In the lead up to Screen Forever, Ausfilm, Fox Studios Australia, Netflix, and Industrial Light & Magic, and have partnered to work with a new wellbeing enterprise led by Ben Steel, that will up-skill 60 production and post-production leaders in mental health first aid training. 

“Mental health first aid teaches you how to notice the early signs of mental health challenges before a condition worsens, and how to intervene. Screen leaders learning these skills will feel more confident in knowing what to do, what to say, and how to offer support to a colleague or employee,” says Debra Richards, Netflix Director APAC Studio & Production Affairs.

Ausfilm CEO, Kate Marks says “Access to this essential training for screen industry leaders across physical production, VFX, picture and sound post-production and music services, targeting people who manage teams is vital. Many of our industry leaders are not trained or know how to initiate and navigate sensitive and supportive mental health conversations with staff. We are honoured to be partnering with Fox Studios Australia, Industrial Light & Magic, and Netflix on this very important and timely initiative.”

The initiative is offering 60 free place across 5 online Mental Health First Aid courses commencing in June 2022. The partners are seeking expressions of interest from producers, line-producers/production managers, post producers, post supervisors and VFX producers interested in learning this valuable mental health prevention and intervention skill.

“It was important for us to put our weight behind this initiative and make an overall contribution to help support the growth and improvement of the mental health and wellbeing of our sector. It’s something that we as a company believe in and are pleased to support access to training that we know will have meaningful impact,” says Luke Hetherington, Executive in Charge of Industrial Light & Magic’s Sydney and Singapore studios.

“The existence of this initiative in our sector interrupts the stigma around mental health. It is important for us to support and promote access to training that we know will have a meaningful impact in the screen industry” says John Hughes, Head of Fox Studios Australia.

Ben Steel, filmmaker behind ABC documentary The Show Must Go On is involved in the initiative, but remains tightlipped about his new wellbeing enterprise for the screen sector, “I have been working with production and screen business expert Margaret Tillson behind-the-scenes all last year on this – and we can’t wait to reveal our full plans to the industry later this week,” says Steel.

If you are a leader in production or post-production and you’d like to express interest in attending one of the courses – register HERE

For more information contact Ben Steel

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