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Growing the minds of the next generation of emerging researchers at Everymind

1 September 2020

When you know better, you do better and for an institute like Everymind, which is dedicated to delivering world-leading prevention programs, there is no greater priority than investing in its research.

To continue this important work and contribute to growing the minds of the next generation of cutting edge researchers, Everymind has taken on four PhD students over the past year.

These students include PhD candidates Elloyse Saw, Bruce Nelson, Natasha Harding and recent addition, Andrew McMahon.

According to Everymind Acting Program Manager, Dr Sally Fitzpatrick, the PhD candidates will undertake important research around the prevention of mental ill-health and suicide for carers as well as small business owners and refugee families.

“The students will support research aimed at directly influencing practice and policy, while also helping to improve people’s lives,” Dr Fitzpatrick said.

Everymind tackles complex mental health issues and these students will focus on often overlooked groups to improve mental health care outcomes for them.”

Everymind PhD candidate Elloyse Saw, who just recently marked her PhD confirmation, is evaluating the Minds Together for carers online program developed by Everymind.

The program supports parents, partners and loved ones of people experiencing depressive or anxiety symptoms.

“People providing mental health support to their loved ones tend to identify as partners, parents or friends, not carers,” Ms Saw said.

“However there is a need to support these individuals because, as the literature shows, the role of supporting someone with mental ill-health be challenging and can negatively impact the physical, emotional and financial health of the support person.”

Former small business owner, Bruce Nelson began his PhD studies last year, examining the effects of adverse events, such as bush fires, floods and drought, as well as construction projects on the mental health and wellbeing of small business operators.

He said it was an eye opening experience to talk to people about their experiences and the strong emotions they still feel.

A veteran in the mental health field, Natasha Harding has just started exploring the factors that support psychological wellbeing among refugee families.

She said that refugees have often been through immense trauma in fleeing their situation, travelling to Australia and then settling here, but many show great resilience in the face of this adversity.

Her research will focus on these adaptive traits in order to inform future health and wellbeing.

Andrew McMahon is the newest PhD candidate to join Everymind this week.

Andrew’s research is focussed on supporting carers of a person who has attempted suicide, and will include evaluating a new online program for carers.

Dr Fitzpatrick said Everymind is pleased to support and mentor the next generation of innovative research leaders in the area of prevention.

“We have a really good mix of topics being researched by our PhD students and I look forward to working with these students to find solutions for improved mental health and wellbeing, and which have the potential to contribute to the development of new, cutting edge projects within Everymind.”