Yes it is painful, however there are Voice Hearers and their supporters across Australia that have been actively working on developing a formal network in Australia. Some are in this email conversation that Lyn sent out.
Since 2013 I have been using a WordPress blog to engage interested people about forming a national; network across Australia.
It is with regret that I am writing to advise that the Hearing Voices Network Australia (HVNA) website is no longer live. Some weeks ago Richmond Wellbeing made a decision to take the site down due to little traffic reported and also due to a decision to no longer participate in the national scene here in Australia. Richmond currently remains funded by the Western Australian Mental Health Commission to run the HVN Western Australia (HVNWA) which operates as a program of Richmond Wellbeing (in a similar way that Voices Vic operates within Prahran Mission in Victoria). HVNWA’s website has also been taken down as HVNWA has been integrated into the Richmond Wellbeing site.
As many of you will know Richmond Wellbeing has a new CEO as of 12 months now and so new strategic priorities have been set.
Our thanks and gratitude remain strong and deep to our former CEO Joe Calleja who championed the HV work in Australia since 2005 till his semi-retirement in 2016. My role has been scaled back to focus more within the Western Australian scene, however, I am personally supportive of the Australian grass roots steering group which is working toward developing a national entity.
We invite you, as you find the time, to take down any links you have to HVNA.
Please share this information with relevant people who I may have missed or may not have their email addresses.
Please note I work Tuesday – Friday across all our services.
The experience of ‘hearing voices’, once associated with lofty prophetic communications, has fallen low. Today, the experience is typically portrayed as an unambiguous harbinger of madness caused by a broken brain, an unbalanced mind, biology gone wild. Yet an alternative account, forged predominantly by people who hear voices themselves, argues that hearing voices is an understandable response to traumatic life-events. There is an urgent need to overcome the tensions between these two ways of understanding ‘voice hearing’.
Simon McCarthy-Jones considers neuroscience, genetics, religion, history, politics and not least the experiences of many voice hearers themselves. This enables him to challenge established and seemingly contradictory understandings and to create a joined-up explanation of voice hearing that is based on evidence rather than ideology.
We are looking for people who would be interested in appearing in an educational documentary about psychosis. The aim of the film is to reduce stigma, and increase understanding of psychosis and how to manage it. The film is being made by Monkey See Productions(http://www.monkeysee.com.au/) for Menal Health First Aid (https://mhfa.com.au/cms/home) to use in their training programs for the public.
We are looking for people with lived experience of psychosis to go in the film. We’re looking for people who have insight into their illness and understand how to manage it, and are able to talk in an easy to understand way. People will be paid for their time.
Christine Mason, the film’s producer, made a series of 6 mental health films on depression, panic attacks, social phobia, Schizophrenia, Bipolar and gambling 15 years ago. Mental Health First Aid have been using these films in their training programs and would like them updated. The films have also been used internationally by psychologists, hospitals, universities, doctors, libraries, support groups, and the public. Christine is a registered psychologist with 30 years’ experience working in mental health.
When making her previous six mental health films, Christine found that people who participated in the film found the experience empowering. It provided an opportunity for people to teach what they have learnt, to be respected for their knowledge, and to use what they have learnt from their suffering to help others. We believe this film will be very useful in reducing stigma and educating the public.
The Australian College of Applied Psychology is offering a low-cost ($40) 7 week Therapy group for people who hear distressing voices.
The group was designed by a voice-hearer with many years’ experience working in mental health settings and it draws on the Hearing Voices Approach of exploring voice experiences, changing the relationship with negative voices, and developing personalised coping strategies to manage distressing voices and the stresses that trigger them.
The group is supervised by our very own Vanessa Beavan, an active HVNNSW committee member and clinical psychologist.
The Queensland Hearing Voices Community is pleased to announce the second of three workshops funded by the QLD Mental Health Commission (QMHC) Community Awareness Initiative and supported by Aftercare.
The second workshop ‘Understanding & Working With People Who Hear Voices’ is a 3 day workshop that will be held on Monday 28th, Tuesday 29th and Wed 30th of September 2015, at the Merthyr Road Uniting Church at New Farm.
The training will be facilitated by Amanda Waegeli and Ros Thomas. Amanda is a Peer Specialist and Independent Mental HealthRecovery Consultant who has gained mastery over her experience of voice hearing through Hearing Voices Groups and the Hearing Voices Approach. Ros is a mental health worker, who has worked for the last 20 years in non-clinical service provision. Both facilitators are highly regarded and well respected within the Hearing Voices Movement and will bring a wealth of knowledge to our workshop.
This innovative 3 day workshop looks both at the theory and practice of working with and talking to voices.
At the end of the 3 days all participants will have:
An understanding of hearing voices
Been introduced to developing Coping Strategies
Been introduced to the Maastricht Interview
The confidence to use the Victim to Victor Workbook
Been introduced to Voice Profiling
Been introduced to Voice Dialoguing
Developed confidence and awareness in working with voices
Developed a Toolkit for working with clients’ voices
Places are limited and participants are expected to attend all 3 days. Please see the attached flyer and registration form for further details.
It would be appreciated if you would circulate the details throughout your networks.
Please see below for more information and registration form.
Tanya Luhrmann, a professor of anthropology at Stanford University, poses for a portrait in her office at Stanford University in Stanford, Calif., on Tuesday, June 30, 2015. She acquired the artwork about 10 years ago. On the left is a painting called “Stigma,” about the stigma of mental illness, and on the right the painting is called “Laws of Nature,” about hearing voices. (Nhat V. Meyer/Bay Area News Group)
STANFORD — Voices heard by some schizophrenics are strange, angry and threatening. But others hear voices that are familiar, helpful and comforting.
Varying across cultures, these voices tell us something: What we believe shapes what we hear — and how we feel, according to Stanford anthropologist Tanya Luhrmann, whose first-ever cultural comparison found that Bay Area patients experienced more negative voices than patients in India and Ghana.