Jennie Hill is the mother of a 22 year old son who has an acquired brain injury which has taken them into settings where services are provided to people with mental illness. Jennie writes:
"Australia gives many millions to organisations like Beyond Blue, but the money that actually filters down to patient care is grossly inadequate, and falling. And the lion’s share of money goes to the feel-good job of “raising awareness”, which is often just a furphy for staging fun events full of mutual back-slapping for well people. Most of whom have never met – and never want to meet – a real live desperately sick person. Meanwhile, those who are desperately ill and at-risk remain unseen, unheard, and untreated – or at the very least under-treated." (I’m So Sorry.)In another article, "I hate RUOK Day. Here’s why.", Jennie writes:
"But now I do know, I feel sick about the tens of millions of dollars in “awareness raising” that should be going to frontline mental health services. I feel desolate about the multi-million-dollar advertising campaigns, and how that money could provide hospital beds and medication for those broken by their pain. I feel rage when I think of the expensive dinners held, attended by smug neuro-typical people to raise awareness of the neuro-different, and all without a single sufferer in the room. And I feel broken-hearted about the souls I’ve seen wandering the corridors of mental health hospitals while visiting my son, and how they’ll soon be discharged (when the money runs out) to a world that doesn’t care. Awareness raising without action plans for those whose awareness has been raised is cruel. Unconscionable. And utterly disgraceful."Jennie isn't alone.