Mental health support

At EPIC, we understand that looking after your mental health has everything to do with success in your life. This is especially true for job seekers with disability who are looking for employment, and those who are in a new role.

We know that mental illness is the leading cause of disability in Australia, and one in five people experience mental health issues every year. Among EPIC’s cohort of job seekers, 38% have a diagnosed mental health condition.

In order to equip our job seekers for success, we assist them holistically. We know that as job seekers look for work, it is not uncommon to experience feelings of vulnerability, low self-esteem and anxiety.

How we support our job seekers with mental illness

In 2013 we created our specialised Mental Health Consultancy to give our job seekers the best chance of employment success. As part of the consultancy, six Mental Health Consultants were employed to work closely with our job seekers.

Our Mental Health Consultants have expertise in mental health therapeutic approaches and employment services. They are experienced in developing practical skills and strategies for improving mental health.

Support is always tailored to each individual’s needs. It can include anything from self-care techniques to significant therapeutic interventions, to coordinating referrals, access to housing and specialist services.

Some job seekers prefer group settings, which can help address feelings of isolation associated with mental illness while teaching important life skills and strategies for coping with adversity. Others appreciate one-on-one support.

At EPIC we know that everyone is different and it is important to us that our job seekers receive the mental health support that they need. When you come to EPIC you will have the choice and control to choose what services you receive and when. Our Mental Health Consultants are here to support you and will tailor their approach to your unique needs.

Bevan, Talia and Marie stand together smiling in the Bird's Nest Restaurant
Talia has PTSD and she has been kicking goals at her job at Bird’s Nest. Bird’s Nest supports their employees with mental health conditions by striving to understand them and their condition.

Transitioning to paid employment with mental illness

We understand that mental illness has a significant impact on a person’s ability to work. That’s why we take the time to ensure that our job seekers have the confidence, skills and support they need before we transition them to paid employment.

For people with mental illness work preparation activities are a great way to prepare for the workforce. Work preparation training can take anywhere from a week to a year, and that’s okay. Our Mental Health Consultants will tailor your employment journey to your unique needs and aspirations. This helps ensure your long-term success in the workplace.

Our Mental Health team will connect with the relevant Employment Consultants and Employment Advisors when you are closer to being job ready. They will ensure your new employer understands how to best support you in the workplace.

We can also offer your employer mental health training through our diversity and inclusion workshops. This training ensures they are equipped with the tools they need to see you succeed in your role.

At EPIC, we believe in creating sustainable employment, the result is success for all – employers, job seekers, and the community.

Brock has found employment at Loyalty Pets has helped him manage his depression

Who can access EPIC’s Mental Health Consultancy?

Our Mental Health Consultancy is available to all EPIC job seekers who need it.

Some of our job seekers have a diagnosed mental illness before they access our services, others may experience increased levels of depression and anxiety while looking for a job. Our approach is to support our job seekers across the entirety of their employment journey to ensure that they are receiving the support they need, when they need it.

Men’s mental health

At EPIC we understand that men often find it difficult to open up and discuss mental health.

Our Mental Health Consultants come from varied backgrounds and specialise in different services. They provide an environment in which our male job seekers feel free and open to discuss their mental health.

We also have a number of connections in our community with men’s mental health organisations and often act as the link between finding support and our job seekers.

We believe in taking the time to understand our job seekers needs. Our mental health consultants take the time to listen to our job seekers’ concerns both in their journey to employment, and in their personal lives. By equipping ourselves with the knowledge and experience of men’s mental health, we can ensure we are offering holistic support to our job seekers.

Women’s mental health

Around one in five women in Australia will experience depression and one in three women will experience anxiety during their lifetime. Often women put others needs before their own, which can lead to them neglecting their own mental health. At EPIC our mental health consultants have experience helping women identify their mental health needs, and can suggest ways in which they can improve their wellbeing.

Women can experience mental illness at any point in their lives. However, during pregnancy and post-birth, women have an increased risk of experiencing depression. Up to one in ten mothers experience depression whilst pregnant, and one in seven experience depression during the first year following the birth of their baby.

It can be difficult to manage increased demands when returning to work after having a baby. For this reason, our mental health consultants are experienced at helping women when going through this period of change.

We walk the talk when it comes to employing people with mental illness

We understand that organisations are stronger when they focus on people’s abilities and strengths. One in three EPIC employees has lived experience with disability, which gives us a valuable and different perspective. We draw upon the insights and life experiences of our staff with disability and mental illness to understand and meet the needs of our job seekers.

“Being able to share my lived experience of depression and anxiety with our job seekers have provided ways in which I can get through hard times, and ways in which they can get through their hard times as well.” Willow, EPIC Assist Employment Consultant.

How to access our Mental Health Consultancy

Send us a message or give us a call to discuss your unique needs and goals when you join EPIC. We can ensure we tailor our approach to ensure you are receiving the support you need right from the start.

Janelle, Jimmy, and EPIC at Benny's Cafe
“My Consultant really understood me and I just was like, wow, you’ve really given me a chance here, mate. And he was just lovely. He helped me in so many different ways. He just sits there and just listens and he understands ’cause he’s been through things as well,” said Janelle, who now works at Benny’s Café in Caboolture.

Rebecca’s mental illness no longer defines her

It wasn’t until Rebecca hit rock bottom that she realised she needed help. Now Rebecca is proving that not only can she excel in her job, she has the confidence and independence to move forward in her future.