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Advocacy
Advocacy

Queensland Mental Health Select Committee Inquiry 

In December 2021 Queensland Parliament established the Mental Health Select Committee to conduct an inquiry into the “opportunities to improve mental health outcomes for Queenslanders”. The committee invited Queenslanders and organisations to share their views and is now holding public briefings and hearings until March. The committee is then due to report back to the House by Tuesday 31 May 2022.  Arafmi and Carers Qld developed a joint submission for the Mental Health Select Committee highlighting the needs of Mental Health Carers and opportunities to make significant changes. (Insert link to submission) On 18th February we were invited to formally attend a hearing to provide further details directly to the committee. This was an excellent opportunity to highlight the real needs of mental health carers. On behalf of Arafmi we thank Dr Alexis Wallace form the Arafmi Carer Advisory Committee for joining us on the panel and strengthening the voice of the carers for the committee. Details about all the submission and hearings can be found Committee Details | Queensland Parliament  See the submission here

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Audit
News

Participate in the external audit of the Carer Support Programs and Supports 

We are starting 2022 with our external surveillance audit. On 4 January 2022 Arafmi Carer Programs and Supports will be audited against the National Standards for Mental Health Services 2010.  This audit includes reviewing policies, procedures and practices to ensure the standards are being met and any areas for development are identified. The focus will mainly be on Standard 7 – Carers and Standard 8 – Governance, Leadership and Management.  We will be visited at head office by Beth Jooste, Lead Auditor for Sai Global and a client representative. The auditors will spend the day reviewing documentation, meeting with the Carer Support Team and Management staff and connecting with carers.  If you would like to provide feedback to the auditors via the phone on the afternoon of Tuesday, 4 January 2022 please email your interest to alextyson@arafmi.com.au by Monday 20 December 2021. We can then make contact to provide further details in preparation for 4 January 2022. 

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We have moved
News

We have moved!

We have moved! Last week we bid farewell to our office at Chermside Street, Teneriffe and moved into 6 Ambleside Street, West End. It’s a new suburb for us but it’s the same old team! Carer Support team activities including face- to-face counselling and workshops will now be provided from this space. As mentioned earlier, Arafmi is redeveloping the house on Harcourt Street, New Farm which will become the Carer Hub. Once the Carer Hub is completed, the carer support team will then move back to New Farm and be based at the Carer Hub. We don’t anticipate this happening until 2023.

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Christmas Financials
News

Need to brighten up your Christmas/New Year financial plans? 

As the end of the year draws to a close and Christmas is well and truly nigh, it seems a perfect time to review what financial supports are available to help you stretch your dollars further or recover from any unexpected costs that may have arisen.  So, whether a person in your care needs assistance managing and saving their money or you need an immediate injection of food or funds to help make the season feel more festive, have a look through the following links to see if there’s a service that might bring you some added cheer:    Christmas hampers/gift assistance   The Salvation Army offers free hampers and gifts to eligible applicants. Call the general enquiry line for more information: 137258. Website: Food hamper and gift assistance | The Salvation Army Australia    Wesley Mission Brisbane Relief Centre. Drop-In Support in Fortitude Valley: https://www.wmq.org.au/crisis-relief/brisbane-relief-hub  St Vincent de Paul - As an unprecedented number of Queenslanders face a festive season filled with financial burden and stress rather than hope and joy, Vinnies’ Members and Volunteers across the state have been working overtime to gather and distribute hampers of goods, including food, vouchers and toys, for those doing it tough this Christmas. Those in need of support this Christmas are encouraged to reach out to Vinnies Helpline on 1800 846 643  The Smith Family are offering  e-gift vouchers for children’s toys (in lieu of toy and book gift packs). Accessible to children who are part of the Learning for Life program. https://www.thesmithfamily.com.au/donate/give/toy-and-book-appeal  Free Christmas Lunch Saturday 25 Dec:    The Hope

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Your Rights
News

Update: your rights, expectations & feedback

You may be new to Arafmi or have been connected with Arafmi in some way over a number of years. It is important for all carers that we take time to remind everyone about rights, expectations and how to give feedback to ensure safe and supportive services and programs are maintained.  We ask you to take a couple of minutes to familiarise yourself with the following information.  As a carer connecting with Arafmi you can expect Arafmi will:  only collect and store personal information that is considered essential for effective operation of Arafmi and the services for carers e.g. contact details for membership database, contact details to send newsletters and reminders for events  will maintain confidentiality within Arafmi at all times  will only release or transmit your personal information if you give relevant consent or we are required to share this by law. e.g. if you would like to be referred to another service we would gain your consent before making the referral and sharing personal details to a third party  ask for your consent prior to recording material in visual and/or audio format. This includes having your consent prior to including images in newsletters, flyers and promotions  ensure when collecting information for statistical and planning purposes we will only collect what is needed for these purposes and de-identify information when personal details are not

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Young Carer Research Results
News

Young Carers in Australia

Last year, with Little Dreamers we commissioned Griffith University to complete research about young carers in Australia. The results were shared at our annual Carer Forum in October 2021.

The project explored:

caring roles of Young Carers
health and wellbeing, psycho-social disability and risk-taking behaviours of Young Carers
implications of caring responsibilities for educational and employment outcomes of Young Carers, and
support, barriers to support, and further support needs for Young Carers

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ARAFMI Carer Forum 2021
Mental Health

National Carers Week and Queensland Mental Health Week 2021

National Carers Week and Queensland Mental Health Week was celebrated from 10 – 16 October 2021 and the Arafmi Team was busy all week with stalls at the West Moreton Mental Health Expo, Caring for Carers event at St John QLD, West End and the Brisbane Mental Health Expo. Arafmi was also a sponsor of the Carers Queensland, Carer Friendly Business Awards event on Tuesday, 12 October and we would like to congratulate all the winners – well done!  Arafmi also hosted two events for our mental health carers – one was a collaboration with the Lovewell Foundation/Lovewell Café at Mt Gravatt Outlook and the other was our annual Carer Forum. Lovewell – Take Time to Connect    It’s a beautiful morning up at the Mt Gravatt Outlook with our wonderful carers. lovewell 1 lovewell 2 lovewell 3 lovewell 4 We were very pleased to co-host an event with the team at Lovewell Foundation and the Lovewell Café up at Mt Gravatt Outlook. The event was possible thanks to the 2021 Queensland Mental Health Week Community Events Grant Program.   The Lovewell café provided delicious treats for carers, and wellness activities were available including yoga and aromatherapy. Stallholders from organisations such as the Carer Gateway, Lives Lived Well, Stepping Stones and Carers Queensland were also onsite to help provide information to our carers. Despite the rain we had a very impressive turnout and as you can see from the photos – a good time was had by all!  Carer Forum 20211013 ARAFMI Carers Forum 107 20211013

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Queensland Healths New Plan for Mental Health Alcohol and Other Drugs
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Carer Consultation – Queensland Health’s New Plan for Mental Health Alcohol and Other Drugs

Queensland Health via the Mental Health Alcohol and Other Drugs Branch (MHAODB) is seeking feedback from carers to inform the development of a new plan for future state funded mental health, alcohol and drug services.  As part of the planning process, carers who have experience of the Queensland mental health system are being consulted. Queensland Health’s MHAODB have engaged Arafmi to hear your views and collate responses and feedback.   At the close of the consultation, Arafmi will prepare a report based on your responses and feedback. This will include identified issues, barriers and strategies for Queensland Health to consider in future planning.  Below are the necessary links to RSVP for your preferred method of participation: Online workshop 1 (Zoom): When: 12:30pm – 2:30pm, Friday, 6 AugustRSVP: Sorry, workshop 1 is FULL. Another workshop has been added below. Online workshop 2 (Zoom):When: 10am – 11:30am, Thursday, 5 August,RSVP: Register via Zoom here Online survey: Take the survey here Survey closes: 5pm  Fri 6/8/21 Face-to-face workshop:When: 11:30am – 2:00pm, Friday, 30 July,Where: Common Ground Queensland, 15 Hope Street, South Brisbane,RSVP: Sorry, this workshop in now FULL. Please note that those taking part in the face-to-face workshop, the online workshop or the one-on-one consultation will be reimbursed for their time. In recognition of your time and contribution, remuneration will be $40/hr in the form of gift cards.   If

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Carer Story

National Volunteer Week

Former Australian Politician Elizabeth Andrew once said “volunteers do not necessarily have the time, they have the heart”. This wonderful group within our community numbers almost 6 million nationwide and without them, many of those who are vulnerable and at risk would not receive the support they need.   From 17 – 23 May we celebrate and recognise our volunteers, the unpaid workers among us who donate their time to help those in need. The theme for this year is Recognise. Reconnect. Reimagine.   At Arafmi, we are very lucky to have volunteers who help us facilitate some of our carer support groups as well as working with our telephone support line for carers. Louise and Sharni are two such volunteers, and as part of National Volunteer Week this year, we sat down with them both to chat about what it’s like to volunteer. Thank-you to Louise and Sharni for taking the time to share their volunteering story with us and allowing us to share it with you. Here’s to all the volunteers out there who offer up their time to help others in need. Thank-you for making the world a better place. Louise Volunteer Telephone Support Worker 28 years with Arafmi Louise and her husband Roger first discovered Arafmi when their teenage son was diagnosed with bipolar disorder in 1993. When I asked Louise where they

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NMHCCF Web
News

National Mental Health Consumer and Carer Forum (NMHCCF) Queensland Carer Representative

The Queensland Mental Health Commission has engaged Arafmi and Carers Queensland to undertake a recruitment of the National Mental Health Consumer and Carer Forum (NMHCCF) Queensland Carer Representative. The NMHCCF was established in 2002 by the then Australian Health Ministers Advisory Council Mental Health Standing Committee in recognition of the continued need for mental health consumer and carer involvement at the highest level of policy development. The carer representative role provides an opportunity for mental health consumers and carers to foster partnerships and to ensure input of consumers and carers into the activities of the mental health sector, including policy, service delivery and evaluation of reform in Australia. A full position description can be found here. A list of frequently asked questions is available at this link. To apply for the role, please complete the application below. If you would prefer the application be posted to you, or if you have any questions about this opportunity, please contact Alex Tyson at the Arafmi office at 3254 1881. Closing date for this role is 5pm Monday, 24 May 2021. Applications are now closed.

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