City of Perth
  • Volleyball WA
  • Perth Scorchers
  • Perth Beach Volleyball School

Thanks to our 2015 Volunteers

Support from our volunteers was overwhelming and greatly appreciated. Thanks to everyone who helped out, in particular, a special thanks to UWA Psychology student Tim Lorian who volunteered one day a week since April and was extremely helpful during Mental Health Week.

Big thanks also to Storn Peterson from Enterprise 33 for being everywhere it counted to be seen with his mental health resources-filled ute, again in 2015.

One such example of Storn's positive influence was when he supported a young man - who'd attempted suicide the day before - to get his life back on track when he happened to be in the right place at the right time, approaching Storn in the Murray Street Mall.

Free mental health resources and advice in the heart of Perth.

Storn and his decorated suicide prevention trailer

Mentally Healthy WA's Act-Belong-Commit 2015 theme was well received by the public

See you in 2016!

Although Mental Health Week is officially over for another year, many events continue to take place throughout October, including the Arts Exhibition at YMCA Leederville running until 15 October and the Spirits and Spooks concert on 25 October.

See Mental Health Week events page for all upcoming events.

Thanks again for everyone's involvement. We look forward to seeing you next year for another successful Mental Health Week!

If you are interested in being considered for the Mental Health Week 2016 steering committee, becoming a sponsor, or partnering to co-host a large community event, please email