On 31st March, the Australian Centre for Posttraumatic Mental Health became Phoenix Australia – Centre for Posttraumatic Mental Health.
Our mission and our focus remain the same. In 2015 we also celebrate 20 years of dedication to promoting recovery from trauma. This is a time to look to the future and consider how we can best achieve our vision to improve the wellbeing and quality of life for individuals and communities who experience trauma.
Minister for Veterans’ Affairs Launches Phoenix Australia
On 31st March, Senator The Hon. Michael Ronaldson officiated at our 20th anniversary celebration and announced our new name. The Minister declared the Government’s ongoing commitment to posttraumatic mental health, and stated that he looks forward to “further strengthening … the relationship between DVA and the now Phoenix Australia in their important work together for the benefit of veterans during this Anzac Centenary period and beyond”.
Professor Forbes spoke of Phoenix Australia’s commitment to pushing the frontiers of knowledge and best practice care for all those affected by trauma, with a focus on early intervention and researching new treatments. He also pledged to apply knowledge acquired through our collaborative work with the Departments of Veterans’ Affairs and Defence to the benefit of the broader community, and similarly, to take the learnings from our work with the community to guide and benefit our work for veterans.
A name that symbolises hope
Phoenix Australia is a name that signifies evolution, renewal, regeneration, and most importantly, hope. In short, it is a name that captures the essence of recovery after trauma. We hope too that this name will help to reduce the stigma of mental illness, and enable us to broaden our influence and promote recovery from the effects of trauma in all its guises. A great deal of thought went into choosing this name, and we know you will agree it is much easier to say and remember.
20 years of dedication to promoting recovery from trauma
Phoenix Australia has developed and grown over the past 20 years. Commencing in 1995 as the National Centre for War-Related Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) with a mission to improve the recognition and treatment of PTSD in the veteran population, in 2000, a change of name to the Australian Centre for Posttraumatic Mental Health signalled an expanded mission to investigate the wide range of trauma-related mental health problems affecting veterans and serving personnel. Since that time, the focus has broadened further to include the wider community, and our activities now encompass posttraumatic mental health problems following accidents, violent crime, terrorism and natural disasters. Australia is a high achiever in the area of trauma-related mental health, and this is a result of the collaboration between government, researchers, organisations, services and individuals across the country. We share a common purpose to create a future with hope, renewal and recovery for all survivors of trauma.
Phoenix Australia’s ongoing commitment is to produce high quality research which illuminates our understanding of the nature and effects of trauma, and to continue to provide evidence-based training for practitioners who provide trauma treatment, and best practice advice to organisations, individuals, and communities at risk.