As a leading provider of community-based mental health programs, Communify is passionate about ensuring that every member of our community is afforded access to the mental health care they need. However, we are all too aware that many of our diverse clients have encountered barriers to accessing the help they need throughout the course of their lives.

44-year-old David first came to Communify as a participant in our Springboard program in 2019 to recover from addiction. As an LGBTQIA+ identifying man with autism spectrum disorder, David struggled to find his feet in the world whilst battling mental health challenges, and this manifested in addiction that he felt unable to control. After completing the Springboard program twice to recover from his addiction, David is now benefiting from ongoing support through the Recovery and Discovery Centre. The program is not only helping David manage his mental health on a daily basis; the support he has received has also been empowering for David and has helped him embrace his true sense of self.

David found it difficult to make friends as a child, and later after coming out as gay at 18, his mental health suffered as a result of the stigma he faced at the time. David developed a gambling addiction and struggled for many years with depression and anxiety, and in 2017 he was formally diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder. After his twice-completion of the Springboard program, and a stint in rehab over the summer of 2021/22, David arrived at a real turning point in his life when he engaged with the Recovery and Discovery Centre.

The Recovery and Discovery Centre program is designed to support people who are living with severe and complex mental health challenges. The Centre delivers integrated clinical and non-clinical services utilising a trauma-informed, recovery-orientated approach across three key service streams: psychosocial supports, psychological therapies and clinical nursing care coordination.

For me it’s a one stop shop for most of my needs. Zoe is my social worker here and can address areas where I need assistance, or provide information about things like dental services, and how to manage day to day steps to make up the big picture. Zoe also is my go-to person with any counselling needs.” – David, Recovery and Discovery Centre participant

Since beginning his tailored Recovery and Discovery Centre support program earlier this year, David has thrived in an environment where he has felt comfortable expressing himself, and he has learned invaluable new skills.

“Recovery and Discovery has allowed me to also attend the many courses on offer, and so far I have completed the Fabulous Food course and the DBT skills course, and I am currently attending both the Healthy Living and Living Well with Depression courses. I also am looking forward to soon attending the creative music group held every week in Bardon. Not only do these courses and activities allow me to learn new skills but they also allow me to listen and to share with other people who understand in a non-judgmental space.”

David’s only recommendation is that more mental health services tailored to the LGBTQIA+ and neurodiverse populations be made available, so that they can access the help that is right for them.

“It would be great if there were more specialised LGBTI activities or modules for LGBTI neurodiverse people and their peers… to further empower us neurodiverse people but also embrace our true strengths.”

The Recovery and Discovery Centre team is committed to helping participants better understand and manage their mental health, improve their overall health and wellbeing and transform their lives for a brighter future. Click the link below to find out if what we offer may be right for you.

Learn more about the Recovery and Discovery Centre