Sharing Results: Lived/Living Experience Insights, Concerns and Strategies for Managing through COVID19

Have a Say / Get Active, Advocacy

As previously shared LELAN is currently surveying people in the lived/living experience community about their experience, concerns and strategies for managing through the current COVID19 crisis. We feel it is important to share back what we have heard and how we are drawing on this wisdom in our advocacy.

Below are the advocacy recommendations we are making to key government representatives, agencies and other peak bodies. Insights and strategies will also be shared on our website and social media channels over the coming days and weeks. A full summary of the survey’s first week of results can be accessed here




The Lived Experience Leadership and Advocacy Network (LELAN) acknowledges the significant impact that COVID19 is having on people around the world. In our community there is heightened emotion, uncertainty and confusion on what steps to take to look after ourselves and each other. We recognise that such responses are valid and that they make sense. 

LELAN believes that there is expertise gained from lived/living experience; a resilience and courage that gets us through hard times and insights and strategies developed that could be valuable for the whole community to hear about and learn from.

We decided to survey our community to check-in with how people are doing at the moment. The results provide an opportunity to share these experiences and valuable strategies for surviving and living through this uncertain time with our community, decision-makers and service providers.

The findings below are a compilation of responses from the first week of the survey being open.



Advocacy recommendations:


-> It is critically important that the needs of people with lived/living experience of distress and/or mental health issues are heard and addressed in our State’s response to COVID19. This includes lived/living experience involvement in strategic discussions and decisions regarding the (re)organisation of how services and systems respond to this changing situation as well as the commissioning and design of new ones

-> The Peer Workforce is a valuable resource that must be prioritised in all response and support options invested in. Trained Peer Workers are effective, and people want them

-> The LETSS Program should be expanded to be available 24/7 and accessible to people in country areas. It is essential that LETSS retains its peer focus

-> Mental health resources that validate the mental health and wellbeing impacts of this unique time in history need to be developed and promoted widely, particularly ones that are non-pathologising, non-clinical and practical. LELAN believes that the development of these resources should be lived experience-led and would welcome the opportunity to deliver on this

-> Clear, caring and concise ‘how-to messages’ for people wanting to access mental health services need to be developed and distributed. This will minimise confusion, assist navigation and circumvent the sea of information that people have access to that may no longer be current given current circumstances

-> Fund and/or provide devices and data packages to enable or increase access to telehealth and/or other online mental health services to those who may otherwise not be able to engage with them

-> Maintain commitment to practices, policies and legislative shifts that prioritise least restrictive options for all people accessing mental health services during the COVID19 crisis