Rural Alive & Well: focusing on people first

Rural Men and their families are often left to climb back through the gaps of systems and duly ignored and forgotten. I would ask at what expense and to whom!

Educational opportunities and resources for rural communities is an effective way in providing preventative measures for health and well-being particularly where suicide is prevalent. RAW continues supporting rural communities in Tasmania through years of drought, the collapse of the forestry industry, cuts to fisheries quota's, dairy, mining, and aquaculture Tasmanians continue to lose jobs, income, lifestyle and most importantly their health.

Rural Alive & Well with the support of our networking partners continue to play an intricate part in supporting rural men and their families through times where they are unable to cope independently. Many men have become fly-in fly-out workers to isolated areas in Queensland and Western Australia and places stress on their families. RAW's experience with client's who struggle with mental illness and who may be at risk of suicide is that they often are left undiagnosed, forgotten post treatment and not followed up with after care.

Clients invariably fail to attend appointments because of geographical, emotional and social isolate and visiting practitioners assume that their attending regularly isn't financially viable and stop visiting. RAW does not provide a diagnosis or clinical treatment following contact, rather, RAW provides intervention and emotional support with a our preference on referring to the most appropriate services and treatments available. An important element of RAW's work with clients is to ascertain any issues that may prevent individuals from turning up to planned appointments and then arrange safe avenues for clients in getting there. Rural Alive & Well is about helping people through the hard times, helping them build resilience while maintaining self-respect. RAW stands for supporting people rather than dwelling on the issues.

Garry Sharp, Manager of Outreach Team Rural Alive & Well Inc. will present at the:

4th Australian Rural and Remote Mental Health Symposium to be held on the 19 - 21 November 2012, Adelaide, South Australia.

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