For World Mental Health Day it is timely to spotlight Film Construction’s recent work in Australia for the Mental Health Commission of New South Wales. This series of film vignettes are part of a digital resource kit designed to help organisations and health workers better respond to the strengths, needs and preferences of people in their communities.
In any given year, 1 in 5 Australian adults will experience mental ill-health. In these challenging times, more people are in distress and are being encouraged to reach out for help.
Using vignettes helps organisations, managers and frontline staff to tune in to what is happening for someone. It also helps them to generate ideas to improve the access, experience and satisfaction of people using their services.
The four films and one audio story feature composite characters, based on hundreds of research hours. They represent people in the community who have common health literacy, mental and physical health profiles.
Each character remains anonymous. Yet as they reflect on their experiences, their voices encourage us to listen deeply and consider the unique stories that each person in our community carries with them each day.
We learnt something too.
With much of our region still in lockdown, everybody’s mental health is being tested.
Says Leah Oram, producer at Film Construction: “We are lucky in so many ways to be in such a resilient industry and to work with a crew that can be very giving. This project would not have been possible without the expertise of the courageous and generous people involved. The Mental Health Commission of NSW, our crew, talent, locations, voice-over artists, camera suppliers, and our friends in Post Production. The hard work and creativity across multiple shoot days with seven locations, in trucks, on buses and on the streets.
“These stories provide a glimpse into the lives of five people. But, they also reflect something back about ourselves. The spaces we find ourselves in and the community we have around us.
“And we all learnt the lesson that listening is the essential first step to help.”
Need to talk?
Free call or text 1737 any time for support from a trained counsellor.
Lifeline – 0800 543 354 (0800 LIFELINE) or free text 4357 (HELP).
Suicide Crisis Helpline – 0508 828 865 (0508 TAUTOKO).
Healthline – 0800 611 116
Samaritans – 0800 726 666
Writer/Director: Perry Bradley
Producer: Leah Oram
Executive Producer/Photography/B-Cam: Belinda Bradley
Cinematography: Fergus Cahill
Audio: Radiate Sound
Editor and Grade: Alex Mitchell
Mental Health Commission New South Wales
Manager – Health Literacy: Tania Waitokia
Swinburne University of Technology
Strategic Research, Programs and Partnerships: Ranjit G Nadarajah
Centre for Global Health & Equity