Research projects

Y Fronts

Principal researchers

Craig Gear


CGA Consulting NSW Pty Ltd


Dameyon Bonson




Association Professor Devon Indig

Senior Research Fellow, Australian Prevention Partnership Centre

Sydney University


Mr Paul Shevalis

Creative Director

Led By Design


Mr David McGrath


David McGrath Consulting              



CGA Consulting NSW



Co-funded with         


Award type   

Request for Tender

Project completion year       


Project brief  

Y Fronts is a peer-to-peer community mobilisation and stigma reduction strategy. The Y Fronts mobile application (and supporting social media platforms) will be built ‘by men for men’ in the region connecting them through the virtual communities they will co-design. Y Fronts is about connecting men in remote areas who work FIFO/DIDO with other men in similar circumstances and enhancing their conversations about mental wellbeing and experiences with stigma in a male driven, interactive and non-confronting manner.

The purpose of this research is to develop a relevant approach to reducing stigma regarding depression and suicidal thoughts in and amongst men in the FIFO/DIDO workforces.

The project seeks to test if the activity-based interactions through the Y Fronts app will promote ongoing engagement within the virtual community and thereby providing greater opportunities to push mental wellbeing literacy and stigma reduction.

Activity based interaction and participation is key, as this will keep men engaging. As a safety mechanism, the Y-Front app will provide links to additional resources, peer networks and referral pathways for those seeking assistance for their self or a mate, or a family member.

At baseline, 371 participants completed the pre-intervention survey and 157 completed the follow up assessment.  The baseline survey found that depression literacy at baseline was relatively good with strong identification of depression symptoms including a loss of confidence and poor self-esteem, feeling guilty when not at fault, and changes in eating and sleeping behaviours. However, participants had lower levels of literacy regarding the effectiveness of treatment for depression.  The baseline survey also found younger men aged less than 30 years had significantly worse depression literacy (66% correct vs. 72% correct) than men aged 30 years and over with particularly low literacy about antidepressants.

In regards to depression stigma at baseline it was over twice as high for participants for personal stigma compared to perceived stigma. In the follow-up survey, 47% of men and 33% of women indicated they would not tell anyone if they had depression (personal stigma), while twice as many men (90%) and nearly three times as many women (85%) believed most people would not tell anyone if they had depression (perceived stigma). Men aged under 30 years were significantly more likely than men aged 30 years and older to think that people with depression are unpredictable (43% vs. 26%).  For stigma relating to suicide, it was measured using the three sub-scales: stigma, isolation/depression, and glorification/normalisation. It was found that significantly higher rates of stigma of suicide were found for men compared to women for both the stigma sub-scale (11% vs. 3%) and the isolation/depression sub-scale (90% vs. 82%). Stigma associated with suicide was significantly higher among men aged under 30 years including being significantly more likely than older men to think that people who suicide are: immoral (25% vs. 7%), irresponsible (34% vs. 20%), or stupid (43% vs. 18%).  For wellbeing measures, it was found that women had significantly higher wellbeing scores in over half of the eight domains compared to men. FIFO men aged less than 30 years had significantly better wellbeing scores than men aged 30 years and older in three domains only being: intellectual (78% vs. 68%), financial (74% vs. 63%) and social (68% vs. 58%).

For pre- and post-intervention evaluation, no significant differences were found for stigma reduction for depression, suicide or depression literacy when comparing men who downloaded the YFronts app (N=16) and men who did not download the app (N=57). The only significant difference found was a higher score (indicating better wellbeing) in the occupational wellbeing domain among YFronts app users compared to non-users.  From the qualitative information collected, information and strategies FIFO workers use to maintain good mental health and wellbeing came mostly from peers in a conversation or dialogue.

Read the YFronts summary report

Read the YFronts final report

For more information visit:



Stay in touch with us

Sign up below for regular emails filled with information, advice and support for you or your loved ones.

Sign me up