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Staff of lived experience peak announced

22 Aug 2022

We are delighted to introduce the staff of the Mental Health Lived Experience Peak Queensland (MHLEPQ).

Jorgen Gullestrup – Interim CEO

Jorgen’s role is to ensure the organisation function operationally, have good governance and a strategic direction is developed and maintained as identified by the MHLEPQ Board.

Jorgen is passionate about the work of the MHLEPQ because of his own lived experience and professional experience tells him that the best outcomes are achieved when the lived experience of the end users of any service or product is at the core of the process. This includes what, when and how identified problems to be solved. 

Jorgen, a licensed plumber by trade and holds qualifications in Suicidology, Social and Community Development and Labour Studies, has worked in suicide prevention over the past 15 years including part of establishing MATES in Construction, and various mental health and suicide prevention sector strategy and leadership roles. 

Elloise Waite – Engagement Lead

Elloise believes fundamentally individuals are the experts of their own lives. Her role will be supporting and facilitating those with a lived experience of mental ill-health to not only have their voices heard - but put in action.

Elloise hopes to not only contribute to positive systemic change with her own lived experience of mental illness, but also amplify and celebrate the extraordinary contributions diverse thinking make in our society by taking creative and reflective approaches in citizen-led innovation.

Elloise, holds qualifications in social science, feels incredibly fortunate to have participated in lived experience advisory functions, as an advocate, which has inspired the direction of her professional career in both non-profit and government statutory authorities, with advocacy or systemic oversight functions with roles leading lived-experience engagement, community education and programs design, and media relations.

Tim Johnston – Engagement Lead

Tim is passionate about this role because he strongly believes in supporting people to have a voice and influence into the systems that impact on their lives. He also believes in the development of holistic approaches that support people as whole beings.

Tim has his own lived experience of trauma and survival and strongly believe that the MHLEPQ will effect positive change through supporting people with a lived experience to have a powerful voice.

Tim has a qualification in the social sciences and social policy. His work in Australia has been largely in the community development, collaboration and strategic partnership space in areas such as carers, child protection and family supports, mental health, refugees and housing and homelessness.

Rebecca Bear - Policy Director

Bec belives the MHLEPQ is established to serve the needs and desires of the lived and living experience community of the mental health sector by advocating for transformative change through policy, research and strategy that is led by people with lived expertise. She also believes that people know what needs to happen to create meaningful outcomes for themselves and their families, and are the best informed to recommend system change.

Bec is passionately committed to equity and social justice, has her own mental health recovery (and discovery) journey, and is the loved one of others with their own powerful stories. She has participated as an advocate for herself and others for over thirty years in this space in New Zealand, and has recently arrived in Australia to learn more and contribute to this countries’ work.

Bec has recently completed a social science doctorate in health and has been involved with participatory research to improve the experience of families and hospitalised babies, and worked toward improved outcomes for New Zealand communities in the Mental Health and Addiction Inquiry; Suicide and Child & Youth Mortality Review Committees; Mental Health and Wellbeing Commission; and Royal Commission of Abuse in Care in the last decade.

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