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Smiling Mind announcement

Smiling Mind announcement

Foundation & Government partner to deliver mental health support to schools

The Buildcorp Foundation is pleased to announce the next step of our impact, a $1.2million investment in the Smiling Mind schools program, dollar matched by the NSW Department of Education.

Josephine Sukkar AM, Chair of the Buildcorp Foundation shared the announcement from NSW Minister for Education, the Hon. Rob Stokes MP, at the Foundation’s ‘The Party 2019’ fundraiser on Saturday 9 March. The Foundation and NSW Government will partner with not for profit provider Smiling Mind to invest $2.4million to roll out mindfulness training to 100,000 primary school students and 8,000 teachers across 400 NSW schools.

This investment is in addition to the Foundation’s ongoing support of Lifeline’s crisis support services. In 2019 the Foundation will donate a further $200,000 to Lifeline, bringing our five-year Lifeline donation total up to $800,000.

Josephine Sukkar said: “The Foundation’s strategy in supporting both the crisis support services of Lifeline Australia and the preventative programs of Smiling Mind will bookend our financial contribution to the mental health sector in an impactful way.

“This triumvirate between government, the for-purpose sector and business is a model we are proud to be part of, and we want to acknowledge Minister Stokes and the Department for forging this important partnership, which will deliver positive mental health outcomes for the community.”

About Smiling Mind

Smiling Mind was started in 2012 and their state-of-the-art technology platform has since become the trusted digital tool for individuals, workplaces and the classroom with over 3.5 million app downloads and over 55,000 educators now using their resources.

In schools, Smiling Mind delivers lessons based on mindfulness practices to help students build resilience and deal with issues such as anxiety, stress and bullying. The ‘curriculum ready’ program also provides training for teachers, as well as teaching resources and lesson plans.

The Buildcorp Foundation chose Smiling Mind after comprehensive research into preventative programs. After a successful trial by the Victorian Government where the results and positive outcomes were measured by Deakin University, the NSW Government was already considering the program, subject to a funding partner.

Smiling Mind CEO Dr Addie Wootten said that this was an important and meaningful step in taking preventative action to help NSW students develop the skills needed to be mentally healthy, resilient and engaged learners.

“One of the key benefits of the program is the development of emotional awareness and self-regulation skills so that students are better able to manage life’s challenges and build healthy and connected relationships,” Dr Wootten said.

In the future, programs like these will hopefully help reduce the need for crisis support and help reverse the worrying upward trend in suicide statistics.