Position statement: Healthy communities


This position statement outlines the role of healthy communities in supporting and promoting good mental health and wellbeing.
Our health, including our mental health, is intrinsically linked to our communities and environments. These external factors impact mental health and wellbeing in a variety of complex ways including by contributing to risk and protective factors for the development, exacerbation and recovery of mental health and wellbeing issues. By supporting the health of our communities and environments, we create spaces for the prevention of and response to mental health and wellbeing issues in all domains of life.


Key principles:

1. Healthy environments, including physical, cultural and spiritual environments, provide critical foundations for good mental health and wellbeing.

2. Healthy communities support mental health and wellbeing, including by providing communal supports and by facilitating individual self-realisation.

3. Promotion of healthy behaviours can support a person’s mental health and wellbeing when conducted in ways that are non-stigmatising and respectful of individual autonomy.

4. Engaging with communities supports mental health and wellbeing by enabling autonomy/choice and control.

5. Communities play an important role in mental health promotion and early intervention, including by raising awareness about mental health issues and reducing stigma through education and connections.

6. Place-based initiatives promote good mental health and wellbeing by recognising and targeting the needs of communities within their own environments.


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