Who is Lived Experience Australia?
For over 20 years Lived Experience Australia (LEA) has been advocating for and with those with lived experience of mental ill-health, their carers and family members.
LEA is a national systemic advocacy, research, and capacity building organisation.
Who are we?
All of our board members and staff each have their own lived experience of mental ill-health as either a consumer, carer, or both.
Because of this, LEA is an informed, authentic, lived experience organisation that is trusted by consumers and carers to understand and advocate for their unique needs and perspectives.
Lived Experience Australia supports a highly skilled workforce through provision of quality research, training, and resources for consumers, carers, clinicians and service providers for improved, inclusive and responsive mental health services across Australia.
Our Leadership Experience
In 2021, LEA was announced as the winner in the Lived Experience Leadership category of The Mental Health Services Awards for Australia and New Zealand.
This recognition was for significant and sustained consumer and carer advocacy with the citation reading:
Making a difference with and for consumers and carers.
This was achieved through our activities and their translational impact, particularly over the past 3 years, with an increasing number of submissions to support inquiries into mental health and suicide prevention, our capacity building program and our lived experience led research achievements.
LEA is a conduit for people with lived experience to have their voice heard and make a difference in mental health in Australia, with extensive existing networks in all states and territories. We are inclusive and seek to advocate for all Australians.
LEA brings the voices of both consumers and carers together while recognising and appreciating the diverse views and different challenges the two groups may face, regardless of whether their experience is of public, private or non-government mental health services.
We engage with all levels of government in Australia, providing submissions, panel representatives, we attend inquiries and speak directly to those who can support our work to see Australia's mental health services be what they should be. You can see many of our past submissions here on our website.
LEA leadership is requested for plenary and symposium speaking engagements at conferences, webinars, by the media, and at inquiries as a trusted and authentic voice for lived experience.
LEA is a leader in and has a strong focus on using translational research to inform our systemic advocacy. Our Lived experience research is conducted by, with, and for, people with lived experience.
We have strong partnerships with Universities and other professional bodies. We ensure that all our research is professionally conducted and reviewed. Our research page has more information on past studies we have conducted.
We are always seeking people to participate in our research so that we can gain greater insights into the unique lived experiences of people living with mental ill-health. If you receive our emails, you will be among the first to know about new research - giving you the opportunity to share your story.
03. Capacity Building
LEA has capacity building programs to support consumers, carers, and families in their advocacy. We are increasingly focused on the value of peer workers.
We also build lived experience understanding through workshops with clinicians and organisational staff. These opportunities to engage with and learn from consumers, carers, peer workers, agency groups, clinicians, and staff who participate, further inform our advocacy for improved, inclusive and responsive mental health services across Australia.
Lived Experience Australia aims to connect those with Lived Experience of mental ill-health, or their carers/family members with resources and others with similar experiences.
We do this in a number of ways:
Lived Experience Australia's State Advisory Forums are an opportunity to hear about the experiences of consumers and their families, empower community members to drive change and share the latest news affecting the mental health sector.
Our online Lived Experience Forums (in partnership with the help and qualified support of SANE Australia) allow people to connect when they can't meet face to face, or would prefer to connect online.
Our emails are how we connect with our community to share advocacy information, research opportunities, upcoming webinars and training sessions, and any other news we believe may be useful. Sign up to be a part of it.