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A very warm depressioNet welcome to everyone who has joined our Newsletter mailing list since our November edition. Through the newsletter we are able to keep you posted about what we are doing to improve depressioNet.com.au for Australians with depression and their families & friends.

AFR Awards
As we told you in November, depressioNet was selected as a FINALIST in the Australian Financial Review's Internet Industry Awards in the "Community and/or Special Interest" category. While we did not go on to win, attending the Awards ceremony reinforced what an incredible achievement it is to be a finalist. The other finalists and winners are all companies with large teams of people and budgets, and have been working on their sites for well over a year. For depressioNet to get there with a small team and small budget, in only 3 months is largely due to you, our visitors, for making depressioNet the warm and 'alive' site it has become.

The depressioNet philosophy...
The needs of the people that depressioNet exists to serve is the number one priority in everything we do at depressioNet. When considering content, the question we ask is "Is it of interest and/or help for Australians with depression and their families and friends?" Please keep letting us know what you need.

Supporting research into depression is directly in line with the depressioNet philosophy. We currently have 2 questionnaires for separate Australian research projects on the site with links from the home page. Research is very important to learn more about this illness and it's effects, from prevention through to treatment. The more people who complete these questionnaires, the more accurate the results and the more that is learnt and understood. Great if you can help out where possible. Ultimately it is people like us who benefit!

Online purchasing
We try to make it as easy as possible for you to access help and 'treatment' and so we include information about products and services that may be helpful. Wherever possible, we bring content and information within the depressioNet site to avoid having to send you off into 'cyberspace'! At the moment you can order relevant books through depressioNet via fax and email, and the Australian Company 'Open Leaves' are fulfilling these requests for us. Soon we hope to be able to make it possible for you to purchase these directly online, and will try to get access to as many other products that you have been asking about.

This month our story from well-known Australians is from a 'family & friend'. John McGrath is Chair of the Mental Health Council of Australia and has cared for 2 sons with mental illness for nearly 20 years. He shares with us his experiences as a father and the challenges he and his family have faced. It is a very open and honest and inspiring story. You will find it in the 'People' section of depressioNet.com.au. **If you know of any well-known Australians who have suffered depression or who have a family member or friend who has, and may be happy to share their experiences, please let us know and we will ask them.

What's Been Happening?
Gen has found more resources available for family and friends! We have information on all the 'Carers' Associations and resources around Australia. These are available within the Family & Friends section.

This month we have added to the 'alternative treatments' info with information on rTMS and research on St Johns Wart. If there is anything you would like us to find information about just let us know! It Also send us your comments and experiences with medications and treatments for us to share with others. Remember that we continually add to and improve different sections within depressioNet, and not all of this is included in What's New. There are often interesting news articles, additional medications, poetry and inspiration etc added. depressioNet is made to visit often! In line with our philosophy, there will be no commercial advertising on depressioNet and so we need to get creative about financially supporting the site to ensure that depressioNet can continue to grow and 'be there'. To this end, we are seeking corporate sponsorship from companies that understand what we are doing and are willing to support us in this practical way. Any ideas here are very welcome!

Monthly Article
Many of us wait until depression has us firmly in it's grasp before we do anything about it. By this time, many of the effects of depression make it harder for us to know where to go to get help and to find out the options available for effective treatment. The following has been put together from your feedback and questions.

Our sincere wishes for a warm Christmas and that 2001 brings peace to you all.
Leanne & the depressioNet team.

Treatment for depression... Where do I start?


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