Mindgardens introduces the Lived Experience Framework

May 7, 2024
Announcements Drug & Alcohol Disorders Mental Health Neurological Disorders Psychosis Youth

Mindgardens, a leading translational research organisation specialising in disorders related to the brain, emotions, nervous system and cognitive processes, is proud to announce the launch of the Lived Experience Engagement Framework.

Catherine O’Donnell, Director of Lived Experience at Mindgardens, said the ground-breaking framework underscores the organisation’s commitment to fostering inclusive and effective participation of individuals with lived and living experience across all its work in research, clinical practice and service innovation.

“The Lived Experience Engagement Framework outlines Mindgardens’ approach to engaging with people who have direct experience with mental health, drug and alcohol issues, and neurological disorders,” Ms O’Donnell said.

“It provides comprehensive guidance for all stakeholders working with our organisation, including researchers, clinicians, and support staff. By aligning with our core values and strategic focus areas, this framework ensures all Mindgardens’ work in service transformation is built around the real experiences and perspectives of people living with these disorders and their families and carers.”

The Framework is underpinned by key principles, including:

  1. Safety and Effectiveness: Engaging with individuals who have lived and living experience is valuable only when it is safe and effective for everyone involved. The framework establishes protocols to ensure that interactions are respectful, transparent, and beneficial.
  2. Best Practice Adherence: Mindgardens is committed to upholding best practices in all its endeavors. By following this framework, Mindgardens maintains a high standard of engagement that respects the unique perspectives of those with lived experience.
  3. Expectations for Research Partners: The Lived Experience Engagement Framework clearly articulates Mindgardens’ expectations for research partners. Mindgardens encourages all partners to embrace the same principles when collaborating with the organisation.

Ms O’Donnell said the framework would promote authentic inclusion and capacity building.

We genuinely value and include lived experience perspectives in our decision-making processes. Transparency and consistency are at the heart of our approach and we want to ensure no one feels stigmatised, defined by or discriminated against for their experiences,” Ms O’Donnell said.

Mindgardens is dedicated to enhancing our organisational capacity to incorporate lived experience perspectives across all aspects of our work. This commitment extends to our research partners as well.”

Professor Jackie Curtis, Executive Director at Mindgardens, expressed her enthusiasm for the framework.

“Our goal is to create a collaborative ecosystem where everyone’s voice matters. The Lived Experience Engagement Framework empowers us to achieve this vision,” Professor Curtis said.