To provide a strong, independent and collective
mental health carer voice for Loddon Mallee region.

Loddon Murray Mental Health Carers Network logo

Small town syndrome (stigma) for carers who live in rural towns is very real; they suffer in silence and eventually become a shadow in their own community.

In 2010 the LMMHCN was formed with facilitation and support from Bendigo Health Carer Support Services and Mallee Family Care. The LMMHCN had an objective of providing a connection with, and forum for, carers of people  living with mental illness.

The region that LMMHCN covers is large and extends from Mildura to Echuca, down to Macedon and across to Maryborough. This includes Bendigo and 10 municipalities in all. It is contended that this region of Victoria is the most poorly serviced for mental health. The vast distances, low population densities and extensive pockets of low socio-economic disadvantaged communities all combine to form considerable challenges in mental health care in this region.

The LMMHCN sought to connect with carers of people living with mental illness and help identify critical needs so they can be advocated for. The network also aimed to link carers to services that may be available and generally see that they are visible and have a voice in their community.

LMMHCN achieved a good deal in the period 2010 to 2015 by participating in local carer support groups, carer conferences and carer forums. LMMHCN provided input into various mental health legislative reforms. Housing was identified by the network as a priority issue and a significant study was commenced into housing for mental health consumers from a carer perspective ( estimated release - February 2017)

Carer Support Groups proved difficult to sustain. Those with mental health issues and their carers often endure a battle to "keep their heads above water", let alone activiely participate in a support group, no matter how beneficial that support may be. This formidable challenge has not deterred the numerous LMMHCN members doing great work across the region

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Loddon Mallee Region

loddon mallee region