The Western Australian Association for Mental Health (WAAMH) invited the public to submit abstracts as well as identifying keynote speakers to deliver engaging oral presentations and workshops, as part of the WA Mental Health Conference 2022.

The program offers thought-provoking audience discussion and activities to explore practical implications of mental health and wellbeing support in workplace and community settings. 

We have aimed to showcase a diverse and dynamic range of presenters and topics representing a range of viewpoints, experiences and research, to enrich the learning, expression of ideas and collaboration at the conference.  

Perspectives from people working in clinical, community, corporate, government, not-for-profit and academic settings, as well as the voices of lived and living experience are all featured in the program, from all areas around the state and country. 

Presentations will incorporate one of several of the trauma-informed principles (detailed further below), underpinned by sentiments of recovery and hope.

We were further able to group together common themes, similar topics and complementary diverse angles in the final session formation.

Additionally there will be a Wellbeing Room and Chill-out Zone thanks to the support of Helping Minds; exhibitor displays from our sponsors, art and music; and a stack of resources and information.

The conference provides an appetising lunch with river views, refreshing tea and barista coffee thanks to St John of God Raphael Services, delicious morning and afternoon treats, plus the Clough Networking Sundowner in the open balcony overlooking the oval at Champion's Terrace at the end of Day One.

Please note, some of the sessions, presenters or timings may be subject to minor change or adjustment due to potential factors outside of our control, as we near closer to the event, and this page and the Joyn Us conference online platform will remain up-to-date if this is the case.

Program streams:

1.  Safety (emotional as well as physical safety)
  • Boundaries
  • Retention of staff – i.e. people leave if they feel unsafe
  • Housing
  • Debriefing and supervision
  • Making peer work safe
  • Alcohol and other drugs (AOD) in mental health settings
  • Having better conversations about risk – referrals, expectations, assumptions – understanding each other’s context and why we might make the decisions we make about referrals
  • Creating safety for clinicians in their working environments
  • Zero tolerance – are there better ways to create safety for workers and people, and the tension between those who exclude on the basis of behaviour and those who recognise they must work with behaviours of concern
2. Trust – is the service sensitive to people’s needs?
  • Staff leaving because they feel unsupported
  • Building trust for peer workers within their organisations
  • Building trust between clinicians, NGOs and lived or living experience – trusting the relationship between the NGO and the person
  • Cultural safety
  • How to make staff comfortable talking to HR or wellbeing teams without feeling they are putting their careers ‘at risk’ from disclosure.
3. Choice – do you provide opportunity for choice?
  • Choices in recovery – individuals deciding what recovery is important for them
  • What choices are we going to give people
4. Collaboration – do you communicate a sense of ‘doing with’ rather than ‘doing to’?
  • Mental health and AOD – other examples of collaboration for co-occurring issues
  • Partnership tools
  • Embedding partnerships in governance
5. Empowerment – is empowering people a key focus?
  • Self-care by employees (so they don’t burn out); boundaries – power to set them
  • Employment in knowledge and upskilling
6.  Respect for Diversity – do you respect diversity in all its forms?
  • Cultural security and safety
  • Diversity – othering – and stigma (culture, background, experiences, assumptions)

CONFERENCE THEME: Working together: a shared purpose.

We recognise that a combination of factors, including roles, strengths, and supports within the mental health workforce and in the community, contribute to a person's overall mental wellbeing and recovery journey. Therefore it's vital they all complement each other and work effectively together for this shared purpose.


  • The conference aims to develop, strengthen and support WA’s mental health sector, so we can work better together in the interest of the community’s mental health.
  • It provides collaborative opportunities for people with lived experience, clinical staff and non-clinical mental health workers; offering the chance to share resources, perspectives and best practices.
  • The conference creates a physical and connected space to display strong mental health practice content for the mental health (unpaid and paid) workforce (and people whose work relates to mental health and OHS) to learn hands-on skills, training, development, based on recovery-focused, trauma-informed and person-centred models of care. 

Content will address practice issues such as:

  • Addressing stigma and discrimination
  • Co-occurring issues, including alcohol/drugs, neurodevelopmental disorders and psychosocial NDIS
  • Peer workers and building the lived experience workforce of the future
  • Looking after our workforce: recruitment, retention and skills development
  • Supporting and empowering those who care for others
  • Equipping community and workplaces with mental health practice skills and strategies for all
  • Utilising technology to offer long distance and remote support.