Good mental health and wellbeing are not only about happiness. They are the foundation stones for positive life choices, strong relationships, supportive communities and the capacity to cope in adversity. A growing body of research evidence shows wellbeing and resilience are not a matter of chance, but can be directly influenced by individual and community-wide strategies.

This is a 2015-18 priority because

  • We must not waste any opportunity to help people, families and communities build their own their capacity to live well. If we act on what we know we can, over time, reduce the number of people who develop mental illness and need extra support and take the pressure off our strained mental health services.
  • Developing mental wellbeing is a sound investment. It allows people to contribute socially and economically to their full potential.

Suicide and attempting suicide are the most devastating consequences of mental distress. We know suicidal behaviour results from interaction between many factors in a person’s life, including their social and economic circumstances and their culture and individual history. A wealth of evidence shows suicide can be prevented through strategies aimed at individuals and entire communities.

This is a 2015-18 priority because

  • If we make a clear commitment to rigorously understanding the causes of suicide and the best means for preventing it, we can act on this knowledge in order to save people’s lives
  • Some groups in our community are affected by suicide at much greater rates than others. This is an injustice that we have an obligation to challenge and remedy.

Language when talking about suicide

Beyondblue has some tips on how to avoid stigmatising terminology here.