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Message from the Board and CEO – October 2023

COMHWA illustration

Message from the Chair

Dear members,

CoMHWA Board and staff extend their thanks to all members and guests who attended our Annual General Meeting on Wednesday, 25 October. We appreciate the time taken out of everyone’s busy schedules to attend this special and important event to hear about the work carried out by the CoMHWA team over the 2022/23 reporting period.

We also give special thanks to the WA Mental Health Commissioner, Maureen Lewis for being our special guest speaker for the evening, and providing an in-depth overview of the MHC’s priorities for the year ahead. We especially appreciated the transparency and candour when asked some difficult questions, and for being receptive to our input. We look forward to working closely with the MHC into the future.

The Board extends their gratitude to Chris Jeong, outgoing board member. Chris completed one term on the Board, during which time he made contributions in various capacities including Treasurer and FRCC Chair, and brought a wealth of knowledge to the Board through his financial expertise. We wish him all the very best!

Welcome to New Directors!

Over the past twelve months, the Board welcomed five Directors who served on a casual basis, and it was my great pleasure to ratify them as official members of the CoMHWA Board on Wednesday night. Please join me in formally welcoming Hayley Harris, Morgan Margry, Sheleila D’Paiva, Debbie Childs and Steve Pretzel!

I am proud to present our new Executive team:

  • Yours truly – continuing as Chairperson
  • John Dasey – continuing as Vice Chairperson
  • Sheleila D’Paiva – Treasurer
  • Morgan Margry – Secretary

A special thanks and welcome to John, who joins us for his second term on the Board.

Presentation of the Annual Report 2022/23

Our Annual Report is a fantastic opportunity to stop and reflect on the important work carried out by CoMHWA staff across advocacy,education and peer support. As our members, you are at the centre of the work we do, and we thank you all for your valued contributions over the last twelve months.

Click here to read our Annual Report, or contact the office if you would like to be sent a hard copy.

If you would like a hard copy of this year’s Annual Report, please email the Admin team with your postal address and we will mail you a copy.

Launch of New Branding

For those of you who joined us for our AGM, or keep in touch with us via social media, or even noticed the top of this newsletter, we have officially launched our new branding!

After many surveys, focus groups and streams of consultation with Board, staff, members and founders, key findings we represented on our history and future direction, leading us to this contemporary and meaningful new-look brand.

Please see below for further information on our process from Darren Munday, CEO.

Kayla Schembri

Message from the CEO

Dear members,

First of all, I would like to send thanks to each and everyone of you for continuing to support our organisation. We would not be here today, if it weren’t for the passion and drive for reform that was brought together around a kitchen table almost 20 years ago, to form the roots of Consumers of Mental Health WA. These roots come from the consumer / survivor /ex-patient / civil rights movement. We are FOR consumers, and BY consumers.

It was important for us to hold onto these roots when looking at our rebrand. Some of our key findings from focus groups, surveys and discussions found that:

  • We are grassroots to the core, and led by our lived experience;
  • We have a deep expertise and capability;
  • We look at the ‘bigger picture’ and strive to make long-term changes; and
  • We are a small team, doing a huge amount of work.

In light of these findings, our brand promise and tagline were created; short simple statements that clearly and concisely explain our ‘why’.

Listen. Advocate. Change.

Our Brand Promise

We work together as a lived experience community, to amplify your voice and deliver positive change.

Our Logo

It was apparent from our consultations that there was a deep connection to our existing branding and it was important for us to carry some of these themes through, but with a modern take. Our original logo could be seen as ambiguous – was it a comma, or a speech bubble? Originally it was a comma, coinciding with the tagline, “mental illness is a pause… not the end” but others saw it representing a speech bubble, acknowledging that we strengthen the voices of individuals with mental health challenges.

Our new logo; an amalgamation of a speech bubble and a path represents that recovery is not a linear process, it is a journey that we all take.

Over the next few months we will transition our existing brand over to our new look, including a new website. There may be times that you see our old logo appear somewhere – please take this as a reminder of where we have come from.

I’d like to give a final thanks to Alan and the team at Key2Creative for working collaboratively with us on this rebrand.

Darren Munday

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