Mental Health


Mental health is a state of well-being in which the individual realizes his or her own abilities, can cope with the normal stresses of life, can work productively and fruitfully and is able to make a contribution to his or her community.

Mental illness is a recognized, medically diagnosable illness that results in the significant impairment of an individual’s cognitive, affective or relational abilities. Mental disorders result from biological, developmental and/or psychosocial factors and can be managed using approaches comparable to those applied to physical disease (i.e., prevention, diagnosis, treatment and rehabilitation).”

Mental Health Month

October Mental Health Month for 2018 is coming up. The theme this year is:Share the Journey. Connecting with others is important for our health and survival. Research tells us that feeling connected, valued and loved by others gives us a sense of security, support, purpose and happiness. Close connections and good relationships with others allows us to enjoy the good times in our lives and helps us deal with the hard experiences we face…” – Mental Health Month Website



Our Mental Health Month Events for 2018:


Awareness Through Movement


– Understanding Your Child’s Brain Development During Years 0-5


– Understanding NSW Mental Health Services

Blue Fringe

The Blue Fringe Arts Awards originated as the Adrienne Brown Awards in 1992. Adrienne had schizophrenia and found relief through her love of poetry, the arts and music. After her death in 1990, her family created the Awards in memory of Adrienne’s battle with schizophrenia. The family recognised the valuable role that artistic expression played in their daughter’s life. From this, emerged the Blue Fringe Arts Festival, which celebrated it’s 26th year in 2018.


Blue Fringe Arts Festival is conducted by an organising committee which includes representatives from Aftercare, Neighbourhood Centres across the Blue Mountains, WSI TAFE, Ability Links and volunteers from the community and the artists themselves. Truly a great partnership!

BFA is held during October each year to coincide with Mental Health month events. It showcases work by local artists and crafts people, offering prizes for excellence.

Prizes are awarded to artists for their works in a number of categories.


Literature Awards Ceremony

Saturday 27th October

10am – 12 noon


Art Exhibition Dates:

Wednesday 24th October

Thursday 25th October

Friday 26th October

Saturday 27th October


Art Awards Ceremony

Saturday 27th October

12 noon – 2pm




Entries are open to anyone over the age of 16 years, (or if entering in the Youth category – high school age), with a lived experience of a mental health issue. Entry forms are available now at various locations around the mountains and entries close on 18th October.

All enquiries regarding Blue Fringe Arts Festival can be directed to Katoomba Neighbourhood Centre on 4780 1117, Springwood Neighbourhood Centre on 4751 3033 or via HERE. 



The Springwood Neighbourhood Centre runs a twice monthly group for people with lived experiences of mental illness who wish to use artistic expression. The group has done things such as card making, knitting, watercolours and so forth. For more information, see the flyer HERE.


The Dementia Carer’s Support Group is a bi-monthly support group for people who are carer’s of loved one’s suffering dementia.


Mental Health Line: 1800 011 511
Lifeline: 13 11 14
beyondblue 1300 22 4636
Mensline Australia: 1300 789 978
Kids Help Line: 1800 551 800
Domestic Violence Line: 1800 656 463
NSW Rape Crisis Centre: 1800 424 017
Suicide Call Back Service: 1300 659 467 (6 free sessions of telephone counselling)


Family and Carer Mental Health is a program run by UnitingCare Mental Health. Some useful information for carers can be found HERE.

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Interesting Articles

Becoming overworked and overstressed is a significant problem in Australia. Working long hours and overtime contributes to a poor work/life balance, which can have serious mental health effects. Here are some tips for starting to cut back on those long hours.