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Pebble in the Pond

Pebble in the Pond

By Sam Stewart

Pebble in the Pond is a podcast that hopes to create a ripple of change for mental health. Listen in as we interview the most fascinating and accomplished people in mental health, from lived experience speakers through to researchers, academics and influential industry leaders. Hosted by the Australian & New Zealand Mental Health Association, we are committed to progressing the understanding of mental health for the benefit for all.
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Currently playing episode

S4:E09 | Jean Te Huia: The Link Between Colonisation & Māori Mental Health Inequality

Pebble in the PondApr 26, 2022

S5:E38 | Neavin Broughton

S5:E38 | Neavin Broughton

Neavin descends from the Taranaki region and many of the Taranaki iwi.  

Work wise, he provides Māori cultural support and advice to a range of organisations ranging from government to private through to community groups.  

With a background in education, health promotion and the Treaty of Waitangi he works on projects that are designed to inspire passion in peoples’ culture. Neavin is currently a board member of New Zealand’s Problem Gambling Foundation.  

In today’s episode we talk about revitalisation of language and culture, the value of culturally appropriate services and what Neavin is excited about for the future of the social and emotional wellbeing of Māori people.  

Welcome Neavin.  

Sep 26, 202332:43
S5:E37 | Dr Nicole Milburn

S5:E37 | Dr Nicole Milburn

Dr Nicole Milburn is a Clinical Psychologist with two-and-a-half decades of experience working with infants, children, adults and families in private practice, public mental health and therapeutic services.

Nicole’s vision is for a community that respects and values the perspective of all its members, where problems are identified early in life as well as early in the problem. Nicole’s work is trauma-informed with a particular focus on the experience of infants, whose voices are often overlooked or otherwise not heard.

Dr Nicole Milburn, thank you for an incredibly insightful chat and thank you for sharing your story.

Sep 21, 202335:09
S5:E36 | Dr Karen Hart

S5:E36 | Dr Karen Hart

Karen knew she wanted to be a social worker from a young age and has spent a career focusing on children and adolescents. Now as, Director of Operations – Clinical Transformation at Oxygen, Karen supports and enables the integration and efficiency of clinical services, programs and projects to deliver successful outcomes, in both an operational and strategic capacity.

In this episode, Karen touches on life as a social worker, and why it’s important to employ self-resilience and self-care whilst taking care of other people in times of need. We also speak about the challenges facing the sector right now, where the current areas of improvement lie and why collaboration is so important.

Sep 11, 202323:42
S5:E35 | Dr Brian McKenny

S5:E35 | Dr Brian McKenny

Dr Brian McKenny is the Clinical Director, Rural and Remote Mental Health Service, Barossa Hills Fleurieu Local Health Network - SA Health 

After having an interest in mental health whilst studying Medicine, Dr McKenny has extensive experience in psychiatry and became an early adopter of tele-psychiatry and traveling to rural and remote areas as a travelling mental health professional.  

Today we speak about the differences in service delivery between rural and remote areas vs the metro areas, as well as the demand and supply of services, attracting the workforce of the future, and the reasons why he thinks the work is incredibly rewarding.  


Welcome Dr Brian McKenny. 

Sep 04, 202323:31
S5:E34 | Pip Rae

S5:E34 | Pip Rae

Pip is an author, investigative journalist, radio presenter, podcast producer/host and content architect of ‘creative ideas all-rounder’.

After spending eighteen years in the Police Force, Pip left the force in 2011 to raise her children and work on new projects. She has spent years in recovery from PSTD, in which she continued her research in treatments for mental illness, advocacy for stigmas in society and in particular a focus on – the impact of insurance investigations on those with an invisible illness.

With her trademark activism and calm enthusiasm, Pip strategically unpacks the themes, topics and life changing stories of women and men who are looking to share life lessons and empower others using the power of their own voice.

On today’s episode, Pip talks about overwhelm and overload, the mental health of victims of family and sexual violence and how her own experiences help to shape her work, her writing and now her future.

Welcome Pip.

Aug 28, 202340:51
S5:E33 | The Hon Margaret McMurdo AC

S5:E33 | The Hon Margaret McMurdo AC

In 1991, the honourable Margaret McMurdo was the first woman to be appointed a judge of the District Court of Queensland and the Childrens Court of Queensland. 
Justice McMurdo was appointed President of the Court of Appeal, Supreme Court of Queensland in 1998. Her Honour was the second president and first woman appointed as a presiding judge of an appellate court in Australia. 
In 2001 Justice McMurdo was awarded the Centenary Medal and later appointed a Companion of the Order of Australia (2007) for service to the law and judicial administration in Queensland, particularly in the areas of legal education and women's issues. In 2006 her Honour was presented the Agnes McWhinney Award for outstanding professional contribution by a woman lawyer. 
Her Honour retired as President of the Court of Appeal on 26 March 2017. On 5 May 2017 Justice McMurdo was appointed Chair of the Legal Aid Board of Queensland.  
In today’s episode we talk with Justice McMurdo about her start in law, her incredible experience in championing change for women’s safety and justice and her more recent appointment as the Chair of the Queensland Women’s Safety Justice Taskforce.  

Aug 22, 202339:54
S5:E32 | Dr Clifford Lewis

S5:E32 | Dr Clifford Lewis

Clifford Lewis, PhD (he/him/his) is a Marketing academic at Charles Sturt University. His research focuses on Place Marketing; exploring LGBTQIA+ inclusion both within one’s community or a recreational context. Within this field, he has drawn on socio-psychological theories to explore how places and experiences can be made more inclusive for LGBTQIA+ people.  

Through his work he has called for a more nuanced and sensitive approach to research which considers the diversity encapsulated under the LGBTQIA+ acronym. He is passionate about using research to make the world more inclusive.  
Thank you to Cliff for joining us and speaking about the lack of visibility of mental health services in rural and regional communities for LGBTQIA+ people and the massive changes in education and awareness that could bring about big changes in the sector. 

Aug 09, 202327:14
S5:E31 | Dr Stephanie Kershaw

S5:E31 | Dr Stephanie Kershaw

Steph is a Research Fellow at The Matilda Centre for Research in Mental Health and Substance Use. Steph leads an innovative program of research and translation to reduce the impact of substance use.

Her research aims to improve the health outcomes for individuals, families and communities especially among vulnerable and disadvantaged groups.

In today’s episode we chat with Steph about: Cracks in the Ice, which is a National Online Portal funded by the Australian Government Department of Health to develop and disseminate evidence-based resources about crystal methamphetamine (‘ice’) for the Australian Community. Steph is currently the Project Lead at Cracks In the Ice – welcome Steph.

Aug 01, 202322:55
S5:E30 | Dr Eli Kotler

S5:E30 | Dr Eli Kotler

Dr Eli Kotler is a Psychiatrist and Medical Director of Malvern Private Hospital, an addiction and trauma hospital in Melbourne. As an adjunct lecturer at Monash University, he oversees medical students on their addiction medicine rotation. Eli has an interest in psychedelic-assisted therapies, and is the Australian Director of the Certificate in Psychedelic Assisted Therapies course (Mind Medicine Australia).  

In today’s episode we chat with Eli around the psychedelic treatment changes which are emerging in the addiction sector, his excitement for a more holistic and humanistic approach to mental disorders and the process he works through with his clients. 

Welcome, Eli.  

Jul 28, 202327:10
S5:E29 | Gus Worland

S5:E29 | Gus Worland

Gus Worland is a Radio presenter and TV personality. During an episode on his breakfast radio show, Gus shared a story about a close friend and mentor who took his own life. This opened up the calls from listeners who called in to share their own stories. The journey which Gus started led to him hosting a three-part mental health documentary series, Man Up and now Gotcha4Life, a charity working to prevent suicide and break the stigma around mental health issues. 

In today’s episode we talk about Gus’s personal experience, how he’s passionate about encouraging mental fitness and the fundraising efforts which drive him.  

Welcome Gus.  

Jul 24, 202323:14
S5:E28 | Michele Laurie

S5:E28 | Michele Laurie

Michele identifies as an Gumbaynggirr/Yaegl Nyami (Woman in Gumbaynggirr)-accepted on Bundjalung Country. Michele champions social justice and seeks to work hard to increase equality & equity for First Peoples. As a Targeted Early Intervention Worker with Bugil Wernbe TEI Program-Tabulam District, Michele leads with an Indigenous Feministic practice, authentic Aboriginal Leadership & Aboriginal Governance which self-empowers to show up with and for community.  

Today we talk about the challenges of the work Michele has been a part of, the power of Aboriginal people working with Aboriginal people and her passion for early intervention with children to help build strong families within the community.  

Welcome Michele.   

Jul 21, 202339:38
S5:E27 | Belinda Connell

S5:E27 | Belinda Connell

Belinda Connell has been a registered Social Worker for 25 years and has over 10 years’ experience in suicide prevention, delivering LivingWorks’ suicide intervention training in Australia and overseas. Belinda also served as a sworn Police Officer with the NSW Police Service and is very proud of her first responder family background.  

In today’s episode we chat with Belinda about the stigma around having conversations about suicide. We also discuss the LivingWorks programs which can empower people to learn the skills which could help someone stay safe, and the improvements which can be made to first responders and frontline worker mental health support systems. 

Thank you Belinda.  

Jul 18, 202327:44
S5:E26 | Louise Grant

S5:E26 | Louise Grant

With a Masters in International Development, a Bachelor of Social Work and a Bachelor of Social Science (Psychology) Louise is an inclusion engagement specialist with a background in facilitation, training and youth community development. Today we chat around empowered youth work, and what meaningful inclusive engagement with young people looks like. Louise shares five tips around truly engaging and working with young people with honesty and sincerity.  

Welcome Louise.  

Jul 14, 202337:37
S5:E25 | Ashley Gordon

S5:E25 | Ashley Gordon

Ashley is the Executive Director at NSW Aboriginal Safe Gambling Services. 

An Aboriginal Australian from the western-New South Wales community of Brewarrina and a descendent of the Gamilaroi and Ngemba people, Ashley has dedicated much of his life and career to not only addressing the fundamental gap in services available to Aboriginal communities but also to dismantling the stigma associated with seeking help.  

Today we talk with Ashley around his belief that disadvantage in Aboriginal communities and the issues associated with it, including drug, alcohol and gambling addiction, can only be tackled through authentic engagement and collaboration with Aboriginal people. 


Welcome, Ashley.  

Jul 10, 202333:09
S5:E24 | Commissioner Dominic Morgan ASM

S5:E24 | Commissioner Dominic Morgan ASM

On today’s episode we speak with Commissioner Dominic Morgan. With over 30 years of ambulance experience across a broad range of roles in the areas of operations, clinical practice and leadership within Ambulance Services and the Financial Sector, Commissioner Morgan has an incredible amount of experience and insight. We chat about the recent ramifications of the pandemic on paramedics and what the future holds for the sector.  

Thank you Commissioner, and welcome.  

Jul 07, 202342:40
S5:E23 | Abi Cooper

S5:E23 | Abi Cooper

Abi Cooper is a Youth Mental Health Consultant and Lived Experience Coordinator at batyr.

Only 22, Abi has been working in the mental health sector for the last five years. By sharing her experience in help seeking and having a few missteps along the way, Abi is passionate about advocating for young people within the community who are looking for services. Today we chat around Abi’s personal story, the changes she’d like to see in the lived experience workforce and some of the power shifts she’d like to see within the greater sector.

Thank you Abi, and welcome.

Jul 04, 202335:15
S5:E22 | Dr Michael Salter

S5:E22 | Dr Michael Salter

Content warning. This episode does talk about child sexual abuse and child sexual abuse material.

Dr Michael Salter is the Scientia Associate Professor of Criminology at the School of Social Sciences at UNSW and an expert in child sexual exploitation and gendered violence.  
Michael applies critical and feminist theory to the study of complex trauma, with a focus on intersections with technology. Michael sits on the Board of Directors of the International Society for the Study of Trauma and Dissociation, and he is an advisor to the Australian Office of the eSafety Commissioner, the Canadian Centre for Child Protection and White Ribbon Australia. He is Associate Editor of Child Abuse Review and sits on the editorial board of the Journal of Trauma and Dissociation.  
In today’s episode we talk about policy failure, the lack of preparedness to recognise and respond to the impact of child sexual abuse and exploitation and a whole range of sector updates.  
Welcome Michael.  

Jun 30, 202340:21
S5:E21 | Rod Jeffries

S5:E21 | Rod Jeffries

Rod Jeffries is Wakenyahten (Turtle Clan) of the Kanyen’keha:ka Niwakitaro:ten (Mohawk) residing at home on the Kenhte:ke Nitewake:non (Tyendinaga Mohawk Territory, Ontario, Canada.)  
For the past 36 years, he has worked in the fields of substance abuse, healing, wellness and treatment as manager, workshop trainer/facilitator, program developer and evaluator.  

In the past three decades, his efforts have focused on the development & delivery of programs and staff for working with survivors of trauma, cultural oppression, sexual abuse and residential/boarding schools.  In recent years, Rod has become well known for his work on trauma, shame and lateral violence across Canada and in New Zealand. 

He is the chairperson of the International Indigenous Council for Healing Our Spirit Worldwide.  Rod’s involvement with HOSW began in 1991 prior to the First Gathering in Edmonton, Alberta in 1992.   
Thank you for joining us Rod.  

Jun 26, 202338:17
S5:E20 | Edward Mantler

S5:E20 | Edward Mantler

From starting in the sector as a psychiatric nurse, Ed is now Senior Vice President and Chief Program Officer at the Mental Health Commission of Canada.  Ed helps to guide and advise on best and emerging practices. 

We talk about the changes he’s seen over a long career in mental health, how stigma manifests within the sector, within mental health policy and within in the community. We chat around how the pandemic has shifted conversations and the new national standard in Canada, and what that means for the future of mental health in Canada.   

An episode full of incredible insight and thank you Ed! 

Jun 12, 202348:41
S5:E19 | Dr Julie Rowse

S5:E19 | Dr Julie Rowse

Dr Julie Rowse is the Owner of Healthy Mind And Soul & a Mental Health Occupational Therapist. 

Growing up in Ballarat with a very strong work ethic which didn’t cover mental health, Dr Julie Rowse came to her current practice after a burn out moment saw her questioning her career path and searching for answers when she had some unexplained health issues.  

A passionate advocate for a holistic approach to mental health with occupational therapy, treatment and flexible approaches, Dr Rowse joins us for today’s episode.  

Welcome, Dr Julie Rowse.  

Jun 06, 202337:20
S5:E18 | Michelle Rogers

S5:E18 | Michelle Rogers

Michelle is the Partnerships and Engagement Partner at Ngunya Jarjum Aboriginal Child And Family Network.  

Ngunya Jarjum  was established in 1995 by Bundjalung Elders and community members to address the crisis and need for more Aboriginal kinship and foster carers. Based on the idea to keep the children on Country, within family and immersed in culture.  

We talk all things from cultural identity, working with families with addiction, inviting children to be a part of the conversation with change and how some of the exciting shifts coming from the future. 

Welcome Michelle for this incredibly insightful episode. 

May 30, 202341:54
S5:E17 | Rev Dr Rex Rigby

S5:E17 | Rev Dr Rex Rigby

Reverend Dr Rex Rigby is an Indigenous Australian – from the Bigambul clan in central southwest Queensland.  Rex is the first Indigenous national head of a denomination in Australia.  He has served for eleven years as the National Superintendent of the Wesleyan Methodist Church of Australia, fourteen years as a District Superintendent, and over 17 years as a local church pastor. 

Today we talk about Rex’s story, how he got started in the church and his passionate mission for change, leadership and the challenges that come along with that. A truly powerful story and a hopeful one. Thank you Dr Rex.   

Our guest host today is Nat Heath.  

May 15, 202334:06
S5:E16 | Dr Mark Deady

S5:E16 | Dr Mark Deady

Dr Mark Deady is a UNSW Senior Research Fellow at the Black Dog Institute and the research lead within the Workplace Mental Health Research Program. He has over twelve years research experience in the field of mental health and substance use disorders. In this time he has worked on a range of projects at a coronial, epidemiological, and clinical level, completing his PhD at UNSW in 2015. 

With extensive expertise in the development of digital interventions, online service delivery, clinical trial evaluation, and workplace mental health. Dr Deady joins us today to speak about how the workplace is changing, what the research is saying and what are some effective approaches to support mental health in the workplace. Welcome Dr Deady.  

May 10, 202331:49
S5:E15 | Simon Holloway

S5:E15 | Simon Holloway

From being raised on a farm to living overseas and back to Australia to working in corporate - “growing” has always been a part of Simon’s life. When he partnered with friends Matt and Paul, the innovative and now, award winning raised garden bed company: Vegepod was born.  

Simon is passionate about therapeutic horticulture and through his own story with mental ill-health, he is a big believer in the power of growing to help people overcome challenging times.  
The benefits from getting your hands in the soil, nurturing nature and growing your own edible garden are only now being better understood. Here to discuss it all..  
Welcome Simon.  

May 01, 202335:19
S5:E14 | Heather Nowak

S5:E14 | Heather Nowak

Heather is a Mental Health Commissioner in South Australia and over a dedicated career, has participated in the development of the National Qualification for Peer workers.  
She’s also assisted in co-designing the resources for the Certificate IV Mental Health Peer Work and worked with the SA Mental Health Coalition to bring the qualification to SA. 
Heather is a strong advocate for consumers living with mental health issues at a local, state and National level. She was an inaugural member of the National Consumer and Carer Register, and now a member of the National Consumer & Carer Forum.  
On today’s episode, Heather discusses the role or peer work, the development of peer work training and her a-ha moments that have led to huge process and structure changes for the sector.  

It's wonderful to see Heather on the podcast – welcome Heather.  

Apr 24, 202339:08
S5:E13 | Cameron & Sharn Watts

S5:E13 | Cameron & Sharn Watts

Cameron is the Founder and Managing Director of Hemisphere East, a strategic counsel and government relations consultancy that helps clients in the tech and cyber fields engage with government and industry. 

After serving fourteen years in the Australian Federal Police, most of this time in leadership roles, and as an AFP advisor to the federal government.  

Sharn runs pre and post-natal yoga classes and together they are proud Fortem Australia Ambassadors. 

We talk about the challenges faced by first responders on the job, mental health within the sector Cameron’s journey with the AFP and PTSD and their journey together as a family. Welcome to you both.  

Apr 18, 202346:54
S5:E12 | Dean Bayliss

S5:E12 | Dean Bayliss

Dean is a proud Kamilaroi man and is the CEO of Healing Works Australia which is an Indigenous led and operating as a private social enterprise corporation that provides an array of suicide prevention services. 

Through his own journey of emotional wellbeing, Dean’s personal and professional experiences have placed him in a unique position to provide culturally competent, sensitive, and safe environments for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples who are at risk of suicide, or who would like to learn how to support someone who is at risk of suicide. 

Today we talk about Dean’s journey, community engagement, and the social and emotional wellbeing framework. Welcome Dean. 

Apr 10, 202343:11
S5:E11 | Lucas Finch

S5:E11 | Lucas Finch

Lucas Finch is the Global Head of Wellbeing at Xero - a cloud-based accounting software platform. He has won the Australian Psychological Societies Workplace Excellence Award for the development of an evidence-based Workplace Wellbeing Program. 

In this episode we talk through Lucas’s life changing silent meditation retreat, our modern obsession with busy-ness and achievement, and how Lucas jumped on board with Xero to develop a wellbeing strategy for their global team.  

Welcome Lucas.

Apr 03, 202328:25
S5:E10 | Rosemary Wanganeen

S5:E10 | Rosemary Wanganeen

As a Griefologist, Rosemary is a specialist.  She is a qualified educator & assessor, program designer and facilitator, loss & grief counselor, public speaker and a published author.   
The foundation to these abilities derives from her lived experiences of grieving through her personal loss and grief from 1987-1992.  During her personal grieving journey she set up the Sacred Site Within Healing Centre in 1993. 

Rosemary is a proud South Australian Aboriginal woman with ancestry and ancestral links to Kaurna of the Adelaide Plains and Wirringu from the West Coast. After the death of their beloved mother, Rosemary and six of her eight siblings became part of the Stolen Generation. It’s a traumatic story, but by reconnecting with her Spiritual Ancestors, Rosemary managed to survive the many years of loss, grief and fear. 

This episode talks about everything from Plato, to grief, to Rosemary’s personal experiences, what inter-generational grief looks like today and how we start to help Indigenous people thrive through griefology.  

Welcome Rosemary.   

Mar 28, 202341:20
S5:E09 | Eleni Psillakis

S5:E09 | Eleni Psillakis

Currently a Manager at Success Works, Eleni helps transform the lives of women effected by the criminal justice system. With a history of undiagnosed anxiety and depression, and an intense people pleasing personality, Eleni lived with anorexia in her late teens. After the breakdown of her twenty-one year marriage, a return of depression and some bad decisions, Eleni was incarcerated for 11 months. Eleni shares her story around eating disorder, depression, mental health within the prison system and what happens to women after incarceration.  

A truly insightful, raw and honest conversation and I thank Eleni for sharing her story.  

Mar 22, 202338:42
S5:E08 | Dom Barry

S5:E08 | Dom Barry

Dom Barry is a proud Pitjantjatjara Yankunytjatjara man from the remote community of Kaltjiti (Fregon) in the Anangu Pitjantjatjara Yankunytjatjara (APY) Lands, and a former professional AFL player, playing for the Melbourne Football Club and the Port Adelaide Football Club. Dom shares his story about moving from Alice Springs to Melbourne as a teenager, boarding at Ballarat and starting his professional career.

On today’s episode we discuss Dom’s journey, his ideas about continuing education and wellbeing for Indigenous children and Dom shares some insights on how First Nations people approach, treat and heal mental ill health and what being on country means to Indigenous people. Thank you to Dom for sharing so much in this episode.

Mar 14, 202331:08
S5:E07 | Dr Ben Hamer

S5:E07 | Dr Ben Hamer

On today’s episode we talk with Dr Ben Hamer, one of the leading voices on the future of work. Ben is Doctor of Public Administration, which included time spent as a Visiting Scholar at Yale University, and is an Adjunct Fellow for Swinburne University’s Centre for the New Workforce. Ben leads the future of work market for PwC Australia and is on the Board of the Australian HR Institute (AHRI).

We discuss how the pandemic is still creating waves in workplaces across Australia, how current trends and future predictions may affect workplaces, employees and employers. I thoroughly enjoyed this fascinating conversation and hope you enjoy.

Welcome Ben.

Feb 27, 202342:09
S5:E06 | Geraldine Bilston

S5:E06 | Geraldine Bilston

Geraldine is a professional consultant and victim-survivor of family violence.

Geraldine was appointed as the Deputy Chair of the Victim Survivors Advisory Council in May 2020 and she sits across a number of consulting and advisory boards including the Mornington Peninsula Primary Prevention Collaboration and White Ribbon National Advisory Council.

On today’s episode Geraldine shares details on her upbringing, her personal story and Wisdom in Practice - a reverse mentoring program. Geraldine talks about how lived experience and professionalism partner together and work along side each other to create systemic responses that meet the needs of the people who use them.

Thank you for sharing your story so honestly Geraldine and welcome to the podcast.

Feb 21, 202324:18
S5:E05 | Taimi Allan

S5:E05 | Taimi Allan

Taimi is the Tumu Whakarae (Director) at Ember Innovations and is a board member of Te Hiringa Mahara Mental Health and Wellbeing Commission of Aotearoa New Zealand. Starting her career as an air hostess with Ansett and Qantas, Taimi has become one of the leading minds in the mental health sector. With over 17 years experience in mental health and addiction services, e-Health, Suicide prevention, Leadership service and programme design and implementation Taimi is uniquely qualified to share her thoughts on the landscape of mental health services now and the value people with lived experience bring to the table.

Taimi is a firm believer that if you have a great idea the world should know about it and that experiences enable (not disable) people to innovate. It was a great pleasure to sit down for this discussion with Taimi and I hope you enjoy the episode.

Welcome Taimi Allan.

Feb 14, 202342:27
S5:E04 | Jack Buckskin

S5:E04 | Jack Buckskin

On today’s episode we talk with Jack Buckskin, a proud Kaurna and Narrunga man.

Jack tells the story of his family’s background and how after grasping the Kaurna language, he’s continued to become a teacher and leading authority on this traditional South Australian language. During our episode, we talk about Jack’s passion for the language and how dedicated he is to lifting the profile of cultural language in South Australia.

Welcome Jack.

Feb 07, 202339:14
S5:E03 | Karen Gallagher

S5:E03 | Karen Gallagher

Karen is a seasoned director in transformation, stakeholder engagement, human centred design, communications, and business strategy. She’s also the Partnerships Director at Today, which is a strategic design agency focused on purpose-based, problem solving projects.

In this episode, Karen talks about the process and facilitation of Co-Design, the resources needed and the roles and responsibilities of a Co-Design project and how the organizational support to help the planning stage move forward is so important. We learn the skills behind the design of a co-design project, how structure and process go hand in hand with the organizational support and each are equally essential to move teams and ideas forward.

Enjoy listening to this interesting episode with Karen now.

Feb 01, 202337:54
S5:E02 | Angela Martin

S5:E02 | Angela Martin

Dr Angela Martin is the founder and Principal Consultant of Pracademia.

Angela holds current part-time and honorary Professorial appointments with the Menzies Institute for Medical Research and the College of Business and Economics, University of Tasmania.

On today’s episode we look back at the last 20 years Angela has spent working in the workplace mental health sector, how employers and employees awareness around workplace mental health has grown and developed and the changes around stigma and conversations in the workplace around mental health.

We chat about the now and the future and touch on National Workplace Initiative, which is an exciting workplace mental health initiative.

Welcome Angela.

Jan 24, 202334:56
S5:E01 | Hayley Foster

S5:E01 | Hayley Foster

With 20 years' experience in the community, health, justice and corporate sectors principally in the areas of sexual, domestic and family violence policy, practice and law reform Hayley Foster is a passionate leader in the family and domestic violence sector.

CEO of Full Stop Australia, Hayley chats with us today about how her wide scope of experience has solidified her commitment to making systemic changes, her hopes for the future of the sector and the cultural shifts which are taking place. Hayley discusses her current role with Full Stop, and passionately explains what the National Plan means for the sector.

Jan 17, 202342:51
S4:E43 | Dr Lyndon Reilly: Addressing the Social and Emotional Well Being of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Men

S4:E43 | Dr Lyndon Reilly: Addressing the Social and Emotional Well Being of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Men

On today’s episode of Pebble in the Pond we chat with Lyndon Reilly. Lyndon is a Badtjala (But-chulla) Mununjali man. Lyndon has lived a majority of his life in the North Central Coast of Queensland Township Mackay.

Since 2012, Lyndon had been working full time for the Royal Flying Doctor Service (RFDS) Queensland Section as a Mental Health Promotion Officers. Currently, Lyndon is employed fulltime at the University of New South Wales (UNSW), Discipline of Psychiatry, working on a MRFF funded Research Project titled ‘Enabling Dad’s, Improving First Nations Adolescents Mental Health, across five Far North Queensland First Nations communities; Doomadgee, Kowanyama, Aurukun, Hopevale and Wujal Wujal.

Today we dive into the research Lyndon’s currently involved in as well as the main challenges adolescent and First Nations men are facing today including role models, the education system and goal setting. We talk about the men’s empowerment programs Lyndon’s been a part of since 1994 and the impact seen in the community over the years. We also discuss about what needs to be done now to create real change for generations to come.

Dec 26, 202228:59
S4:E42 | Dr Joel Davies: Banishing Burnout: Practical Strategies for Protecting Wellbeing at Work

S4:E42 | Dr Joel Davies: Banishing Burnout: Practical Strategies for Protecting Wellbeing at Work

On today’s episode of Pebble in the Pond we chat with Dr Joel Davies, Psychologist and Senior People Scientist at Culture Amp. Joel works tirelessly to help people reach their full potential and his career to date has spanned across academia, organisational development, learning and development, and tech product development.  

Joel works with Culture Amp's APAC customers to design employee feedback strategies and derive actionable insights from the comprehensive data collected through the Culture Amp Platform. Today we discuss how the pandemic has affected employee wellbeing at both work (and home) and the current staff shortages.  

We also discuss the role that both organisations and employees play in supporting wellbeing, global wellbeing trends, the impact of wellbeing on organisational success, and the most common psychological hazards in the workplace.

If you run a team, are in the workplace mental health sector or generally want to know how to best support your employees, then tune in and listen up!

Dec 20, 202234:44
S4:E41 | Professor Bronwen Dalton

S4:E41 | Professor Bronwen Dalton

Today we chat with Professor Bronwen Dalton. Bronwen is the Head of the Department of Management and the Director of the Masters of Not-for-Profit and Social Enterprise Program at the University of Technology, Sydney. She is also a North Korea expert. In 2012-14 Bronwen was the National Manager, Research at Mission Australia.  

Bronwen was an expert adviser on the evaluation of the Commonwealth Department of Family and Community Services’ Stronger Families and Communities Strategy. Bronwen has also worked closely on anti-corruption as part of her role as policy officers at the Independent Commission Against Corruption and at the NSW Attorney General’s Department.

Today we talk about Bronwen’s varied background growing up in rural NSW then traveling to Korea and her formative career. We discuss how COVID rapidly accelerated the flexibility of work in our society, Bronwen’s current research into the viability of the four day work week and the employee and business outcomes of a four day work week. Bronwen shares the culture shifts which need to happen around a new way of working and what that looks like for the future of work in Australia.

Dec 13, 202246:13
S4:E40 | Professor Patricia Dudgeon

S4:E40 | Professor Patricia Dudgeon

Today we have the trail blazing Pat Dudgeon on the podcast.

We discuss with Pat how she started out in her studies, her motivations and the projects she’s been a part of. We discuss the big events of the last few years, the progressive ideas which have led to different models and programs as well as considerable change for the Indigenous community.  

Pat talks about the importance of connection to kinship, community and country. She shares how globally, Indigenous psychology is shifting for the better and how exciting that is for her. She shares how strongly she feels about the obligation to leave an easier path for the Indigenous generations to come and why doing things that make your heart happy is just as important.

Pat talks about her desire for what future care models look like, for both Indigenous and non-indigenous people.  

Key take away message: “Treasure your difference and your local connectedness. Serve your community in a way that makes your heart happy.”

Dec 05, 202237:08
S4:E39 | Chris May: Latest UK Developments in Data-Driven Mental Healthcare

S4:E39 | Chris May: Latest UK Developments in Data-Driven Mental Healthcare

Chris May – Founding Director of Mayden, the company behind iaptus, the world's most popular EHR for psychological therapies, is our guest on the podcast today.  Having worked in healthcare analytics for over 30 years, Chris is passionate about using the power of data to improve service provision and patient outcomes.

Today we chat about how the latest technology developments in the UK aim to positively transform the therapist and client experience, how mental healthcare can lead the way for healthcare as a whole, and why the Australian and New Zealand mental health services are in danger of falling behind.

Welcome Chris.

Nov 29, 202249:24
S4:E38 | A/Prof Chris Wilkins: Preferences for Different Cannabis Law Reform Options Among the General Population and Key National Stakeholders in New Zealand

S4:E38 | A/Prof Chris Wilkins: Preferences for Different Cannabis Law Reform Options Among the General Population and Key National Stakeholders in New Zealand

In today’s podcast episode we chat with Associate Professor Chris Wilkins from SHORE & Whariki Research Centre, the College of Health at Massey University in New Zealand about the preferences for different cannabis law reform options among the general population and key national stakeholders in New Zealand.

To provide some background, several countries including Australia and New Zealand are debating the future of cannabis policy. In 2020 a national referendum to legalise recreational cannabis use and supply (via the Cannabis Legalisation and Control Bill (CLCB)) was held in New Zealand, and was narrowly defeated.

We chat with Chris around the key factors in the defeat of the CLCB.

Nov 21, 202243:05
S4:E37 | Alistair Carmichael: Turning the post pandemic tide of employee burnout

S4:E37 | Alistair Carmichael: Turning the post pandemic tide of employee burnout

Alistair is an Associate Partner at McKinsey & Company and a leader of the People and Organisational Performance Practice. Alistair works with clients to transform culture, orchestrate and lead change, develop leadership and talent and reimagine operating models and organisational design. Alistair is a leader of the McKinsey Health Institute and one of the drivers of McKinsey’s thinking on creating mentally healthy and safe workplaces.

In this episode, Alistair chats with us about turning the post pandemic tide of employee burnout and the critical role and time for leaders. Alistair shares insights from what McKinsey is seeing in Australia and around the world, how work is and will change into the future, and what this all means for workplace mental health. He will share why and how, if we are to turn back the tide on employee mental ill health, leaders must act - starting today.

Welcome Alistair.

Nov 15, 202233:34
S4:E36 | Mary O'Hagan: Unresolved Challenges Within The Sector

S4:E36 | Mary O'Hagan: Unresolved Challenges Within The Sector

Mary O’Hagan was a key initiator of the psychiatric survivor movement in New Zealand in the late 1980s and was the first chairperson of the World Network of Users and Survivors of Psychiatry between 1991 and 1995. 

She has been an advisor to the United Nations and the World Health Organization. Mary was a full-time Mental Health Commissioner in New Zealand between 2000 and 2007. Mary is currently Executive Director Lived Experience in the Mental Health and Wellbeing Division at the Department of Health in Victoria.

All Mary’s work has been driven by her quest for social justice for one of the most marginalised groups in our communities and today she chats with us about the unresolved challenges in the sector.

Welcome, Mary.

Nov 11, 202231:29
S4:E35 | Kristen Douglas: Working with schools to identify and respond to self harm and suicidal ideation

S4:E35 | Kristen Douglas: Working with schools to identify and respond to self harm and suicidal ideation

For the past 10 years headspace Schools have been working across the country, supporting Australian schools across the spectrum of mental health literacy, suicide prevention, risk management, and recovery.

Kristen Douglas is the National Manager and Head of headspace Schools. Kristen joins us as today’s podcast guest to chat about the importance of a whole school approach in promoting student wellbeing. We also discuss the role of educators and administrators in preparing for and responding to suicide risk, attempts and suicide impacting schools.

As well as this, we chat about understanding the key components of suicide prevention and postvention work as well as how to mitigate against the risk of suicide clusters forming. Welcome to the podcast, Kristen.

Nov 01, 202245:58
S4:E34 | Sam Frost: Believe

S4:E34 | Sam Frost: Believe

Sam Frost is an Australian actress, media personality and author. First winning hearts after appearing on The Bachelor Australia in 2014, then starring in the very first Bachelorette Australia in 2015, Sam has been described as the Aussie girl next door.  

In 2015 she became a national radio host working alongside comedian and TV personality Rove McManus before joining the cast of Australian TV drama; Home and Away as Jasmine Delaney in 2017.

After more than a year in the making, Sam published her first book “Believe” with Hachette in 2022. With an undeniable presence and popularity Sam joins us as today’s podcast guest to speak about “Believe”; a mental health initiative for women focusing on depression, anxiety and the sometimes toxic world of social media.

Oct 27, 202243:15
S4:E33 | John Ryan: The Decriminalisation Debate

S4:E33 | John Ryan: The Decriminalisation Debate

In recent years, there has been increasing public, political and media attention around the world to the question of drug law reform. Jurisdictions across the Americas, Europe and the United Kingdom are debating and enacting reforms relating to cannabis and other illicit drugs. In Australia, too, the debate around drug law reform continues. But while some states and territories have decriminalised low-level cannabis offences, there appears to be little political appetite for adopting other models of reform or applying this approach to other illicit drugs.

But is decriminalisation an evidence-based approach? Should we decriminalise other drugs beyond cannabis? Here to explore answers is this week’s guest John Ryan.

John is a leader in public health whose expertise is widely recognised in Victoria and overseas. He is currently a member of the North Richmond Medically Supervised Injecting Room Review Panel and, in 2012, won a Churchill Fellowship to travel to the United States and study ways of improving public health approaches to drug policy.

As a former Needle and Syringe Program worker, university researcher and policymaker, John is deeply committed to promoting better approaches to substance use and leading Penington Institute’s work to create change for the better.

Stay tuned as John explores the challenges and opportunities surrounding the decriminalisation of drugs in Australia, and delves into the question; is decriminalisation an effective way to address problematic drug use?

Oct 17, 202234:48
S4:E32 | Antonella Spatola: Violence Prevention Education on a Global Scale

S4:E32 | Antonella Spatola: Violence Prevention Education on a Global Scale

Systems of violence are complex, and solutions require more than just physical techniques.

One holistic approach to personal safety is Empowerment Self Defence (ESD), an evidence-based primary violence prevention system that teaches individuals how to recognise and interrupt violence by listening to the intuition assessing their options, asserting boundaries, using de-escalation strategies and provides tools for a range of psychological, verbal and physical responses.

Survivors who have been previously trained in ESD recover faster, are more likely to report perpetrators and reach out for support. So far ESD instructors have taught over 7000 people including victims of trafficking, girls at risk, rural women, social workers, refugees, students, mothers, and daughters and more from all around the world.

This week’s guest Antonella Spatola is the Regional Manager for the Asia Pacific region with ESD Global, a non-for-profit organisation based in the US, dedicated to making the evidence-based system of empowerment self-defence (or ESD) training accessible around the globe.

She trains individuals and organisations in the violence prevention space to promote the principles of ESD within their communities, delivering training to the global community as a first-hand preventative method against violence.

Antonella has a Psychology, is a mediator in conflict resolution, a behavioural therapist for NDIS, facilitates workshops and schools, and is a coach for women with a history of trauma.

Stay tuned as Antonella informs me on the principles of ESD, it’s importance in the violence prevention education space, and how it can be used as a powerful tool for change.

Oct 11, 202240:03