Welcome to a very special edition of the depressioNet Newsletter!|
A very warm welcome to all who are new to depressioNet and our Newsletter. This month we have not included some of the regular sections such as Research projects that need our help and ‘What’s On’, however you can find these at depressioNet.com.au or email the team@depressioNet.com.au and we will be able to help you find what you are looking for. Due to the current critical situation at depressioNet we are needing ‘all hands on deck’ to ensure that depressioNet is here for all people living with depression in the future.
"In life what sometimes appears to be the end is really a new beginning."
At the September depressioNet Board meeting the financial situation and future of depressioNet was discussed at length and unless we are able to secure the financial support being requested from the Department of Health & Ageing and at least 3 of the states for our dNet Centres Project, we will be forced to close our 24 hour Forums on the 15th October with no plans to re-open in the foreseeable future.What is the ‘dNet Centres’ Project?
This is the result of continual delays in receiving the support we have been working hard on for the past 5 months from the State and Federal Governments (as well as other sources) for the dNet Centres project which was expected to come through by October.
The dNet Centres Project consists of the creation of 6 new online 'dNet Centres', each of which mirrors the depressioNet.com.au internet site and 24 hour service and is specifically designed to meet the needs of a particular segment of the community. For example, the dNet Rural Centre will focus on the needs of, and solutions for, people living in rural and remote areas of Australia. The dNet Work Centre will focus on the issues for people living with depression in the workplace. Other centres include older people and helping people living with depression to return to work or to make the transition from ‘welfare to work’. All the dNet Centres will link from the depressioNet.com.au home page and will also be able to be accessed directly.
The dNet Centres Project is an exciting 3 year strategy that will:
- increase the level of service and benefits available through depressioNet.com.au
- ensure that many more people living with depression receive these benefits
- secure the long term financial sustainability of depressioNet;
- fully document the depressioNet model so that it can be easily implemented within other areas of health.
There are enormous benefits to people living with depression, our families & friends, workplaces, communities and federal and state governments. Within the 3 years, the capacity of depressioNet will increase to be able to provide information, help and 24 hour support to over 500,000 people each year. Visit our dNet Centres page for more information or write to admin@depressioNet.com.au
depressioNet is ‘an idea whose time has arrived’ and not one that the Board of depressioNet or Australians living with depression are going to let slide quietly by. The need for the unique nature of the 24 hour services depressioNet provides is too great within this country. The dNet Centres Project has been established in response to these needs. It is now ready for implementation.
The board is still very hopeful – perhaps even more so – for the future.
While our legal obligations force us to ensure that we are able to cease operations on the 15th October while meeting all our financial obligations, it also spurred all on with a new determination to do everything possible to ensure this does not eventuate AND that this is the last time we are in this position. We are determined to obtain the full support needed to end the struggle of the past 5 years and take depressioNet forward with pride – and sufficient resources – to realise its potential.
We have now launched a major media and political lobbying campaign that is being coordinated by the expert Team at Imago who are providing their services pro bono. depressioNet Chair, Sarah Cornally, and Director, Dr Rob Moodie, are available for interviews and some wonderful mental health experts Professor Helen Herrman, Professor Gordon Parker and Dr Michael Carr-Gregg have agreed to provide their full support.
With the work of the past few months behind us and forming a solid base to move forward and the wonderful support of so many ‘people like us’, we are confident that this is not the end of depressioNet, but the end of the struggle of the past 5 years and a bright new beginning.
Please join with us and add your voice to communicate the importance of depressioNet as a valuable, innovative, efficient and effective resource for people living with depression and related conditions!
HOW YOU CAN HELP!
Add your voice to the thousands of other Australians supporting the depressioNet
dNet Centres Project
- SEND AN EMAIL to both the Federal Ministers and your state Health Minister using the links provided at http://www.depressioNet.com.au/ourvoice.html expressing your support for depressioNet and the dNet Centres Project and asking them to urgently and positively respond to our request for financial support.
- Send the link to all your contacts asking them to add their voice to yours in supporting Australians living with depression through depressioNet.
The links on the http://www.depressioNet.com.au/ourvoice.html page will open an email with addresses and introductory paragraph to make it easy for you. It will take only a minute of your time to help obtain the vital government support needed.
Over the past few months we have been focusing on progressing the dNet Centres project and securing Founding Partners in Health from the Government, commercial and philanthropic organisations for the individual centres as well as the overall project. We have a number of businesses and philanthropic organisations interested and negotiations are progressing with these – slowly due to lack of resources.
Our first port of call was the Federal Department of Health & Ageing as their support for the overall project is crucial to its success. We then also approached the Victorian, NSW and WA state governments and the Federal Department of Employment & Workplace Relations as the dNet Centres project offers a wise investment in assisting people living with depression to remain at work / return to work / maintain productivity while on the road to recovery from depression. All states now have their proposals to participate in the dNet ‘community centre’ – for people with long term mental health issues.
The Victorian Government responded with a firm ‘no’ saying that there were no funds available. We are yet to receive firm responses from any other state or federal departments to the proposals we have submitted.
The time invested in progressing the requests for support from federal and state governments has diverted resources from securing the day to day financial support, however we had reasonably expected to have had a firm response well before now. The continual delays and inability to successfully communicate that the dNet Centres project offers a unique and wise investment in the mental health & wellbeing of Australians and secure the vital financial support needed has placed depressioNet in this critical situation.
With your help our voices will be heard and we look forward to sharing the very bright future which is now just around the corner with you.
Our very deepest thanks to all.
Late last year I suffered from clinical depression. I seriously considered suicide. I was surfing the net for a 'fool proof' way of suiciding, a way that does not look like suicide as I don't want to cause my family any further grieve. I have suffered from depression on and off for years and the last episode was the final straw. I just felt I don't want to go on any further.
On Christmas day, 2004 I was given a present - dNet. Thanks to dNet, I am still working full time and the best thing is I am still ALIVE and managing my depression. dNet is invaluable for both me and my family. I no longer feel alone with this illness and today I also have a purpose - to continue to be a dNet member and help others who are struggling and those in the community who have not yet found dNet.
One of the worst aspects of depression is the incredible sense of being totally alone in the world, that there is nothing and no one that can really help, that I will always be like this. I lived in a state of permanent despair with only 15 minutes each week with my wonderful GP to look forward to. Then I found dNet – and hope. Any time of the day or night there is always someone there who understands, to provide comfort, support and encouragement to keep going… and something I never thought I would do again – yes, even to laugh again!
This month we have an article written by one of our dNetters, Robyn13, who shares her experience with depression and some important lessons she learnt from ‘listening’ to depression!
Here for you – 24 hours a day!
If there is anything that we can do to help you in anyway, please let us know: team@depressioNet.com.au
Leanne and the Team at depressioNet
Listening to Depression