Evidence-based multi-stakeholder approaches to youth mental health
Conference Date
12th -15th November 2019
CQ Functions Melbourne
Early Bird - Save $600
Book by 27/09/19
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Day 1 - Wednesday 13th November, 2019

Registration, coffee & networking

Welcome to Country address
Opening address from the Chair
Policy led approaches to youth suicide prevention
INTERNATIONAL KEYNOTE ADDRESS: What are the ingredients of best evidence-based suicide prevention practice for young people?
  • What are the most significant risk and protective factors associated with suicide and self-harm in young people?
  • Key learnings on the effectiveness of suicide prevention and self-harm intervention programmes worldwide
  • Essential ingredients in best evidence-based suicide prevention practice for young people?
Professor Ella Arensman
Chief Scientist
National Suicide Research Foundation (Ireland)
Examining findings of the WA Department of Health’s Youth Mental Health Sub Network survey on youth suicide prevention service effectiveness
  • Key learnings from WA Health’s survey of the effectiveness of youth suicide prevention services
  • Understanding how to improve the way services are designed and delivered through effectively assessing their effectiveness
  • Engaging young people with a lived experience of suicidality to engage in service design
Associate Professor Ashleigh Lin
Program Head, Mental Health & Youth, NHMRC Career Development Fellow
Telethon Kids Institute
Warwick Smith
Director, Youth Mental Health (NMHS)
Department of Health WA
Current trends in youth suicide and suicide prevention in Australia – reflections on the way forward
  • Current trends of youth suicide in Australia in international context and links to prevention
  • Australian youth suicide prevention and what could we learn from youth suicide prevention in other countries?
  • Potentials for collaboration between researchers, clinicians and lived experience for new interventions
Dr Kairi Kolves
Principal Research Fellow
Australian Institute for Suicide Prevention, Griffith University
Morning tea & networking
The National Suicide Prevention & Trauma Recovery Project
  • Sharing positive stories from across the nation on psychosocial trauma recovery led suicide preventions 
  • The power of early intervention – validating trauma with the focus on disabling trauma 
  • Youth suicidality must be responded to with resourced community care centres and home care
Gerry Georgatos
National Coordinator
National Suicide Prevention & Trauma Recovery Project
Lived experience frameworks for engaging young people in mental health & suicide prevention discussion
  • Helping young people to find their voices and advocate for change in mental health service design
  • Building the simple act of listening to the voices of consumers into business as usual for youth mental health and suicide prevention service design
  • Considering narrative and stories as an integral part of the dialogue around alternative methods of care for young people at risk
Layne Stretton
Director and Lead Facilitator
Roses in the Ocean
Tackling the critical challenge of indigenous youth suicide prevention
PANEL DISCUSSION: Empowering Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander-led approaches to youth mental health & suicide prevention
  • Fostering community-led solutions that tackle key social factors contributing to youth suicide prevalence
  • Overcoming key contributing factors to youth suicide such as racism 
  • Supporting families and communities to optimise child and youth safety and wellbeing 
Megan Krakouer
Southern Coordinator
National Indigenous Critical Response Service
Gerry Georgatos
National Coordinator
National Suicide Prevention & Trauma Recovery Project
Ben Abbatangelo
Deputy CEO
Australian Indigenous Mentoring Experience (AIME)
Naraja Clay
Consultant on Youth Mental Health Issues and Indigenous Mental Health
Networking lunch
AIME Mentoring – Fostering imagination for young Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders
  • Improving educational and self-esteem outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students
  • Positive mental health impacts of this empowerment focused program
  • The power of encouraging imagination for Aboriginal and Torres Strait islander kids and disadvantaged kids around the world
Ben Abbatangelo
Deputy CEO
Australian Indigenous Mentoring Experience (AIME)
Overcoming barriers to access & gaps in youth mental health services
PANEL DISCUSSION: Multi-stakeholder approaches to suicide crisis support – successes, challenges & shortfalls
  • Planning coordinated approaches to suicide crisis support across and between agencies
  • Mobilising an inter-agency crisis response with sufficient speed to tackle suicide attempts with urgency
  • Challenges around inter-agency coordination – how might they be overcome?
Dr Morton Rawlin
Vice President and Chair, Victorian Faculty
Royal Australian College of General Practitioners
Iain Macmillan
Consultant Psychiatrist, HYEPP Frankston Youth Early Psychosis Program, Orygen Youth Services & Adjunct Clinical Senior Lecturer in Psychiatry
Alfred Psychiatry & Monash University
Afternoon tea & networking
Culturally Safe and Responsive Services for Young People – Accessible and Inclusive Models of Care
  • Designing and delivering accessible and inclusive mental health services for diverse young people via an intersectional understanding of identity, belonging and wellbeing
  • Responding to systemic and structural barriers in service access and program participation via culturally safe and culturally responsive models of care
  • Removing barriers to access for appropriate mental health care & support for young people
Silvana Izzo
Service Development Consultant
Victorian Transcultural Mental Health, St Vincents Hospital
SP Connect: suicide Prevention through connection – A partnership program between Neami National, St Vincent’s Hospital Sydney, Prince of Wales Hospital & Royal Prince Alfred Hospital
  • Providing supported one on one care after someone is discharged from a hospital following a suicide attempt or suicidal crisis
  • Examining evidence around the critical importance of support following a suicide attempt or suicidal crisis
  • Lessons learned in the initial stages of implementation and future plans for program expansion
Ingrid Stefan
Service Manager, SP Connect
Neami National
Closing remarks from the Chair & close of Day One
FUNDRAISING DINNER: Join us at our fundraising dinner, in partnership with Roses in the Ocean

Bronwen Edwards
Chief Executive Officer
Roses in the Ocean

Day 2 - Thursday 14th November, 2019

Welcome, coffee & networking
Welcome remarks from the Chair
Innovations in Evidence-based Youth Mental Health Outreach & Suicide Prevention
Project Synergy – co-designing, building and testing technology-enabled solutions for mental health services reform
  • Using technology to connect young people with mental health services
  • Helping young people get the right care, first time
  • Bringing young people, health professionals and service providers together as equal partners in care
Tracey Davenport
Director of Research, Project Synergy Research and Development Group
Brain and Mind Centre, The University of Sydney
Ensuring cycles of self harm in young people don’t escalate to suicide – clinical best practice recommendations from RANZCP
  • Key points to note from RANZCP’s guidelines for best practice organization and delivery of clinical services for young patients who DSH to avoid escalation to suicidality
  • How can first responders best assess and treat people presenting after deliberate self-harm (DSH) and which treatments have been found effective to reduce repetition of DSH?
  • Clinical findings around the importance of after care following a DSH incident
Gregory Carter
Centre for Translational Neuroscience and Mental Health, Faculty of Health and Medicine
University of Newcastle
Hospital-to-community supports to prevent young people repeating a suicide attempt
  • Examining hospital-to-community supports for young people following a suicide attempt
  • Generating an evidence base for service improvement 
  • Translating study findings to practical recommendations for mental health workers, young people and their caregivers
Dr Wei Du
Epidemiologist and Biostatistician
Australian National University
Supporting trans and gender diverse young people – findings from Trans Pathways and their implications
  • Understanding risk factors for poor mental health, self-harm and suicide attempts for trans and gender diverse young people
  • Exploring resilience promoting factors supporting mental wellbeing in young trans people 
  • Raising the level of health professional education and awareness around gender diversity
  • Developing interventions that are safe and appropriate for trans and gender diverse young people
Associate Professor Ashleigh Lin
Program Head, Mental Health & Youth, NHMRC Career Development Fellow
Telethon Kids Institute
Morning tea and networking
Beyond the Emergency – understanding the complexity of young male ambulance attendances
  • What are the characteristics of self-harm related ambulance attendances in young males
  • Description of trends and patterns of self harm in young males with an ambulance attendance
  • Description of the involvement of alcohol, other drugs, mental health in self harm-related ambulance attendances for young men
Dr Debbie Scott
Strategic Lead Population Health Research
Turning Point
Mindframe – encouraging responsible, accurate & sensitive representation of mental illness & suicide in the Australian media
  • Reducing the impacts of mental ill-health and suicidality among young people through improving media representation of mental illness and suicide and capacity building among communities, mental health bodies government agencies and other media facing organisations
  • Tangible impacts of media representation of mental health and suicidality in young people
Sara Bartlett
Project Lead, Suicide Prevention - Mindframe
Social Supports for Youth Mental Health & Suicide Prevention
Improving risk sharing around youth mental health & suicide prevention outreach
  • How do we reduce social and contextual risks and increase protective factors for young people at risk of suicidality?
  • Holding the risk of youth mental health outreach and suicide prevention activities – which organisations do this, when and with what supports? When are risk-based service exclusion criteria excessive and when are they reasonable?
  • Ensuring that avoidance of risk doesn’t lead to a cycle of buck passing through a balanced multi-stakeholder risk sharing approach
Dr Peggy Brown
Senior Clinical Advisor
Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Health Care
Supporting suicide prevention through a holistic model of family centred care – NSW’s first non-clinical suicide prevention & recovery service (SPARC)
  • Moving away from a standard hospital paradigm where family members can only come in during visiting hours towards creating family support rooms where the whole family can stay with suicidal youth
  • Delivering quality care and support within a comfortable home-like environment
  • Skilling family members and other carers in appropriate youth suicide intervention and support
Rachel Green
Chief Executive Officer
Independent Community Living Australia
Networking lunch
Effective suicide postvention practice in secondary schools – as part of the Be You initiative
  • Be You is a national, federally funded mental health in education initiative designed for educators and school leadership staff that promotes mental health and wellbeing.
  • As part of the initiative Be You offers a national suicide postvention service for all secondary schools across Australia. This provides a range of flexible, integrated and targeted postvention services to assist secondary schools to manage the impact of suicide on students, staff, families and the community.
  •  This session will provide an overview of Be You while also showcasing specifically our work in supporting secondary schools after a death by suicide, including that effective suicide postvention has the capacity to be play a role in suicide prevention.
Rupert Saunders
Be You Clinical Senior Project Officer
David Wild
National Clinical Advisor - Be You
Bullying, Cyberbullying, Internet Connectedness & Youth Suicide Prevention
Examining the impacts of bullying as a driver of youth suicide – tackling this complex social challenge
  • How can governments, communities, organisations, schools and individuals best take action against bullying?
  • Cyber-bullying – the new frontier of childhood and youth bullying – how to best face this growing issue. To criminalise or not?
  • Creating safe, connected environments for young people with firm boundaries of mutual respect for everyone
Naraja Clay
Consultant on Youth Mental Health Issues and Indigenous Mental Health
Afternoon tea and networking
Does cyberbullying really cause suicide?
  • Is cyberbullying really an epidemic?
  • Does being cybervictimised lead to dying by suicide?
  • How can we prevent cyberbullying?
Professor Marilyn Campbell MAPS MCEDP
Professor, School of Early Childhood and Inclusive Education
Queensland University of Technology
Preventing youth suicide in Australia – a review of summit proceedings
  • Key messages emerging from the past two days of discussions
  • Implications for stakeholders in youth mental health and suicide prevention
  • Pragmatic take home actions and policy and strategy reform recommendations
Closing remarks from the Chair & close of Conference
Workshop A: Mental health first aid for the suicidal person
Tuesday 12th November 2019, 9:00am – 1:00pm

Learn the essential skills and acquire the knowledge required to safely engage with a suicidal person. This well recognised workshop has been developed under MHFA Australia guidelines, where consumers, carers, health professionals and researchers work together to agree what techniques and skills are best practice. All MHFA courses are evaluated, using rigorous scientific methods, to ensure they are having a positive impact.

Why attend this workshop?

  • Learn how to identify warning signs for suicide
  • Understand how to have a helpful conversation with someone experiencing suicidal thoughts and behaviours
  • Build the skills to confidently support a person in crisis

What you will take away by attending

  • Gain or refresh your understanding of the fundamentals of Mental Health First Aid
  • An improved understanding of mental illnesses, their treatments and appropriate first aid strategies for individuals with a mental illness
  • Learn practical skills to improve your confidence to provide Mental Health First Aid to someone who is feeling suicidal

Price 299 + GST

* Refreshments & lunch provided

Marisca Seinen
Master Trainer, Mental Health First Aid & Owner
CLIC Counselling and Consultancy
Register Now
Workshop B: safeTALK: Suicide alertness for everyone
Tuesday 12th November 2019, 2:00pm – 6:00pm

safeTALK is a half-day alertness workshop that prepares anyone, regardless of prior experience or training, to become a suicide-alert helper. Most people with thoughts of suicide don’t truly want to die, but are struggling with the pain in their lives. Through their words and actions, they invite help to stay alive. safeTALK-trained helpers can recognise these invitations and take action by connecting them with life-saving intervention resources.

Why attend this workshop?

  • Learn how to notice and respond to situations in which thoughts of suicide may be present
  • Build an understanding of how to apply basic TALK steps (Tell, Ask, Listen, & KeepSafe)
  • Gain skills around how to connect the person with thoughts of suicide to suicide first aid help and further community resources

What you will take away by attending

  • Powerful resources to assist you in being a suicide-alert helper
  • Hands on skill practice and development
  • An improved capacity to identify, assess and avert suicide risks

Price 299 + GST

* Refreshments provided

Michelle Graeber
Chief Executive Officer
Anxiety Recovery Centre Victoria
Register Now
Workshop C: Aboriginal cultural safety training with VACCHO
Friday 15th November 2019, 10:00am – 3:00pm

Cultural Safety is being acceptable to difference, having the ability to analyse power imbalances, institutional discrimination, colonisation and relationships with settlers. Cultural safety is about providing quality service that fits with the familiar cultural values and norms of the person accessing the service, that may differ from your own and/or the dominant culture.

The course content offered will further your understanding of how to work, and communicate effectively with Aboriginal people and will include the following topics:

  • Aboriginal people, communities and culture
  • Aboriginal Identity
  • Impact of history on Aboriginal people
  • Practical strategies to implement Cultural Safety into practice

What might this training do for you?

Participation in VACCHO’s cultural safety training may challenge you:

  • To individually analyse your own cultural values and reflect on their implications in your engagement with Aboriginal people
  • To modify existing beliefs about Aboriginal people
  • To actively prevent possible stereotyping, prejudices and racism within society
  • To incorporate new ways of seeing, valuing and understanding traditional and contemporary Aboriginal Culture

Each participant will receive a pack of training resources, as well as a Certificate of Participation supplied by VACCHO’s Cultural Safety Team.

Price $599 + GST

* Refreshments & lunch provided

Cultural Safety Team
VACCHO - Victorian Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation Inc
Register Now
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Key Speakers

Professor Ella Arensman
Chief Scientist
National Suicide Research Foundation (Ireland)
Warwick Smith
Director, Youth Mental Health (NMHS)
Department of Health WA
Dr Peggy Brown
Senior Clinical Advisor
Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Health Care
David Wild
National Clinical Advisor - Be You