Our work with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities


Beyond Blue acknowledges the Land on which our head office is based has deep connections to peoples and cultures across the Eastern Kulin Nation. As such we acknowledge the Traditional Owners of this area, the Boonwurrung and the Wurundjeri Peoples, and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and emerging. As an organisation with national reach, we extend our respect to all Elders and First Nations Peoples across Australia.

Beyond Blue recognises that much needs to be done to address depression, anxiety, suicide and related drug and alcohol issues in First Nations Peoples communities.

Over time and across Australia, generations of First Nations Peoples have experienced trauma, grief and loss. Psychological distress is high among First Nations Peoples and this is worsened by ongoing social and health factors.

Beyond Blue works to address discriminatory behaviour and equip First Nations Peoples with the knowledge and skills to maintain their own social emotional wellbeing. This includes recognising signs in people close to them, in order to prevent the development of a mental health condition.

In consultation with First Nations Peoples communities, Beyond Blue has developed a range of research, information, education and support strategies to support the social and emotional wellbeing of First Nations Peoples.

Read Beyond Blue's position on social and emotional wellbeing for First Nations Peoples.

Statement on the Voice to Parliament

Beyond Blue wholeheartedly supports a First Nations Voice to Parliament.

Find out more

Find out more about our work

Projects and campaigns

Beyond Blue has developed and funded a range o projects in partnership with First Nations Peoples communities and organisations. A selection of these projects are listed below.

Invisible Discriminator

Several studies have demonstrated a link between experiences of racism and poorer mental health among First Nations Peoples, including a greater risk of developing depression and anxiety, substance use and attempted suicide

Beyond Blue's national anti-discrimination campaign, Invisible Discriminator, highlights the impact of racism on the social and emotional wellbeing of First Nations Peoples.

Proppa Deadly Project

The Proppa Deadly project was funded by Beyond Blue and managed by the Brisbane Indigenous Media Association. The project encouraged First Nations Peoples to take action against depression and anxiety through the telling of their own stories across the community radio sector. 

Fifteen First Nations Peoples radio stations participated by developing 65 segments which were broadcast over a period of 26 weeks in 2014.  Listen to the stories here:

Stories for Keeping Strong

From 2013 to 2015 Beyond Blue worked with Bangarra Dance Theatre, the Victorian Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation (VACCHO) and Alive and Kicking Goals: Young Aboriginal Women’s Suicide Prevention Program to produce culturally appropriate digital stories to support mental health literacy.

The objectives of the project was to equip people to recognise, talk about and help family and community members to eek professional support if experiencing depression and/or anxiety.

See the digital stories here:


In 2013 Beyond Blue launched three short videos, including Stories for Keeping Strong, via Hitnet community hubs for First Nations Peoples across Australia. Hitnet is a national network of community hubs, with interactive touchscreen kiosks and WiFi access for mobile devices, in First Nations Peoples communities.

Hitnet brings information and services to the hardest to reach people in the world, providing access to trusted, culturally relevant health information that empowers communities to live healthy lives. There are five videos that are now available: raising awareness of anxiety and depression, highlighting signs and symptoms, and providing culturally-appropriate information about healing and support. Check out the 'Keeping Strong' channel on the Hitnet Community Hub.

Indigenous Mental Health Audit Tool

Beyond Blue funded the Menzies School of Health Research to develop a Mental Health Audit Tool. The audit tool software is available for primary health care staff who work in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health services. This tool enables health services to improve their management of mental health by systematically identifying patients with a major mental condition and auditing the services provided against current best practice. The Centre for Quality Improvement in Indigenous Primary Health Care (One21Seventy) is currently working to support over 200 Aboriginal Health Services and has provided training to over 500 primary health care staff in the implementation of the audit tool.

Beyond Blue/RANZCP Indigenous website

With funding from Beyond Blue, the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists (RANZCP) developed a website to provide mental health professionals with information about First Nations Peoples' mental health conditions. The site aims to increase knowledge and understanding to achieve better outcomes. Information can be accessed by mental health professionals as well as members of the general public. It is an interactive and flexible website with reading materials and seven training modules, including case studies that cover a range of mental heath conditions across the lifespan.

Research relating to First Nations Peoples

Research projects

Beyond Blue funds a variety of research which contributes to the understanding and knowledge of depression and anxiety in First Nations Peoples, and regularly evaluates its projects targeting racism.


Beyond Blue offers a free catalogue of resources for First Nations Peoples, their partners, families and friends, and for health professionals who work in mental health.


Beyond Blue values partnerships that aim to support the social and emotional wellbeing of First Nations Peoples.

Beyond Blue is a co-signatory on the Statement of Intent to Close the Gap on Indigenous Health Inequality and a member of the national Close the Gap Campaign Steering Committee. Find out more about the Committee.

Some useful links

More information on First Nations Peoples

Beyond Blue works to equip First Nations Peoples with the knowledge and skills to maintain their own social emotional wellbeing, and recognise signs in people close to them, in order to prevent the development of a mental health condition.

Read more information, advice and personal stories of First Nations Peoples' experiences with depression, anxiety and suicide.

Find out more