Aug 22nd, 2013 by TheMHS Bloggers
Paul Fitzgerald is the Manager of Wanslea Children Of Parents with a Mental Illness (COPMI) hwww.copmi.net.au. Jeremy Tucker, Beth Olsen and Alix Murray are Youth Consultants in the Wanslea Youth to Youth (Y2Y) Program.
Paul outlined that the Y2Y COPMI program works collaboratively with young people aged 15 to 25 years who share the lived experience of having a parent with mental illness. One of the aims of the program is to develop a framework for understanding the stigma of mental illness and implementing strategies for increasing young people’s stigma resistance.
The 5 Cs of COPMI outline the key strategies in working with young people:
- Competence – to be discerning in the conversations they have and how
- Confidence – to believe they have the ability to have conversations
- Comfort – to feel at ease during these conversations
- Curiosity – to be an enquirer
- Courage- to have the courage to have conversations
Paul advised that the model that guides the program is Roger Hart’s Ladder of Young People’s Participation: Hart, R. (1992). Children’s Participation from Tokenism to Citizenship. Florence: UNICEF ICDC.
Jeremy spoke about Unpacking Stigma workshops and provided a child’s quote from a recent workshop: “people that only own the house can go in and only my family can see what’s inside.” Jeremy then referred to the developed of a “Slow-moving Machine of Stigma” model including:
- The black sheep
- Social exclusion
The Y2Y workers played two videos created by the program. One of these videos won the Beyond Blue Award for Youth Week. Y2Y can be contacted regarding these videos.
Organisation website: http://www.wanslea.asn.au
Y2Y Program: http://www.wanslea.asn.au/family-services/y2y