Reaching more than 10,000 children, youth, adults and families affected by mental illness every year in WA.
HelpingMinds (formerly Arafmi) is the pre-eminent mental health services and carer support organisation, that was established nearly 40 years ago as a not for profit charity in Perth, Western Australia.
We have a professional and compassionate team of staff and dedicated volunteers who provide quality, confidential support and services to children, youth, adults and families who are caring for someone with a mental illness or individuals who affected by a mental illness.
The majority of our services are free of charge and focus on: advocacy, understanding the mental health system, education, counselling and support, school holiday programs and respite.
If you have any questions in regards to our suite of services we encourage you to talk to one of our helpful team today. Drop us a line today on (08) 9427 7100.
On July 20, 1976 the Western Australian Association for Mental Health, then known as the Mental Health Association, called a public meeting for carers of people with mental illness. Betty Rebakis attended that first meeting and recalls:
“About 70 interested people attended, if I remember, all bringing our fears, grief and guilt with us but hoping for some relief at last. Dr Hearn stood up, some of us had not met him before; he stood tall and straight and spoke clearly and directly with a statement I will never forget.
“I want you all to know that there is nothing you have done, or haven’t done or should have done, that would have made any difference to your sick relative. It was all inevitable, so I want you all to get rid of any guilt feelings before we start.”
I as a mother heaved a sigh of relief, it was the kindest and most positive thing I’d heard for several years. My guilt was removed from that moment; it was the beginning of my learning experience in coping and coming to terms with mental illness.”
And so began Arafmi. We commenced support groups in an upstairs room at 311 Hay Street, Subiaco. It was cold in winter and warm in summer. Here at last was a place that carers could talk freely and unload their hearts to, and share their problems with, a group of understanding people.
Between then and now we have grown considerably and in September 2015 we changed our name from Arafmi WA to HelpingMinds to better reflect our commitment to providing quality education, respite and support services. Over the years we have increased our geographic footprint and now have teams offering support through Kimberley, Pilbara, Gascoyne and Mid West, throughout Perth and down to Rockingham and Mandurah in the South. We celebrated our 40th anniversary with a Board of Governance of 12 members and operational staff in excess of 75.
Since our inception we’ve seen significant growth and understanding of mental illness. With the recent changes under the NDIS we look forward to growing and evolving the HelpingMinds suite of services and encouraging further conversations and understanding. We want to encourage all those affected by mental illness to talk with someone today. There’s no better time. Let’s talk.
HelpingMinds respectfully acknowledge that we work on Aboriginal land and pay our respects to community members and Elders, past and present. Individuals pictured are models and are used for illustrative purposes only.
HelpingMinds is committed to embracing diversity and eliminating all forms of discrimination in the provision of health services. HelpingMinds welcomes all people irrespective of ethnicity, lifestyle choice, faith, sexual orientation and gender identity
HelpingMinds respectfully acknowledge that we work on Aboriginal land and pay our respects to community members and elders, past and present. Individuals pictured are models and are used for illustrative purposes only.
HelpingMinds is committed to embracing diversity and eliminating all forms of discrimination in the provision of health services. Helping Minds welcomes all people irrespective of ethnicity, lifestyle choice, faith, sexual orientation and gender identity