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Home truths about mental health in Australian communities: what we learnt about mental health from doorknocking conversations

Preliminary findings from the Assisting Communities through Direct Connection Project survey, Round Two
Community participation Community engagement Mental health promotion Mental health Social wellbeing Australia

In this project, teams of ‘People Connectors’ went door-to-door seeking to have conversations with people about wellbeing, mental health experiences, and support needs; relevant to themselves, their loved ones, and their communities and neighbourhoods. For more information about the ACDC Project and the effectiveness of the door-knocking approach, see the evaluation report, Doorknocking for mental health: evaluating a novel outreach approach for addressing mental health.

In the conversational setting provided by the ACDC Project doorknocking experience, People Connectors sought to lessen some of the potential stigma associated with talking about mental health by offering a caring, safe, and validating space. The conversation also allowed for diverse ways to approach the topic of mental health, for instance not need to stick to illness orientated concepts of mental health, provided a space for much a broader exploration of the other dimensions affecting wellbeing, such as the social determinants of mental health (employment, housing, safety, etc).

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