Mental Health Community Coalition ACT Home

Celebrate Mental Health with the Launch of Mental Health Month ACT


Media release

3 October 2023, 9.30 – 10.30am

Salthouse Community Centre, Haig Park, Braddon.

Talent available for comment from 9.15am.

Each of us has mental health – a resource for living and thriving each day.

Beyond the typical headlines that cast mental health as a ‘problem’, we see mental health recovery and community as cause for celebration, The Mental Health Community Coalition ACT (MHCC ACT) is proud to celebrate mental health as it runs Mental Health Month on behalf of Canberrans.

“So often, conversations about mental health focus on the negative – on sadness, frustration, isolation, despair” says MHCC ACT CEO, Melanie Poole.

“But in our sector, we see something else. We see care, passion, dedication, resilience, recovery, community. We recognise that to be human means to have lived experience of both wellbeing, and of mental ill-health, at different times in our lives. We know that sustained wellbeing is possible for all of us when we can access the care, connection and belonging we need.

“Mental Health Month is Canberra’s opportunity to celebrate the ways we look after each other and our environment.”

ACT Minister for Emma Davidson, MLA, echoes these sentiments. “The great thing about Mental Health Month is it gives us the opportunity to raise awareness and understanding of mental health, reduce stigma and discrimination, and promote positive health and wellbeing,” says Minister Davidson. “We want to ensure everyone who needs help can access the treatment, care and support that they need to recover and live well.

“Taking care of mental health is just as important as physical health. Mental Health Month is a reminder to Canberrans that we all share a responsibility to reach out and support those who may be struggling with mental health.

“Mental Health month will be celebrated throughout Canberra with a range of community activities and events, I encourage everyone to get involved.”

There are dozens of events planned over October. The launch event will provide an overview of these. It will further feature a diverse range of speakers reflecting on mental health in the community.

Speakers (available for comment):

  • ACT Minister for Mental Health, Emma Davidson, MLA
  • Melanie Poole, CEO of MHCC ACT
  • Rose Beard, Consumer Representative. Rose has been a long-term member of the Mental Health Month Advisory Group. Rose chaired the Consumer and Carer Caucus and is an active mental health consumer representative through the ACT Mental Health Consumer Network.
  • Margot Franklin and Neena Mathee, Big Picture Academy students. Margot and Neena will reflect on youth mental health.
  • Matt Morrissey, Embrace Disability Group (also catering the event). Embrace Disability Group is a leading hospitality and catering business dedicated to creating meaningful employment opportunities for individuals living with disabilities.

For full details about Mental Health Month ACT, visit


Media contact: Erin Stewart, Media and Communications Manager, 0493 388 756 |

MHCC ACT is the peak body for community-managed mental health services in the ACT. Find out more about MHCC ACT at

Mental Health Month ACT is coordinated by the Mental Health Community Coalition ACT in partnership with ACT Health and the Mental Health Month ACT Advisory Committee.

Become a member