We’ve learnt through experience
Involving parents experiencing mental illness, their partners, children and carers in the planning, delivery and evaluation of COPMI materials is our priority. We know that first-hand knowledge and experience is necessary to ensure what we are creating is going to work.
We’ve found our partnerships with people with a lived experience of mental illness are highly effective and they are now a critical element of everything we do. Whilst we are continually working on how to do it better, we think we’re pretty good at involving people and we’re keen to share the strategies we’ve found so effective.
You may like to start by watching our video on how to involve people with lived experience of mental illness (often referred to as ‘consumers and carers’) in your organisation.
It is important to be organised and to develop policies, checklists and guidelines to support the work you are doing. The COPMI national initiative have a number of checklists and policies to involve people with lived experience of mental illness that you may be able to adapt to suit your needs.
- Checklist for lived experience partnerships
- Checklist for participation with children and young people
- Checklist for interviews with people with lived experience
- COPMI lived experience partnership policy
- COPMI staff selection participation policy
Youth participation encourages young people to have a role in an organisation where their opinions are valued. The following report and fact sheets by Emerging Minds (previously trading as the Australian Infant, Child, Adolescent and Family Mental Health Association-AICAFMHA) are targeted towards youth participation:
- Scoping project report
- Benefits of youth participation
- Challenges of youth participation
- A-Z of encouraging youth participation
- Guiding charter
- Supports required for youth participation
- Models and methods – how to involve young people
The Commissioner for Children and Young People in WA developed the Participation Guidelines for Involving Children and Young People.
- Consumer and Carer Participation Policy: a framework for the mental health sector (MHCA, National Mental Health Consumer and Carer Forum)
- National Standards for Mental Health Services, Standard 3: Consumer and Carer Participation (Australian Government)
- Commentary on consumer and carer participation in a national mental health promotion initiative (COPMI national initiative)
- The inevitable loneliness of personal advocacy (Michael J. Kendrick PhD, Kendrick Consulting International)
- Making space for families – Cumberland Hospital Family Room (Jen Voytas, COPMI National Lived Experience Forum Member)
Useful information for people with lived experience of mental illness
If you are a person who has a lived experience of mental illness and are involved in sharing the work of specific mental health organisations, you may find the resources below helpful:
- Starter kit for consumer-developed initiatives by Our Consumer Place
- Media and Public Speaking: A Mindframe Guide for Consumers and Carers
- Information for working with the media by SANE Australia