Help is out there

Photo: file

I write on behalf of the Mental Illness Fellowship of Australia to urge readers who are impacted in any way by mental health issues to reach out and get help.

It is now estimated there are least at 150,000 people nationwide with a severe mental illness who are not actually getting the critical support they need.

1 in 100 Australians now lives with schizophrenia.

A massive 50 per cent of people with schizophrenia don’t get the help they need.

Too many of these people end up in emergency departments.

They also end up at a very serious risk of homelessness, poverty and social isolation.

Recent research reveals people who live with psychosis experience higher rates of heart and kidney disease, stroke, epilepsy, diabetes, arthritis and more.

People with mental health issues are some of our most vulnerable Australians.

We are calling for more community mental health support. It is badly needed.

We have a key network which is free of charge and works to help people.

It’s simply called The Finding North Network. It’s a place where people with first-hand experiences of mental illness can connect as a community. It is a place to share experiences and discuss ideas. It is safe and secure. It’s a growing on-line community of people who want to help others.

To find out more, go to

We want to stress, there is help available from GPs, psychiatrists, allied health professionals and community mental health organisations. There is still way too much stigma around the topic of mental health. It needs wiping away.

We all need to accept severe mental health conditions should be viewed like any other illness. They are ultimately an illness and help is out there.

Tony Stevenson,


Mental Illness Fellowship of Australia.