The Recovery College is one initiative through the ongoing Tasmanian Mental Health Reform Program. The college aims to build mental health in our community through an education focus. College’s value the diverse skills, experiences and perspectives in our community and have a focus on recovery at an individual, family, community, and system level.

Community forums occurred in March this year supported by Flourish and Mental Health Families and Friends. There was great attendance, and they gave us an opportunity to start the co-design process.

People attending reflected the Recovery College model of being open to everyone including:

Community members
Community organisations
Families, friends, and parents
Peer workers
Clinicians

The main questions raised were:

Course and topics in the Recovery College
What steps will be taken to ensure the college is inclusive for everyone

People said what mattered to them was:

Taking an inclusive approach: locations, flexibility, operating hours
Engagement with the community
Straightforward enrolment processes
Being oriented towards how adults learn
Valuing lived experience

People said what mattered to them was:

Taking an inclusive approach: locations, flexibility, operating hours
Engagement with the community
Straightforward enrolment processes
Being oriented towards how adults learn
Valuing lived experience

Courses people were interested in incuded:

Understanding mental health
Personal recovery
Rebuilding after trauma
Living with anxiety
Getting into peer work

We also had some great course suggestions about debunking stereotypes, countering stigma and discrimination. It also highlighted an ongoing need for a course to learn more about the Recovery College.

Following the forums, we have put this learning into action! In June we are holding a series of co-production sessions, building the content for several courses with representation from all our stakeholders: consumers, families, friends, peer workers, clinical staff, and education providers.

We will share more as the Recovery College develops. For more information, contact Deidre Tranter, Mental Health Reform Program – tas.mhreform@ths.tas.gov.au – or stay tuned for the next Statewide Mental Health Services Reform update.

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