A new podcast series is putting the issue of mental health in regional areas in the spotlight.

The rate of suicide in rural communities is higher than in urban communities.
The rate of suicide in rural communities is higher than in urban communities.

The rate of suicide in rural communities is higher than in urban communities and rural residents are much less likely to get help.

To address this the Centre for Rural and Remote Mental Health (CRRMH) and its flagship program the Rural Adversity Mental Health Program (RAMHP) together with journalist and producer Kia Handley developed a series of short podcasts that explore rural mental health issues.

Director of the CRRMH Professor David Perkins said that rural communities continue to face significant everyday challenges and it was important to acknowledge these challenges and provide support, information and hope.

“We hope our new podcast series ‘Let’s Talk’ will inspire and encourage people to strike up a conversation about mental health with colleagues, friends and family,” Professor Perkins said.

Producer of the podcasts, journalist Kia Handley said it’s a rare moment when she speaks to someone and they haven’t been touched by mental health problems.

“Since going through my own battles and those of my family and friends I know the power of hearing someone describe their mental health journey with their own voice, in their own words and that’s why this podcast was an important project for me to take on,” Ms Handley said.

“We like to think that stigma around mental health is breaking down, and in some ways that’s true.

“But there are still a lot of people who keep their experiences and their troubles secret, especially in regional Australia, and that needs to change.

“The more we talk about it, the more open we are about our experiences the easier it makes the journey for someone else,” she said.

Podcast topics include:

  • Talking to your General Practitioner
  • Disasters, Trauma and Your Mental Health
  • Mentally Healthy Workplaces  
  • Transitioning Back to the Land
  • Rural Suicide Prevention
  • Peer Work

“We encourage people to spread the word and share these important resources,” Professor Perkins said.

You can access the podcasts at www.crrmh.com.au/podcasts. 

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