Alliance Against Depression

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The Alliance Against Depression tagline: Mental Health is Everyone's Business

Good mental health is fundamental to the wellbeing of individuals, families and communities.

The strong link between depression and suicide requires a focus on improving access to primary mental health care for all people. This can be achieved by raising awareness of depression, by increasing the number of people who seek treatment and by reducing stigma around depression and suicide.

The Alliance Against Depression (AAD) is an approach based on evaluated trials and is recognised as the world’s best practice for the care of people with depression and in the prevention of suicidal acts. The initial implementation of

Good mental health is fundamental to the wellbeing of individuals, families and communities.

The strong link between depression and suicide requires a focus on improving access to primary mental health care for all people. This can be achieved by raising awareness of depression, by increasing the number of people who seek treatment and by reducing stigma around depression and suicide.

The Alliance Against Depression (AAD) is an approach based on evaluated trials and is recognised as the world’s best practice for the care of people with depression and in the prevention of suicidal acts. The initial implementation of the framework in the trial region of Nuremberg (The Nuremberg Alliance Against Depression) resulted in a 24% reduction of suicidal acts within a two-year period.

The AAD Coordination Centre at WA Primary Health Alliances supports local Alliances with resources, tools, and case studies. These support materials are informed by the European Alliance Against Depression (EAAD) Coordination Centre in Germany and from other alliances globally.


The Alliance Against Depression Framework

Anyone can start an Alliance

All local Alliances start with a small number or people wanting to improve the mental health and well-being of their community. Those ‘initiators’ then follow three stages to work with networks across the community to prepare, plan and implement their local Alliance.


  • 2020 Mental Health Week grants available

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    18 days ago

    Grants of up $1,000 are available for organisations to hold community events and activities which supports the goals of Mental Health Week (10-17 October 2020). Apply for funding and read the criteria here.

    Mental Health Week is a national week celebrated each year in October kicking off with World Mental Health Day on October 10. This year’s Mental Health Week theme is Strengthening Our Community – Live, Learn, Work, Play continuing to aim at increasing mental wellbeing in WA communities. Find out more and download resources here.

    Grants of up $1,000 are available for organisations to hold community events and activities which supports the goals of Mental Health Week (10-17 October 2020). Apply for funding and read the criteria here.

    Mental Health Week is a national week celebrated each year in October kicking off with World Mental Health Day on October 10. This year’s Mental Health Week theme is Strengthening Our Community – Live, Learn, Work, Play continuing to aim at increasing mental wellbeing in WA communities. Find out more and download resources here.

  • Inside My Mind depression awareness campaign wins gold

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    3 months ago

    The Inside My Mind depression awareness campaign by WA Primary Health Alliance has won best Television Campaign, and Best Integrated Campaign, at the Campaign Brief Awards.

    This announcement closely follows Inside My Mind receiving a silver award for Best Online Film and three bronze awards across Best TV Individual, Best TV Campaign and Best Integrated Campaign at the Perth Advertising and Design Club awards, and receiving a finalist nomination in the category of Marketing Excellence at the AIM WA Pinnacle Awards.

    The campaign aimed to reach at-risk populations with higher than average suicide rates, as part of the Australian Government...

    The Inside My Mind depression awareness campaign by WA Primary Health Alliance has won best Television Campaign, and Best Integrated Campaign, at the Campaign Brief Awards.

    This announcement closely follows Inside My Mind receiving a silver award for Best Online Film and three bronze awards across Best TV Individual, Best TV Campaign and Best Integrated Campaign at the Perth Advertising and Design Club awards, and receiving a finalist nomination in the category of Marketing Excellence at the AIM WA Pinnacle Awards.

    The campaign aimed to reach at-risk populations with higher than average suicide rates, as part of the Australian Government National Suicide Prevention Trials, to help them recognise depression in themselves or others, and to direct them to the best help available for their unique needs.

    The campaign documents the true stories of four Western Australians with lived experience of depression, using real people rather than actors, to empower lived experience in the suicide prevention sector, and to promote authenticity in marketing.

    “It is exciting to have the campaign recognised at this level, as it gives real people in the community a voice,” Suicide Prevention Program Manager, Sharleen Delane said.

    “People with a lived experience of depression bring insight, wisdom and a unique perspective that is critical to informing the best approaches to suicide prevention and community education.”

    “This was especially important for Inside My Mind as it gave our audience proof that they are not alone in their experience, and that while that experience can be varied and complex, there is real hope for a journey back from depression.”

    However, sharing a personal story of mental health can bring up uncomfortable or distressing feelings and it is critical to create a safe, supportive space for sharing when engaging lived experience speakers.

    WA Primary Health Alliance aimed to lead by example in the mental health sector and media by empowering community members with lived experience to share their story, but also by safeguarding them appropriately in the process.

    “All participants had a support staff member allocated during filming, who continued to check in with participants in the days and months following the creation of the campaign,” Sharleen said.

    “When new media opportunities presented, participants were approached openly and encouraged to voice any concerns or decline any opportunities they did not feel prepared for.”

    Additionally, WA Primary Health Alliance used the Mindframe guidelines to inform the campaign which supports safe media reporting and communication about mental ill-health, and took an active role in ensuring all media reporting around the campaign adhered to these guidelines.

    After garnering more than 5 million views in just four months, the campaign has been relaunched, using key learnings from the initial success to explore new avenues and reach more people, who may be feeling overwhelmed, anxious, or low, during uncertain times. It shows the variety of ways you can take positive steps for your mental health, and continues to showcase real people and real stories.

    WA Primary Health Alliance hopes to encourage other organisations in Western Australia to consider safely empowering real people to share their stories, to safeguard lived experience participants in initiatives, and to report on mental ill health responsibly.

    WA Primary Health Alliance would like to acknowledge the significant contribution of creative partners RARE and Carat Australia, who went above and beyond to support the Inside My Mind campaign in its first launch and its continuation.

  • Adapting to the current online environment

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    3 months ago

    We can all appreciate Coronavirus is a rapidly changing environment for all of us. The community in Fremantle decided that now more than ever a local Alliance is important and physical distancing would not get in their way. They jumped online mid-March to discuss their community response to Coronavirus as well what actions they need to take to move forward to Alliance Against Depression. There are lots of options for virtual meetings so human connection and local AAD meetings don't need to stop, we just need to do things a little differently. You can try Zoom or Google Hangout just to name a couple. If you know of any good one please share in the comments.

    We can all appreciate Coronavirus is a rapidly changing environment for all of us. The community in Fremantle decided that now more than ever a local Alliance is important and physical distancing would not get in their way. They jumped online mid-March to discuss their community response to Coronavirus as well what actions they need to take to move forward to Alliance Against Depression. There are lots of options for virtual meetings so human connection and local AAD meetings don't need to stop, we just need to do things a little differently. You can try Zoom or Google Hangout just to name a couple. If you know of any good one please share in the comments.

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  • Fremantle Alliance Against Depression

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    4 months ago


    Over 20 stakeholders in Fremantle met last week to learn about the Alliance Against Depression framework and how it would work in their community. There was diversity in representation across the four pillars, meeting one of the first recommendations in the AAD Handbook.

    The commitment and urgency for a local Alliance was apparent in how everyone came to the table in a supportive and constructive way. Early in the discussions it was identified a local coordinator was needed to get this off the ground.

    It was obvious AAD was in line with what most people were already doing. This led...


    Over 20 stakeholders in Fremantle met last week to learn about the Alliance Against Depression framework and how it would work in their community. There was diversity in representation across the four pillars, meeting one of the first recommendations in the AAD Handbook.

    The commitment and urgency for a local Alliance was apparent in how everyone came to the table in a supportive and constructive way. Early in the discussions it was identified a local coordinator was needed to get this off the ground.

    It was obvious AAD was in line with what most people were already doing. This led to the agreed approach of resourcing the coordinator role as a collective. We saw a commitment to work towards embedding AAD into existing positions at various organisations. Each organisation plans to take turns leading the coordination in 4-6 month blocks.

    This is a fantastic example of a local community getting behind the AAD framework. This collaborative attitude will be integral to the future and commitment within Fremantle. The Fremantle community is full off passion, drive and creativity and we can't wait to go on this journey with them.

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  • Beginning of an exciting collaboration with Europe

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    6 months ago

    WA Primary Health Alliance has been a member with the EAAD since 2017 and launched the AAD Coordination Centre in 2019. We have loved learning from the team in Liepzig, Germany and are excited to be working with them on a solution to better connect all EAAD members across the world. There are currently 14 National Chapters across the globe in Europe, Canada, Australia and Chile. It is a beautiful thing to see so many different countries working together towards a similar goal.

    WA Primary Health Alliance has been a member with the EAAD since 2017 and launched the AAD Coordination Centre in 2019. We have loved learning from the team in Liepzig, Germany and are excited to be working with them on a solution to better connect all EAAD members across the world. There are currently 14 National Chapters across the globe in Europe, Canada, Australia and Chile. It is a beautiful thing to see so many different countries working together towards a similar goal.

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  • Murray AAD and Waroona AAD present at the 2019 WALGA Mental Health Forum

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    8 months ago

    Alliance Against Depression were invited to present a case study with the Shires of Murray and Waroona at the 2019 WALGA Mental Health Forum on Monday 11 November.

    In early 2017 WA Primary Health Alliance partnered with both Shires to deliver a Aboriginal Mental Health program and Youth Specific engagement. This partnership was supported through community consultation.

    Mid 2017, Perth South was announced as a National Suicide Prevention Trial Site (SPTS) which includes Kwinana, Rockingham, Mandurah, Murray and Waroona. Out of the 12 SPTS Perth South was the only site to focus solely on youth which provided the opportunity to...

    Alliance Against Depression were invited to present a case study with the Shires of Murray and Waroona at the 2019 WALGA Mental Health Forum on Monday 11 November.

    In early 2017 WA Primary Health Alliance partnered with both Shires to deliver a Aboriginal Mental Health program and Youth Specific engagement. This partnership was supported through community consultation.

    Mid 2017, Perth South was announced as a National Suicide Prevention Trial Site (SPTS) which includes Kwinana, Rockingham, Mandurah, Murray and Waroona. Out of the 12 SPTS Perth South was the only site to focus solely on youth which provided the opportunity to continue the partnership with both Shires.

    The SPTS were informed by the European Alliance Against Depression and guided by the Peel and Rockingham Kwinana Steering Group (PaRK CRSG), an existing community group. The learning from this trial allowed WA Primary Health Alliance to establish the AAD Coordination Centre and support local communities outside the SPTS since July 2019.

    This presentation had us reflecting on all the initiatives out of these two communities and we are so proud of their achievements.

    Shire of Murray - Completing the Cycle

    The Completing the Circle project will engage with young Aboriginal people in the Shire of Murray, the Murray Aboriginal community, service providers and general practice. It will adopt a holistic approach that supports physical, mental, spiritual, and emotional wellbeing. Achieving balance in these four points of the Medicine Wheel leads to harmony and social well-being to address mental health issues.

    Key initiatives include:

    • Murray Community Support Hub
    • Amazing Race Pinjarra
    • Pinjarra Massacre Commemoration
    • Mooditj Wirrin Back to Country Camp

    The shire also won the Public Health Award at the 2019 Local Government Policy Awards and were finalists for two WA Mental Health Awards - Innovation for Change and Diversity.

    Shire of Waroona - Baldja Program

    The Shire of Waroona introduced WYLD Program, Waroona Youth Leadership Development Program "a holistic approach to Aboriginal Youth Mental Health"

    Key initiatives include:

    • zero2hero Sports Camp
    • Youth Mental Health First Aid
    • Cultural Camps
    • Clontarf Workshops and Mentorships
    • Monthly Engagement Activities

    Waroona have had two AAD community meetings with the first meeting seeing 17 people from 10 different agencies. Great example of the local support required for a community-led initiative.

    We look forward to seeing both communities moving forward and formally establishing their Alliances Against Depression.


  • Self Help and Support Groups Awareness Day

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    8 months ago

    On Friday 25 October AAD joined over 20 stall holders at the Perth Cultural Centre for Self Help and Support Group Awareness Day Expo hosted by Connect Groups. We discussed the importance of connecting the four AAD pillars in a community over a game of connect four…do you see what we did there?

    The expo was a great networking opportunity to link support groups into an existing Alliance and also provide them information on AAD should they want to start the discussion in their community.

    Connect Groups aim to connect the community through building Support Groups that aim to...

    On Friday 25 October AAD joined over 20 stall holders at the Perth Cultural Centre for Self Help and Support Group Awareness Day Expo hosted by Connect Groups. We discussed the importance of connecting the four AAD pillars in a community over a game of connect four…do you see what we did there?

    The expo was a great networking opportunity to link support groups into an existing Alliance and also provide them information on AAD should they want to start the discussion in their community.

    Connect Groups aim to connect the community through building Support Groups that aim to combat isolation and give hope for the future. Many of these support groups are related to depression and could be key stakeholder in a local Alliance.

    When you start your stakeholder mapping be sure to jump onto their directory and reach out to your local groups.

  • WACHS WA Rural and Remote Mental Health Conference

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    8 months ago

    October 2019 saw Albany host the 24th WA Rural and Remote Mental Health Conference which celebrated the theme "Moorditjabiny: Becoming Stronger".

    We are grateful to Professor Geoff Riley for his ongoing support and presenting with the Alliance Against Depression team on the first day of the conference. The 1 hour session was titled 'ID and Treatment of Depression in Primary Care and Alliance Against Depression' and drew on the content in the GP Training video which is freely available for local Alliances to use. The 45 minute video qualifies for self-directed learning in a GPs professional development plan.

    This conference...

    October 2019 saw Albany host the 24th WA Rural and Remote Mental Health Conference which celebrated the theme "Moorditjabiny: Becoming Stronger".

    We are grateful to Professor Geoff Riley for his ongoing support and presenting with the Alliance Against Depression team on the first day of the conference. The 1 hour session was titled 'ID and Treatment of Depression in Primary Care and Alliance Against Depression' and drew on the content in the GP Training video which is freely available for local Alliances to use. The 45 minute video qualifies for self-directed learning in a GPs professional development plan.

    This conference is a key event for stakeholders who care about access to mental health services and the particular issues facing regional and remote communities. It provides an an opportunity for mental health professionals from across WA to participate in information sharing, training, upskilling and networking.

    Very humbling to participate in this important conversation and we look forward to following what initiatives come out of our WA country regions.

  • 2019 Linkwest People. Place. Partnerships Conference

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    9 months ago

    Across 3 days representatives across 160 + Neighbourhood and Community Resource Centres located across WA came together to talk about the power of community.

    We were proud to take part and deliver an Alliance Against Depression workshop to provide participants a tool to engage with their community about depression and suicide. We had powerful conversations and each person walked away with one action they will take back to strengthen their community.

    We can't wait to hear some of the stories that come out of these communities.

    Across 3 days representatives across 160 + Neighbourhood and Community Resource Centres located across WA came together to talk about the power of community.

    We were proud to take part and deliver an Alliance Against Depression workshop to provide participants a tool to engage with their community about depression and suicide. We had powerful conversations and each person walked away with one action they will take back to strengthen their community.

    We can't wait to hear some of the stories that come out of these communities.

  • Rockingham AAD launches on World Mental Health Day

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    9 months ago


    The launch, opened by Reece Whitby (MLA, Baldivis) saw over 90 people coming together to be part of this initiative and share their personal stories while answering questions on gaps in service provision and their thoughts on how to improve treatment of depression. The feedback will be used to determine future focus for the Alliance.

    Among the speaks were people with lives experience, Youthovation, Youth Focus, Art Mindfulness for the Soul, Western Australian Homeless Advocate, Constable Care, Lifeline and the AAD Coordination Centre. It really saw people and organisations come together and not only showcase services available in Rockingham but...


    The launch, opened by Reece Whitby (MLA, Baldivis) saw over 90 people coming together to be part of this initiative and share their personal stories while answering questions on gaps in service provision and their thoughts on how to improve treatment of depression. The feedback will be used to determine future focus for the Alliance.

    Among the speaks were people with lives experience, Youthovation, Youth Focus, Art Mindfulness for the Soul, Western Australian Homeless Advocate, Constable Care, Lifeline and the AAD Coordination Centre. It really saw people and organisations come together and not only showcase services available in Rockingham but to develop a strategy as a united community.

    The Alliance now aims to meet once a month to connect local service providers and community members and, using the feedback from the launch, identify where there are needs that are currently not being met. The idea is to have a cohesive connection with service providers and community members that allows for a much better integration and knowledge about the services available in the community and better access for people struggling with depression.