our Projects

what we are working on

The Lived Experience Development, Governance and Education (LEDGE) Project [2020-2022]:

[ILC Grant funded by the Department of Social Services] 


LELAN developed the LEDGE Project in response to an increasing need for organisations to build lived experience of mental distress, social issues or injustice (including psychosocial disability) into their governance and services and the increased desire of people with lived experience to fulfil leadership and governance roles.

Ultimately, mental health and social sector organisations having decision making processes that include people with lived experience is a social justice issue. People deserve to have a seat at the table when there are decisions being made that affect them.

The LEDGE Project will create pathways for people to use their lived experience for influence by co-creating a range of education, development and support options for people with varying levels of skills and experience. This includes people who are just beginning to think about getting involved right through to people who are already on boards and/or have governance experience. 

Through the LEDGE Project, LELAN will also support organisations to improve their policies and practices so they are inclusive and do not limit the genuine and skilled contribution of people with lived experience.

Visit our events page to learn more about current workshops and connection opportunities available for people with lived experience. 

Read our Guide for Enabling Lived Experience Involvement and Leadership to Thrive and Have Impact in Your Organisation developed to help organisation embed authentic involvement of people with lived experience at all levels.

The Activating Lived Experience Leadership (ALEL) Project [2019-2021]:

[In Partnership with UniSA, funded by the Fay Fuller Foundation and supported by the South Australian Mental Health Commission] 


The Activating Lived Experience Leadership (ALEL) Project is a partnership between LELAN and UniSA’s Mental Health and Suicide Prevention Research Group (MHSPRG). The Project is the most significant investment to date in this area of inquiry and action in South Australia (SA). 

The broad purpose of the ALEL Project is to examine and describe how lived experience advocacy and leadership embedded within the mental health ecosystem can be defined, recognised and utilised in SA. Our aim is to influence and effect ongoing system change through action and research.

The questions that underpin the project challenge the status quo in SA, and around Australia more broadly. Change is urgently needed to enable consumers and carers to participate in a leadership future developed by, for and with the peer community. The crucial need to develop effective strategies and pathways for lived experience leadership in SA is essential for people experiencing distress and mental health issues being valued differently. 

Read regular updates via the ALEL Project Newsletter. First Edition (December 2019).  Second Edition (April 2020).

Read the Summary Report of our System and Sector Leaders’ Summit: Dialoguing for Change session that was held in October 2019. The Summit explored systems conditions that hinder progress for lived experience leadership and offers solutions for moving forward. A follow-up Summit is planned for April 2020.

The Learning from Lived Experience (LfLE) Suicide Prevention Project [Jan-June 2020]:

[Funded by the South Australian Suicide Prevention Community Grants Scheme and supported by the South Australian Mental Health Commission] 


The Learning from Lived Experience (LfLE) Suicide Prevention Project involves interviewing people and creating shareable video and written content. People interviewed will have lived/living experience of suicide, suicide attempts and/or suicidal ideation and the conversations will specifically focus on their times of crisis and what helped or would have helped them most.

This specific focus has been chosen as suicide is often talked about generally or historically and people often share that at times of crisis service responses are inadequate or, frequently, even compound the distress they are experiencing.

Alternatives to hospital emergency departments and current responses need to be found; we know that people with lived experience have insights and a vital role to play in designing, leading and evaluating them. In addition to the resources created, information obtained through the project will be used by LELAN in our advocacy efforts for supporting people in crisis better.  

Read what we have been up to in the first LfLE Project Newsletter here.

Watch LfLE’s film Care not Treatment and read a snapshot of people’s experiences of suicide distress or crisis here.

The Human Rights & Mental Health Working Group (HRMHWG) [ongoing]:

[Co-convened by LELAN and the Mental Health Coalition of South Australia] 


The Human Rights and Mental Health Working Group (HRMHWG) is co-convened by LELAN and the Mental Health Coalition of SA. The HRMHWG brings together people interested in taking action in the area of human-rights and mental health issues for improved services and communities in South Australia. The group has been meeting since April 2019.