Perinatal Anxiety & Depression Awareness Week was established by PANDA in 2005. Since then PANDA has been leading the perinatal mental health sector in promoting the Week to raise awareness about perinatal anxiety and depression, including signs to look for and where to go to seek support.
In 2017 PANDA was able to able to reach into communities right across the country to raise awareness and reduce stigma around perinatal anxiety and depression and postnatal psychosis.
Our incredible Community Champions and Ambassadors appeared on TV, on radio, in print and online, sharing their unique experiences of perinatal anxiety and depression with audiences across Australia. The Week saw over 150 media appearances featuring PANDA or one of our representatives.
Many Champions and other supporters also shared their stories online and got behind our social media campaign. All these brave women and men saying “It happened to me” or “It happened to us” helped other mums and dads out there who were struggling to know they are not alone.
Many health and community organisations also shared our messages. Through their support PANDA shared information and stories directly with health professionals including doctors, nurses, psychologists, psychiatrists, midwives and child and maternal health nurses, and with social workers and counsellors.
We were also able to get information and stories into some
communities that can miss out on these important messages – Aboriginal and
Torres Strait Islander communities, communities from different cultural
backgrounds, and disadvantaged communities. Perinatal anxiety and depression
does not discriminate, it can affect mums and dads from across all backgrounds,
cultures and income levels, so reaching into ALL communities is crucial.
From its humble beginnings in
2005 Perinatal Anxiety & Depression Awareness Week has grown and is now
picked up by organisations and businesses right across Australia. It’s a great
outcome to have this important message shouted across the country.