The Gold Industry Group (GIG) in partnership with not-for-profit LIVIN will commence a national tour next month to bring LIVINWell workshops to member offices, mine sites, schools and the wider community across Australia, in an effort to help break the stigma traditionally associated with mental illness.

Since establishing a partnership in 2017, the GIG and LIVIN seek to connect, support and empower gold industry workers, their families, friends and members of their local community to speak up, seek help and help others.

With a recent report undertaken by the Chamber of Minerals and Energy of Western Australia recommending ongoing mental health support programs and well-being initiatives to reduce the shame affiliated with psychological challenges, the GIG’s collaboration with LIVIN continues to grow.

“Education and connection are key, and while there is an embedded stigma in society, we are unable to move forward,” Gold Industry Group Chairman and Perth Mint Chief Executive Officer Richard Hayes said.

“The impact the GIG had working with LIVIN on the first week-long tour in 2017 to encourage employees to have a conversation that could potentially save someone’s life was immeasurable,” said Mr Hayes.

“We’ve come a long way since then and I am now proud to announce we are taking the program around Australia for more than a month during March and April.

“The GIG and its members are committed to working together to support its workforce and the community to change the way mental illness is perceived and deliver the tools to inspire discussions with the important message that ‘it ain’t weak to speak’,” he concluded.

LIVIN Co-Founder Casey Lyons spoke of the importance of their partnership with the GIG and the significant opportunity ahead to make a real difference.

“Every year, almost one in five Australians will experience a mental illness, with the number of deaths by suicide in young Australians at the highest it has been in 10 years,” said Mr Lyons.

“Two out of three Australians with a mental health issue do not access professional support as shame and embarrassment remains the number one barrier to getting help.

“LIVIN exists to positively change this, and through partnerships with organisations such as the GIG we are now able to reach entire industries and regional communities that we would have not gained access to otherwise,” he concluded.

Proceeds from the GIG LIVIN national tour will go towards the delivery of mental health education for young people in schools across the country via LIVIN’s school program.

The LIVINWell program is delivered by personable facilitators with experience and mental health training, providing people with the basic tools to seek help, help others and champion the message ‘It Aint Weak to Speak’.

GIG member companies supporting the national tour include Newmont Australia, KCGM, Gold Fields, Gold Road Resources, AngloGold Ashanti Australia, Evolution Mining, the City of Kalgoorlie-Boulder, The Perth Mint and ABC Refinery.

In addition to delivering the program at offices, mine sites and schools across Australia, the GIG and LIVIN will also host a free community session in the City of Kalgoorlie-Boulder on 14 March 2019, sponsored by Evolution Mining and KCGM.