The Cause

Mental health in Australia

We all know mental health in Australia needs to be better. And that’s our goal at Black Dog Institute.

Most of us will know someone experiencing mental illness,
or even experience it ourselves, at some point in our life.

1 in 5 Australians experience a mental illness each year

9 people in Australia die by suicide every day

50% of people living with mental illness will not seek professional help

Suicide is the leading cause of death among people aged 15-44

We're working to create better mental health

Through world-leading research, we’re working to provide better solutions and outcomes for everyone

As one of Australia’s leading Medical Research Institutes, we know there is no one-size-fits-all solution to the challenges that we’re facing together.

Our research findings give us hope for the future. And by rapidly translating our research into evidence-based programs, services, and products, that hope can become reality. We want the best information we have available to be in the hands of the people who need it. To help themselves, their friends and family, their students, their workplaces, and their communities.

We’re always searching for the next best thing, and we don’t stop there. 

We are privileged to work with some of the leading experts and partners in the sector to strive for better in everything that we do.

We know that through hard work, continuous knowledge sharing, and being led by the evidence, we can help to provide better mental health for all Australians.

Here's how we're creating better mental health for:

Health professionals, workplaces and schools

Providing training and support for Health Professionals

We offer evidence-based training and webinars for health professionals looking to expand their knowledge and skills in the area of mental health so they can support patients presenting with mental health conditions in their clinical work, and provide resources and support to help navigate burnout and maintain good mental health themselves.

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Building Better Mental Health in the Workplace

We spend one third of our adult lives working, so workplaces provide opportunities to share information about mental health and wellbeing. Backed by research, and delivered by experts, we offer a range of training workshops, eLearning programs and presentations to develop skills to build better mental health at work.

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Creating mentally healthy school environments

75% of mental health problems emerge before the age of 25, so we know that the years spent at school are critical in delivering prevention and intervention strategies. Our evidence-informed school resources, presentations, and programs have been developed to help young Australians grow into resilient and mentally healthy adults.

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Children, young people and adults, including emergency service workers and First Nations peoples

Developing and testing new and accessible mental health treatments

We offer a variety of evidence-supported digital tools, resources, toolkits, fact sheets and other information for common mental health conditions such as depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder, and suicidal thoughts, for adults, youth and children.

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Supporting first responders through the National Emergency Worker Support Service

This service provides confidential and specialised trauma-informed mental health support for emergency service workers and volunteers. Connect with our leading mental health specialists via telehealth or face-to-face. No referral, Medicare, or GP information required.

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Working towards being a trusted partner of First Nations leaders and their communities

Through our partnerships, we aim to elevate the voices of First Nations people and share their stories to co-design, inform, and deliver culturally safe mental health and suicide prevention initiatives, and to support the social and emotional wellbeing of all individuals and communities.

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The future: how we can make things even better?

Advancing research and clinical trials for treatment-resistant depression

Recent evidence has shown that a good portion of patients with treatment-resistant depression (TRD) can get better with neuromodulation treatments such as transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS), transcranial Direct Current Stimulation (tDCS), and electroconvulsive therapy (ECT).

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Advocating to Government to inform national, state and territory policies

Through the evidence produced by our research, we advocate to Government for policies, programs and interventions that will improve mental health outcomes for all in the form of evidence briefings, policy proposals, submissions, articles, and position

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Partnering with Primary Health Networks to provide better outcomes in Suicide Prevention

Our Suicide Prevention Implementation team turns leading research into best-practice programs, products and services. We work with Primary Health Networks, healthcare professionals and community members to implement effective suicide prevention initiatives.

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Better: a simple word that means so much 

It’s progress; a feeling. A positive word—a caring word.

It’s an ambition and a challenge. At Black Dog Institute, better is a word that drives our everyday.

We strive for better diagnoses and treatment, better knowledge, better research and better programs that lead to better classrooms, better workplaces, better community health and better pathways towards reconciliation and healing.

In short, we want to create better outcomes for people from all walks of life.

Through Science, Compassion and Action, we know the power of better.

We know from lived experience that better is what people want to feel—they want better mornings, better nights, better days. They want to be in a better mood.

We know that better can help prevent suicide, that better can be the beginning of a new hope. Our research is about creating a mentally healthier world.

Our population focus gives us better reach to help more Australians with the resources we have.

We know that coming together as a community can help us achieve better mental health for all Australians.

How 2023 funds raised were used

Funds raised by One Foot Forward participants in 2023 helped Black Dog Institute put ground-breaking new mental
health treatment, education and digital services into the hands of the people who need them most.

Here's what One Foot Forward helped us do in 2023: