The National Contributing Life Project aims to ensure that the National Mental Health Commission’s work in driving mental health reform and change is informed by the views and experiences of Australians, particularly people with lived experience of mental health difficulties, their families, friends and other support people. The Project will develop a survey methodology by which people can talk regularly with the Commission about their experiences related to:

• A sense of thriving, not just surviving
• Effective support, care and treatment
• Having something meaningful to do and look forward to
• Having connections with family, friends, culture and community
• Feeling safe, stable and secure.

Once developed, the methodology will enable people to talk about what is happening in their lives, what helps them to lead a contributing life, what hinders and importantly, what would make a difference to their lives.

The methodology will be used support the development of a National Contributing Life Survey. The Commission intends to use the information received through the survey so that it is heard and understood by policy and program decision makers, funders, agencies and organisations and community members. It will: provide a regular vehicle to measure progress; help identify gaps in policy implementation and supports that are most important to people’s recovery; help identify priorities for change, so that over time each person has the choices and resources available to achieve a full and contributing life, and live in communities that have better opportunities to build mental health, strengthen resilience and work to prevent suicide.


The Commission invites you to help with building the Contributing Life Method by responding to the questions at the end of this paper. You can respond in a number of ways:

• Online by completing this project survey before 31/May/2013
• By using the Word file on the Commission's website and emailing it to
• By mailing your response to National Contributing Life Project team’s office, Attention:- Leanne Craze, 10 Gunyah Place Glen Alpine NSW 2560
• By speaking with Leanne or Ross by phone 02 4625 7777

Other ways of assisting the project include:

• Tell the Project Team about any similar surveys or qualitative research that could be usefully explored
• Participating in or supporting the pilot of the Contributing Life Survey Methodology when it commences in June
• Providing comment on the piloted methodology, how it might be improved and how it might target groups with particular needs.


Leanne Craze...... T: 02 4625 7777 M: 0408 869 051