St Margarets                                     ACNCChristos

Saint Margarets Healthstart

Developing Mental Wellbeing


For those women who have experienced homelessness, suffered domestic violence or endured prison, mental health wellbeing may have been impacted. These issues need to be addressed and once in stable accommodation it is easier to improve health and wellbeing. The Foundation will partner with an externally appointed specialist group who have been providing rehabilitation and recovery support for those experiencing mental wellbeing issues, homelessness and suicide prevention across Australia for some 30 years.

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The approach will be based on a Collaborative Recovery Model (CRM) developed by Wollongong University that has been shown to assist people living with enduring mental issues and is an industry accepted standard focusing on increasing wellbeing rather than decreasing symptoms. CRM aims to identify personal values and goals and collaborate on making progress to achieving them over 4 stages:

  • Change enhancement
      Helping people believe change is possible and supporting commitment

  • Collaborative strengths and value identification
      Identifying unique values and strengths

  • Collaborative visioning and goal striving
      Short and longer term goals that are realistic and aspirational

  • Collaborative action and mentoring
      The dynamic partnership between support counsellor and the person to reach their goals

Psychological recovery is described as the establishment of a fulfilling and meaningful life and a positive sense of identity founded on hopefulness and self-determination. Recovery is not cure, stabilisation or maintenance- it is a self-directed process of reclaiming meaning and purpose in life.

“The mental health issues of homeless individuals cluster with, and are exacerbated by, other social determinants of health such as psychological trauma, poverty, unemployment, domestic violence and social disconnection. This constellation of underlying social issues challenges traditional clinical boundaries: they are not seen as “medical” problems although they are major determinants of health for people experiencing homelessness.”

Dr Amanda Stafford, Royal Perth Hospital Homeless Health Care Unit

Social Impact Study

Achieving a life of wellbeing