Mental illness met head on – The Northern Daily Leader

Mental Illness met head on 
By Jacob McArthur

MENTAL health will be the talk of the town when the batyr herd makes its way to Tamworth next month.

For-purpose youth mental health organisation batyr has been holding “Being Herd” workshops across the state with the aim of bringing young people aged 18 to 30 together and empowering them with skills to talk about their lived experience with mental ill health.

Regional Program Coordinator Lucinda Nash said the workshops are focused on sharing stories of recovery and “smashing the stigma” around mental illness.

The batyr group recently held a workshop at the University of New England St Albert’s College, and Ms Nash said university-aged people face particular challenges seeking help.

“Only 23 per cent of university-aged people will seek help with mental health issues,” she said.

Ms Nash said, through the workshops, batyr hoped to boost that rate and get young people more confident in seeking help and sharing their story.

Batyr chief executive Sam Refshauge said relatable stories were a beacon of hope for young sufferers of mental illness.

“It is incredibly powerful for young people to hear relatable and positive stories about lived experiences of mental health, to know that they are not alone and to instil a positive message of hope,” he said.

Ms Nash said there was already a lot of interest in the Tamworth Being Herd workshops but said numbers were limited and locals were required to register before the event.

Anyone interested in attending batyr’s Being Herd program in Tamworth on April 2 and 3 can register interest at www.batyr.com.au/being-herd/