Everymind has been funded by the Movember Foundation in partnership with The Distinguished Gentlemen’s Ride Collaboration to consult, develop, deliver and evaluate an online support program for families and friends of paramedics. The program will assist family and friends to support paramedics experiencing mental ill-health and/or suicidal distress and promote better mental health and wellbeing for themselves.

Paramedics experience disproportionate levels of trauma, PTSD, psychological distress, and suicidal behaviour. More than half of paramedics experiencing mental ill-health will not seek treatment or formal support. Families and friends provide most of the practical and emotional support and are therefore key to improving outcomes for paramedics. While rewarding, this support and caregiving role can have an impact on an individual’s time, energy, finances and emotions. These impacts can be reduced through the delivery of evidence-based programs and prevent the onset of mental ill-health and suicidality in family and friends.

Project aims
The main aims of the project are to:
1. build the capacity of family and friends in their role to support paramedics impacted by mental ill-health and/or suicidal distress
2. promote and support the mental health and wellbeing of family and friends.

This will be achieved by adapting the existing successfully trialled Minds Together program for families and friends supporting paramedics. The adapted program will be made available to family and friends and evaluated for accessibility (suitable online access), acceptability (paramedic specific) and benefit (reduced stress, increased coping, increased quality of life, increased social connectedness, improved mental health and wellbeing) for the support person which will have a positive impact on the person they support.

Family and Friends Reference Group for Family and Friends of paramedics project

Everymind is seeking to establish a ‘Family and Friends Reference Group’ for the project.

The purpose of the reference group will be to provide input and support the content development of bespoke information to be
included in the Minds Together program.

Everymind is specifically seeking:

  • Five members with lived experience who are, or were, supporting a paramedic experiencing mental ill-health or suicidal
    distress (please note the paramedic being supported does not have to be currently working, they can be retired/left the service
    or be on leave).
  • Representation from metropolitan and regional/remote areas.
  • Female and male family members or friends.
  • Participation in five meetings for two hours each over the two-year project.
  • Individual consultation via email or phone calls outside of meetings according to experience and capacity.

Expected commitment 
Members of the group will be asked to advise on, and provide oversight of, the creation of resources developed, ensuring that
they are appropriate, safe, and clearly represent the voice of family members and friends of paramedics. This may include
adapting existing content, advising on imagery and developing new resources such as information sheets and multimedia content
(e.g. videos).

Members of the group will be asked if they would be willing to participate in videos and/or podcasts. This is optional, and
choosing not to participate will have no impact on your contribution to the program.

Group members will also be reimbursed for their participation at meetings and additional remuneration if participating in videos
and/or podcasts. The first meeting will occur in February 2022.

If you would like to nominate or suggest someone from your network that meets the above criteria and would be a valuable
contributor to the development of the project, please contact Project Lead, Yohana Franklin directly via the details below.

Yohana Franklin, Everymind Project Lead
[email protected] or 02 4924 6927

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