What a great night thanks to the hard work of Elizabeth Dumonic and President Mark. Money raised was $4,590.00 (a great effort). Not to mention the informative and relevant talk on mental health by Mithzay Pomenta.  Up to 100 selfies of people wearing all types of hats were sent to President Mark.  These were shown on Tuesday night to the club members and invited guests.  To the songs of Priscilla Queen of the Desert we were shown hats of all sizes, with attachments such as foliage and other materials.  Winners of all the different categories can be seen on the next page.
Mithzay headed her talk with a primary message: Don’t Wait.  With the current crisis of COVID-19 I am sure that many people could relate in some way to the information that was covered.
The Lid’s included looking at key things about mental health, prevention strategies and the recognition of someone who might be having suicidal thoughts.  Mental health is covered by mental health practitioners including Counsellors (whose role is similar to that of a GP), Specialists such as Psychologists, Psychiatrists and other Allied Health Practitioners.
To understand how people’s wellbeing deteriorates, we looked at a model of how people use an anger outburst to cope and step by step how they got there.  After this reaction, the person often feels a sense of relief, followed by guilt, shame and frustration. This diminishes their external source of worth.  To gain control of the situation before it gets worse, we need to pay attention to the patterns of ‘mental chatter’, feelings and behaviors and seek support early.  This will prevent people from getting stuck in unhealthy patterns of behaviour to cope.  

We also heard about suicide.  The most protective factors for a person are to feel heard and supported and to have the opportunity to work on improving their ability to cope with difficult circumstances.
Exploring your own beliefs about suicide is an important first step to connecting with someone who might be struggling with the thoughts.  Asking ‘Are You OK?’ is great.  However, this question prompts a yes/no answer, which means that often the conversation ends. You can assist people by asking open questions (starting with What or How, for example) and listen with curiosity.  Making sure that you acknowledge that what they are saying and how they are feeling is real and difficult for them, can help the person feel understood.
Sometimes we may notice some warning signs and use them as an invitation to talk (a) Actions such as giving way possessions, recklessness, anger, insomnia (b) Words ‘I just can’t think straight at the moment’, can’t see the future, believing they are worthless or a burden  (c) Physical  a loss of interest in appearance or activities they used to enjoy. This is not an exhaustive list, so trust your instincts.

Don’t be afraid to ask directly ‘Are you thinking of suicide?’ if the answer is No – continue to offer support, push for counsellors to learn coping skills and give crisis/support phone numbers. If Yes – Contact support services. Don’t leave the person alone. Keep on connecting with them.

Support Services
Lifeline : 13 11 14
Kids Helpline : 1800 551 800
Suicide Call Back Service : 1300 659 467
Headspace : 1800 650 890
Beyond Blue : 1300 224 636
ReachOut : ReachOut.com
Other Resources
Head to Health : mental health portal headtohealth.gov.au
SANE : online forums saneforums.org


Best Ladies Hat
Nancy Wang
Best Men's Hat
David Chan
Ladies Comical Hat
Claire Xia
Men's Comical Hat
Ming Tay
Best Children's Hat
Marissa Yu
Best Pets Hat
(Ms Xueqin Shi)