Mental Health Support

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One in five Australians aged 16-85 are affected by mental illness each year, yet many don’t reach out because of stigma. 54% of Australians with mental illness do no access treatment or services. Mental illness is common, not something to be ashamed about. Nearly half (45%) of Australian adults will experience a mental health disorder during their lifetime, so chances are your friends, or a family member know exactly what you might be going through. As we work our way through what has been a challenging year with the pandemic, it is more important than ever to stay on top of your mental health. Don’t be afraid to say you’re not okay. If you suspect are friend might be struggling, reach out. You do not need to be an expert, just a good friend and listener.

There are many resources where you can access information about mental health. Helplines, websites and government mental health services provide several support services for Australians. A few of them are listed above.


Young people

Close to a quarter (24.2%) of young people aged 15-19 report experiencing psychological distress. This is concerning as adolescents are five times less likely to seek help than those without psychological distress (36.5% vs. 7.0%). An increase of 5.5% over the last seven years means one in four young Australians are now experiencing mental health challenges, with young females (30%) twice as likely as young males (15.6%) to experience mental health issues. Sadly, an even greater proportion (31.9%) of young Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders report experiencing psychological distress. With youths aged 18-24 years featuring the highest prevalence of mental illness compared to any other age demographic, it is essential we recognise the stressors many young Australians face. Coping with stress, mental health, school and study problems, and body image are key issues of concern for young Australians. Most importantly however, never feel like you have to deal with any of these problems alone.

If you’re a young person and don’t feel comfortable talking to a friend of family member, there are free confidential support services available. They’re listed above



It is completely normal to be feeling anxious and stressed during the COVID-19 pandemic. As we work towards reducing the spread and achieving a ‘COVID normal’, we all have an active role in protecting both the physical and mental health of ourselves and fellow Australians.

  • Knowing the facts about COVID-19 can help alleviate some of these stresses and help support positive mental wellbeing, but too much can become overwhelming. Set a time when you will check COVID-19 updates and consider limiting how long you spend reading or viewing media related to it.
  • Talk about your feelings with someone, whether it’s a friend, loved one, colleague or mental health support service. Talking helps to lessen your distress.
  • If you are an essential or front-line worker and are feeling exhausted, detached or unable to concentrate on your job, talk to your supervisor about your concerns and arrange some time to recharge your batteries. Also consider rotations between high and low stress roles.
  • Maintain connections with those you might not be able to see face-to-face right now – checking in on your peers can reduce feelings of isolation and provide comfort for both of you.
  • Set a routine – routines are an important tool in helping us create a new normal. Whether you are working at home or an essential worker, consider what parts of your day are traditionally the most useful, enjoyable and helpful for you to feel the most normal.
  • Maintain a healthy lifestyle, including an adequate sleep, a good diet, and daily exercise.