Many Mentally Ill Not Seeking Support
7 October 2010 at 12:05 pm
Governments need to improve community based mental health services to provide care for those mentally ill who don’t seek help, says welfare organisation Anglicare Sydney.
As many as two thirds of people with a mental illness do not seek formal support, according to Ian Jackson, Director of Community Care at Anglicare Sydney, who says continuing stigma about mental health is a significant issue that may prevent people from seeking help.
Kicking off Mental Health Month, Anglicare Sydney says it's time for the community to get over hang ups about mental health and be empowered to help people in need.
With one in five Australians experiencing some form of mental illness every year, Jackson says most people live, work, chat and laugh with people every day who may need a bit of help at some stage.
He says mental illness is just that – an illness that takes various forms and people should not be ashamed to speak about their needs or to provide help, but instead be confident and considerate in giving support.
ANGLICARE Sydney is calling on the State and Federal Governments to improve community-based mental health services, particularly for people re-entering the community after treatment.
Jill Wrathall, Manager of Anglicare’s Eastern Sydney services, says too often they work with people who have started living in the community again, but have not been connected with social support and as a result they become very isolated and risk having a relapse.
Wrathall says programs like the Australian Government’s Personal Helpers and Mentors program (PHaMS) run by ANGLICARE in South East Sydney are proving very effective.
October is Mental Health Month. View Anglicare’s General Mental Health Fact Sheet or head to Anglicare’s Mental Health Month website for more information.