Checking on one another's mental health is part of a weekly routine for personnel at HMAS Moreton.
The ADF is a resilient workforce, which can sometimes make it hard to ask for help and this is why Moreton’s personnel stay connected with activities ensuring a healthier wellbeing.
One in five Australians experience mental health problems every year, with depression and anxiety being the most prolific conditions.
In a recent visit to Moreton, the Mental Health Promotions Coordinator at the ADF Centre for Mental Health South Queensland Jennifer Harvey, praised members for recognising the significance of mental health.
“I am always so heartened when I visit Moreton. As a team they really embrace mental health and wellbeing,” Ms Harvey said.
“I hear stories of how people regularly check in with one another, I see a team that share a laugh and engage in activities such as yoga, bowling, gardening and ‘Hawaiian Shirt Day’ barbecues.
“The team are just connected, not only through work but in other meaningful ways.”
This year’s theme, "Look after your mental health Australia" is something the ship’s company takes seriously.
Physical Training Instructor Petty Officer Tricia Muller said she was coordinating a range of activities.
“At our morning PT classes we have a variety of ranks from various workplaces attend,” Petty Officer Muller said.
“The programming is designed to have people working in groups or teams, which allows for encouragement of one another and exposes individual mental and physical drive.
“At the end of each session we usually finish with a gratitude exercise, personnel partner up and share something they are grateful for or share why they are grateful to be working with their partner.
“This simple activity can have an enormous impact on someone’s day and their sense of worth within the team.”
COVID-19 safe recreational activities are also a regular part of the contribution to mental wellbeing, including 10-pin bowling, Swedish long ball, bouldering and softball.
“The friendly competition gets everyone out of the office and achieves a healthier balance to our busy working week,” Petty Officer Muller said.
“Engaging in physical activity provides us with a positive experience and the psychological effects can lift people.
“With COVID-19 it has been easy to fall into a negative headspace as conversations and changes to lifestyle have been impacted by the pandemic.
“The activities we do enable us to support one another find our fun in the week and gives us opportunities to check in with our shipmates.”
The ADF Health and Wellbeing Portal "Fighting Fit" provides information on ADF Health and Mental Health services and support.