AUSTRALIAN charity Roses in the Ocean have shifted their focus towards Griffith, beginning their designs for a mental health 'safe space' in the emergency department of Griffith Base Hospital.
The plans come courtesy of the NSW Strategic Framework for Suicide Prevention 2018-2023, and Roses in the Ocean have opened an invitation to the public for co-designers.
"Really the core values of co-design are to have the capacity for traditional experts and experts by experience to be working together," representative Carrie Lumby said.
"This is nested within a whole kind of culture change in our approaches to suicide prevention."
The safe space will aim to provide a non-clinical, warm and welcoming space where people will be supported by suicide prevention peer workers.
Riverina residents in distress will be able to access information and connections in the community that will help them to overcome their crisis.
"The key takeaway we have here is the idea of taking some time and utilising the support that Roses gives people, to set them up for success in terms of getting the right people in the room," Ms Lumby said.
"It's always good to get a diverse range of perspectives as we know, but lived experience is a broad church and in this case of a safe space intiative, you need to get people with a lived experience of suicidal crisis or attempt."
Roses in the Ocean are searching for people who have attended emergency department in distress, chosen not to when suicidal, or have supported someone in suicidal distress.
A total of nine contributors will be selected from Griffith, and nine more from Wagga Wagga.
Co-design contributors will take part in the project through Zoom sessions, focus groups, lived-experience sessions and combined sessions between October 2 and December 7.
Roses in the Ocean have envisaged significant interest in the opportunity and have said their selection of co-designers will be determined by diversity of demographics and lived experiences.
Murrumbidgee Local Health District have wholeheartedly jumped on board with the project, arranging for those involved to claim 15 hours of paid participation at a rate stipulated by MLHD.
If you or someone you know are going through mental distress, please reach out and talk to someone:
- Lifeline: 13 11 14
- Beyond Blue: 1300 224 636
- Griffith Suicide Prevention and Support Group: 1300 133 911