The Working Together: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Mental Health and Wellbeing Principles and Practice had its origins in the Australian Government’s commitment to improve mental health services nationally. The book was a key strategy to support Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander-specific initiatives of the Council of Australian Governments (COAG) mental health reform over five years. When we undertook the first edition it was evident that there was a lack of culturally appropriate resources to educate and assist mental health professionals to work with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people experiencing social and emotional wellbeing issues and mental health conditions across all life stages. Further, those resources currently used by mental health clinicians were found to have little cross-cultural validity. It is pleasing, however, in this book to see a number of Aboriginal psychologists and allied health practitioners writing about their work in addressing many of the issues surrounding diagnosis, assessment of mental health and social emotional wellbeing issues. The first and second editions of the book have been written by recognised experts, practitioners and researchers in a range of disciplines within the mental health field and have presented a variety of perspectives related to the causes and possible solutions to many of the social and emotional and mental health issues experienced by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. A strong Aboriginal voice permeates both editions of the book; indeed the high number of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander authors and the strength of the collegiality and collaboration between authors have made both the first and second editions unique. In the second edition there are 76 authors, 44 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander authors and 32 non-Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander authors. This speaks well to the growing number of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander experts who are writing and adding to the body of knowledge around mental health and associated areas.
The information contained on this website has been sourced by the Australian Indigenous Psychology Education Project (AIPEP) and AIPEP 2. The first AIPEP was funded by the Australian Government Office of Teaching and Learning. AIPEP 2 is part of the Transforming Indigenous Mental Health and Wellbeing Project, funded by the Million Minds Mission Grant. The views expressed in this website do not necessarily reflect the views of the Australian Government Office of Teaching and Learning or the Million Minds Mission Grant.
Several of the images used throughout this website are credited to Chris Lewis