A unique new suicide prevention campaign, Talking Heals, was created by and for LGBTI communities supports community members to access support that understands their needs, writes the Queensland Council for LGBTI Health.
Our LGBTI Sistergirl and Brotherboy communities are resilient, creative, strong and wonderfully diverse. And in 2020 we’ve all had to draw on this resilience and these strengths in challenging times.
While this year has been difficult for our communities, even prior to COVID-19 our communities have always faced significant challenges and disadvantage.
The level of energy required to overcome these challenges and higher levels of disadvantage, often places our communities at significantly higher rates of self-harm and higher levels of suicide risk, especially the young people in our communities, our Transgender, Gender Diverse and Non-Binary communities, and our Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander community members.
2020 has been no exception and we are all seeing and feeling the impacts.
Talking Heals suicide prevention campaign is first of its kind
As a member of our communities here in Queensland, our team, and our Organisation, the Queensland Council for LGBTI Health, supported by funding from Brisbane North PHN through the Australian Government’s PHN Program and with contributions by Brisbane South PHN, has been promoting a first of its kind suicide prevention campaign called Talking Heals in the Brisbane north and south areas.
This campaign has drawn on the best strengths of our communities. The ones that let us lead, own, develop and grow our own unique and tailored responses.
Further, it has drawn on one of the key values of our organisation and our communities, that of Partnership and Collaboration.
We are grateful to Yarns Heal for the opportunity to draw on the amazing artwork in their campaign. And in these difficult times, we are proud to stand alongside our communities.
It was important to us that this campaign was developed with community members from its very beginning and reflects and speaks to what is actually happening in our communities.
To achieve this, the campaign features artwork developed by community members, with messaging developed with the guidance and input of people with lived experience.
The overall campaign was developed with the guidance of a steering committee of LGBTI services and groups, and community members.
Community artwork is central to the campaign
Central to the Talking Heals campaign are two pieces of art by Mikarla Teague (called Talking Can Make It Better, pictured above) and Nicky Newly (called Yarns Heal, pictured below). Both artworks beautifully communicate the issues our communities regularly face.
The artists have described their art as representing the coming together of people, and of art being another way to have conversations beyond the stigma of suicide and the silence about this topic.
This campaign sits alongside the powerful Yarns Heal Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander campaign. This campaign also received funding as part of the Suicide Prevention Trial.
Talking Heals also features the Yarns Heal artwork by Riki Salam as a central part of this campaign.
Launched earlier this year, we have promoted Talking Heals through roadside billboards, social media, and distributing postcards and posters.
Cinemas have shown a first of its kind cinema ad which speaks to LGBTI Sistergirl and Brotherboy people about suicide.
If you are based in the Brisbane North region and this story has raised any issues for you, or you or someone you care about needs support, visit TalkingHeals.org.au for information on how to access support from services involved in the Brisbane North Suicide Prevention Trial, or call the QC office on 3017 1777.
Find out more about the Yarns Heal campaign at YarnsHeal.com.au.
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