Welcome to NTMHC's latest e-newsletter 
1  December, 2022

In this edition...

The Northern Territory Mental Health Coalition is the peak body for NT community managed mental health organisations. We work in collaboration with a wide network of organisations, people with lived experience, their families and supporters across the NT. We work at both a national and local levels to improve the mental health and wellbeing of Territorians.
The NT Mental Health Coalition’s newsletter has updates, news and information related to the mental health and the community managed mental health sector. Please feel free to forward our newsletter on to interested people or organisations as we encourage new membership and subscribers.

To find out more about the benefits of becoming a member click the link below.
Become a Member

From the CEO

In my first year in the role of CEO we have focussed on creating, developing, growing, and establishing communication channels, networks and strategic relationships that are central to our work. We have reached out to all our members in the community mental health sector, seeking feedback on our direction and activities, and discussing what priorities are most relevant in the re-articulation of our value proposition to reflect the direction we are heading in.

With the support of our funding body and key stakeholders, the Coalition has made a strategic shift to focus on sector development, communications, and advocacy. A new team has formed to align with our new direction, helping us forge ahead with our renewed purpose. As a skilled, motivated, and supportive team, we are well positioned to achieve our goals while remaining adaptable and strategically focused. The development and ratification by the board of our key position statements allows us to articulate clearly what we stand for and what we are working towards. This creates a clearer path for the purposed of advocacy for NTMHC, our members, and community members across the NT.
Thank you for your contributions, engagement and feedback to the NT Mental Health Coalition in 2022. We look forward to strengthening our relationships with you in 2023 as the key to building a vibrant, collaborative and innovative community mental health sector in the Northern Territory.

Latest news from the Coalition

NTMHC AGM and 2020-2021 Annual Report 

On Thursday,10 November, the Northern Territory Mental Health Coalition held its Annual General Meeting at the Vibe Hotel at Darwin Waterfront. The meeting opened with a Welcome to Country by Mary Williams of the Larrakia Nation, followed by an Acknowledgement of Lived Experience by Anne Gawen, Chairperson for the Board.
A very special talk about the Uluru Statement from the Heart was delivered by Jade Ritchie, a Bunda Clan woman of the Gooreng Gooreng Nation, now living with her family on Larrakia Country. Jade presented an account of how her own experiences as an Indigenous woman have led her to become a strong and outspoken advocate for the Uluru Statement and Indigenous people. She highlighted the importance of an Indigenous Voice in Parliament in bringing about true equality and change for First Nations people.
Also in attendance was honored guest Dr. David Mitchell, the new Chief Psychiatrist for the Northern Territory.
Geoff Radford, CEO for NTMHC, presented a short summary of proposed amendments to the Constitution, with members voting in favor of adopting the changes. After presentation of the CEO's, Chairperson's and Financial reports, voting was held to elect members of the board, with 1 newly elected executive member - Dira Horne, as Secretary. Current members remaining unopposed include:
Anne Gawen - Chairperson
Judy Davis - Vice-Chairperson
Jade Gooding - Treasurer
A vote was held to confirm Ordinary board members Helen Day and Paul Royce. We are excited to welcome and congratulate our newly elected third board member, Pam Marwood.

Thanks to all who attended, and for the ongoing contributions and support of our board members. We look forward to another exciting year ahead! To view our 2021-2022 Annual Report, visit our website at:

The Darwin Mental Health Network

The Darwin Mental Health Network was reconvened in June 2022 after a two-year break during Covid restrictions. The network is emerging into a key point of contact for sharing, information exchange, and specialist subject forums.

The first meeting held in June was addressed by Amrita Dhuugga, the Team Leader of Therapeutic Services for the Australian Childhood Foundation in the NT.  Amrita talked about the trauma-informed work the organisation undertakes in Darwin and throughout the NT. The discussion was wide-ranging including an understanding of neurobiology and how trauma impacts on brain development, complex relational trauma and developmental trauma, transient and vicarious trauma, work practice, evidence, issues and barriers and how to implement your practice in informed, flexible, and holistic way.

Louise Page, CEO of Employee Assistance Service Australia (EASA) was the speaker at the 2nd meeting that was themed around Vicarious Trauma - how to recognise it, how it impacts you in the workplace and at home, what the risk factors are, and some practical self-help strategies. The meeting included activities that demonstrated some simple methods of self-help using the body.

The theme of the third meeting was Mental Health and Wellbeing in Older Australians. The NT Clinical Aged Care Team specialising in areas of mental health and wellbeing spoke about pathways of support available through My Aged Care and the importance of health professionals being aware of these services to support their older clients. Judy Ratajec (NT Clinical Leader Aged Care) and Mary Ingrames (Clinical Nurse Consultant) spoke about the work of the Older Australians Wellbeing Program, and Veena George spoke about the Psychogeriatric Services available in the NT.
All meetings were well attended by a range of people from different organisations, private businesses, and professions including mental health nursing, peer work, social work, occupational therapy, psychology, psychiatry, youth work, counselling, psychosocial support, and case management. The meetings are held face to face only every six weeks. The next meeting will be in December before we take a break over Christmas (details below under upcoming events).

Register to become a member of the Network through the Mental Health Professional Networks (MHPN) website and register to join the Darwin Network MHPN Portal.  Registration is Free. The portal also offers a great many webinars and forums on a huge variety of subjects.  If you wish to form a network in your local area, you can gain support, including some financial support through MHPN. 
For more information and any advice and support regarding starting a mental health related network, contact Max Taylor Sector Development Coordinator at NTMHC on (08) 8948 2246 or 0498 103 679.

Sector updates

Menzies mental health app for Indigenous youth launched

Menzies School of Health Research has developed a new mobile app that makes it easier for First Nations people to access information about mental health and wellbeing. The Aboriginal and Islander Mental health initiative (AIMhi) Stay Strong app is a colourful, user-friendly digital mental health tool co-designed by young people, Aboriginal Elders and clinicians, to support better mental health and wellbeing for First Nations Youth.

The app incorporates Pitjantjatjara language and Aboriginal English with plans to include other Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander languages. AIMhi Stay Strong supports service providers to have wellbeing conversations with First Nations people in primary care and specialist settings. The app was launched this month by Northern Territory (NT) Minister for Health Natasha Fyles and has been supported by INPEX-operated Ichthys LNG joint venture through their community investment funding program.

Professor Tricia Nagel, Head of Wellbeing Preventable and Chronic Diseases Division at Menzies, said in a media release “The phone app will make the AIMhi Stay Strong approach even more accessible, putting help easily within reach. This tool and the holistic strengths-based approach it brings to mental health is in use in lots of different services across Australia.”

Learn more about the app here

New resources to support child and family wellbeing

Emerging Minds have recently launched Emerging Minds Families – a brand new suite of resources that have been developed to meet the needs of parents/carers and families looking for information and support regarding infant and child mental health and wellbeing.

Developed in collaboration with family members with lived experience, practitioners and using the latest research, Emerging Minds Families offers practical, accessible, and evidence-based information including videos, fact sheets, animations and podcasts.
These new resources have been designed for practitioners to share and use with the parents and families they work with, or for parents and families to access directly. They are available for free and are intended to improve the mental health and wellbeing outcomes of infants and children in Australia by:
  • building mental health literacy 
  • guiding families as they connect with further supports 
  • strengthening family agency; and
  • supporting practitioners working with families. 
Click here to view Emerging Minds Families resources.

First Nations University Introduction Program now available at Charles Darwin University

CDU Darwin is offering a four-week full-time study and mentoring program, delivered on-site at the Casuarina Campus in Darwin. It is designed to offer a supported pathway to First Nation students in their preparation for future university study. In the January intensive the program will focus on preparing students who are
interested in further study in the areas of health, education and arts.

The program runs from January 16th to February 10th in 2023. Students attend on Monday to Friday, from 9am-4pm. There is no fee for this program and financial support will be provided for travel and accommodation for those living outside the Greater Darwin area. For more info, visit their website 👉

Free birth education sessions for diverse clients

The Childbirth Education Association Darwin now has some 100% Department of Health funded places available for diverse clients who are pregnant (limited spaces apply). These include CALD, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander, previous birth trauma, high levels of stress and fear around giving birth, postnatal depression with a previous baby and people with any kind of disability. Clients are seen on a one-on-one basis by highly trained midwives.

How a woman labours and births has a powerful effect on early parenting and how well bonding between mother and infant occurs. Research shows that when a woman understands her choices and is actively involved in the decision making process she starts her parenting journey from an empowered place whatever path her birth takes. 

For more information or bookings please contact 

Recovery Together - NTLEN's new peer education and recovery program

The NT Lived Experience Network has been funded by the NT Primary Health Network to develop and trial Recovery Together in the Greater Darwin region. Recovery Together is a free evidence-based program under development by the NT Lived Experience Network for people who experience mental health, alcohol, or drug related issues.

Recovery Together will be delivered by people with their own lived experience of related issues and recovery, who have been trained to deliver the program. Three programs will be delivered between October 2022 and March 2023 in Darwin and Palmerston in the evenings or on weekends to support participation by people who cannot attend during business hours. 

To learn more or register your interest visit the NTLEN website here

Mental Health magazine for mental health professionals

The Australian and New Zealand mental health association launched a new magazine, Mental Health Matters, in September, providing the latest mental health and allied health news, exclusive one-on-one interviews and practical case studies of programs and services that deliver tangible benefits to the community.

The aim is for Mental Health Matters to become an essential resource and tool that every mental health professional can rely on to provide key insights, refreshing content and important conversations in our industry. Click here to read their September issue.

Events, conferences and training

Darwin Mental Health Network End of Year Morning Tea

The Darwin Mental Health Network will be holding its last meeting and morning tea for 2022 with guest speaker Nancy Jeffrey who is the Advisor for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Social and Emotional Wellbeing for Emerging Minds. 

The meeting will be held on Wednesday, December 21 from 10am to 11:30am at the Nightcliff Community Centre (Pandanas Room around the side of the building).

The Darwin Mental Health Network has been meeting every eight weeks since it was re-established in July 2022. The meeting aims to strengthen professional networks, exchange information, and have a guest speaker each meeting on a particular mental health topic. The meeting is held in-person and we have a range of mental health professionals attending including peer workers, psychiatrists, social workers, counsellors, psychologists, occupational therapists, mental health nurses and others. 

Don’t forget to RSVP at MHPN Portal. Register into the Darwin Network if you are not already a member.

See You There.

Webinar: Non-medical supports and programs to improve older Australians’ mental health 

The Mental Health Professionals' Network (mhpn) is hosting a free webinar to learn how non-medical support programs for older Australians living in the community and Residential Aged Care Facilities (RACFs) can support mental health and wellbeing. The webinar is being held on Tuesday 6 December 2022
5.45 pm - NT time. 
This webinar is a Q&A discussion with a panel of interdisciplinary experts.

Learn more about the panelists here. For more info and to register click here. 

National NDIS & Mental Health Conference 2023

Community Mental Health Australia will be hosting their 4th National NDIS & Mental Health Conference at the International Convention Centre Sydney on the 20th and 21st of February, 2023. The NDIS is at a pivotal moment and a key focus will be on the recently announced NDIS review.

Full conference delegates can save $140 and concession (students, carers and those with lived experience currently unemployed) can save $80. Early bird registrations will close on Tuesday 8th December 

Click here for more info and to register. 

AADANT Drug and Alcohol Conference 2023: Together We Make a Difference


The Association of Alcohol and other Drug Agencies NT will hold their annual Northern Territory drug and alcohol conference May 23 - 24 in Darwin at the Darwin Hilton (32 Mitchell St).

This year's theme is Together We Make a Difference acknowledging the varied and important roles throughout the NT AOD Sector and how we can continue to collaborate more efficiently to provide clients with the best treatment and experience possible.

The 2023 AADANT Conference will explore research and evaluation of programs and therapies within Australia, new and innovative NT programs, collaboration and much more. Keynotes will be released before the end of the year, with registration opening next month.  

Learn more and get your early bird tickets here.

Grants and funding

Arts Project Grants applications now open

The Territory Labor Government has opened the latest round of Arts Project Grants applications. The grants are available to members of the arts community - including not-for-profit organisations - for projects that create and showcase arts; provide skills and employment opportunities; and increase community participation in the arts.

Grants of up to $20,000 are available in the following areas: 

Presentation and Promotion – up to $20,000 per applicant for projects ready to present, exhibit, distribute, or promote NT arts practice;
Skills Development – up to $20,000 per applicant for the development of skills, knowledge and experience including building digital capability;
Arts Development – up to $20,000 per applicant for the research, development or creation of new work; and
Emerging Artists – up to $15,000 per applicant for early career artists to develop new work, showcase or upskill, which may include project-ready internships.

For more information and to apply, go to:

Applications close on 23 January 2023.

Northern Territory Men's Places Grants Program

In July 2021, NT Government committed to developing a Men’s Places Policy for the Northern Territory. The Territory Government recognises the important role that men’s places can play in improving the health and emotional wellbeing of men and forming community connections and support networks. The Men’s Places Policy has been developed through consultations with Men’s Sheds and Men’s Places, Men’s healing programs and similar entities to understand how the Northern Territory Government is able to support the delivery of programs that aim to improve the lives of men in the Northern Territory.

To support Men’s Places the Northern Territory Government will provide $100,000 per annum to support Men’s Places Grants of up to $10,000 per applicant, to support a range of activities such as information sessions, skills development, health and wellbeing programs, education and peer to peer support programs, parenting programs, and equipment.

Funding is available to individuals and organisations. Applications close on 31 January 2023. 

For more info, visit:

Veteran Wellbeing Grants Program open for applications

The Veteran Welbeing Grants (VWG) Program is a targeted competitive program that accepts applicants annually and is an amalgamation of the Veteran and Community Grants program and Supporting Younger Veterans Grants program.

The objectives of the program are to:
  • maintain and improve the independence and quality of life for members of the veteran community by providing funding for projects that sustain or enhance health and social wellbeing
  • deliver services to the veteran community that build community capacity for the future that is not already provided by Commonwealth or state funding
  • expand on existing services offered to veterans in new regions within Australia or in the development of new services that will be offered in more than one location
  • raise awareness of the important issues faced by the veteran community.
Applications will be considered under grant categories: Stream A Small Grants (up to a maximum of $50,000 per grant) and Stream B Large Grants (from $50,001 to a maximum of $150,000 per grant).
Applications are now open and close 9:00 pm AEDT on Thursday 8 December 2022. Find out more on GrantConnect.

Other news

Self-care during the holidays

The holiday period can be a challenging and stressful time for many people. At this time, it can be especially important to pay attention to our physical, emotional and mental health. Connecting with family, friends, community and culture can be great ways to practice self-care. Checking-in with how you are feeling and identifying some activities that support your wellbeing is also important. We found some resources that we thought could be provide some helpful tips and also be shared with clients.

Please feel free to share your own resources and links with us, and we will pass them on through our social media through the month of December. Why not try one of these self-help Apps for good mental health:

MoodGYM: a free, structured five-module course covering information, assessments, self-help skills and exercises.
MyCompass: a free resource with a focus on building resilience and good mental health providing tips and exercises to maintain good mental health.
AIMhi Stay Strong: The AIMhi Stay Strong App is an innovative tool that addresses the mental health and wellbeing concerns of First Nations Australians using a cross-cultural approach. 
HeadGear: A free, easy-to-use smartphone app that guides you through a 30–day mental fitness challenge designed to build resilience and wellbeing and prevent things like depression and anxiety.

Gift donations for the youth in Don Dale

Danila Dilba Health Service are collecting items from the list below that will be given as gifts to the youth in Don Dale on Christmas day. Danila Dilba report having up to 45 youth in Don Dale at a time. 

If you would like to participate, please drop your gifts into the SEWB/Community services at Danila Dilba, Level 2 - 28 Knuckey Street. The contact person is Donna Heller or Jahmayne Coolwell.
  • Pens, Pencils
  • Coloured Pencils
  • Erasers
  • Clear Pencil Case
  • Colouring in books
  • Problem Solving books
  • Puzzles
  • Yoyo
  • Lego (large sizes only)
  • Soap
  • Face washer
  • Toothbrush
  • Comb
  • Sunglasses
  • Hat
  • Socks
  • Origami
  • Stickers
  • Chalk
  • Stuffed animals
  • Balls (tennis balls, bouncy balls, hacky sack, football, soccer ball etc)
  • Reading books
  • Sports towels 
  • Shorts 
  • Shirts
  • UNO,
  • Chess
  • Playing cards
  • Monopoly cards etc
  • Bracelet kits 
  • A note of encouragement from the donator :-) 


TeamHEALTH vacancy - Closes today
Child and Family Wellbeing Worker - Katherine - The Child and Family Wellbeing Worker will deliver strength-based case management and activities to children, young people and families in line with program guidelines. 

AnglicareNT - Closes 9th December
Case Manager Family Support Service - Anglicare NT is looking for an experienced Case Manager to provide intensive support to high risk families with children (aged 0 - to 18 years) primarily referred by Territory Families Housing and Community (TFHC.). You will provide Strength based, trauma informed and culturally affirming practical in-home support and child centered family focused casework to help create nurturing environments, build capacity and keep children safe and families together.

Newsletter submissions

To contribute content to our monthly newsletter, please email your information in the body of an email or as a Word document to Please ensure your contribution is no more than 200 words and includes all relevant dates, times, images, links and contact details.

Acknowledgement of Country

The Northern Territory Mental Health Coalition acknowledges the Traditional Owners of country throughout the Northern Territory and Australia, and their continuing connection to land, sea and community. We pay our respects to them and their cultures and to their Elders both past and present.


Acknowledgement of Lived Experience

We acknowledge those with a lived experience of mental ill-health. We recognise that we can only provide quality care through valuing, respecting and drawing upon the lived experience and expert knowledge of consumers, their families, carers, friends and communities.
Copyright © 2022 Northern Territory Mental Health Coalition, All rights reserved.

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PO BOX 157, Nighcliff NT 0814

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