Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Lived Experience Network
We believe that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people need their own voices of Lived Experience to help mental health services create culturally appropriate solutions for our First Nations people. This network will inform, enable and deliver better services, care and programs to improve mental health outcomes and ultimately save lives.
There is now widespread recognition of the value of Lived Experience in informing and improving suicide prevention activities and mental health service delivery. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people need their own voices of Lived Experience to help mental health services create solutions that work for their culture and people.
Founded within Black Dog Institute and led by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, Black Dog will leverage the support, connections and learnings required to establish and enable an Indigenous-led National Lived Experience Network.
Currently in Australia there is a lack of shared understanding in the broader mental health sector of what Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Lived Experience expertise looks like, and how successful consultation with these voices can be achieved. This Lived Experience Network will be the conduit that links networks together to mobilize, amplify and enable the right people to have a seat at the table to deliver culturally focused and safe Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander-led suicide prevention and mental wellbeing.
What will the Lived Experience Network deliver?
- Culturally in-tune service design and delivery – through the development and support of a “workforce” of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander advocates, we will positively address culture and lived experience through the involvement of Indigenous people directly on service design and delivery.
- Support where it’s needed – the network will support mainstream organisations to effectively and meaningfully engage lived experience expertise in the delivery of mental health and suicide prevention programs.
- Australia First, International Example – this is the first time a national network for Indigenous Lived Experience has been approved by government at the Federal level. The network will provide an international example of the Australian government’s collaboration, support and value of Australia’s First Nations People.
- Evidence and Best Practice focus – the network will directly support existing recommendations arising from our partnership with the Centre of Best Practice in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Suicide Prevention (CBPATSISP) and the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Suicide Prevention Evaluation Project report (ATSISPEP).
- By the people, for the people – the network will be led by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, established to inform, influence and enhance culturally-appropriate suicide prevention activities and mental health support programs that work for our First Nations people.