The Chairman of Beyond Blue Jeff Kennett has announced that former Prime Minister Julia Gillard has accepted the invitation of the Board of Beyond Blue to join its Board as a Director.
The Board ratified Ms Gillard’s appointment at its meeting in December.
Mr Kennett said: “We are particularly honoured that Julia Gillard has seen fit to join our organisation as we continue to serve those in the community suffering depression and anxiety and who are at risk of suicide.
“Julia Gillard will not only bring a great deal of experience to our Board, but importantly the passion for the sector that drove her in government to establish the National Disability Scheme, which if professionally and compassionately introduced could be the most important social reform of the century.
“For many of those who suffer disability, and their carers, depression can be an ever present condition.
“Julia Gillard has always been a kindred soul of our work.
“So much of the success of Beyond Blue has been that it has received bi-partisan support from politicians and governments since its inception in 2000.
“Ms Gillard’s appointment only reinforces that bi-partisanship.”
Ms Gillard said: “As the daughter of a psychiatric nurse, I have always understood the need to talk openly about mental health and respond to those in need. In government, I was proud to extend services to help and treat young people battling depression and other conditions. Like Jeff, I believe the NDIS has great potential to assist those in our community who face the most profound mental health challenges. In my life now, I am delighted to be able to continue to make a contribution in an area I feel so passionately about by joining Beyond Blue."
Ms Gillard will attend her first Beyond Blue Board meeting in February 2015.