Simply Helping Michael to Become a Champion for Lived Experience

With a successful background spanning several decades within the community services industry, support worker Michael made a decision in 2021 to join the Simply Helping Central and Northern Melbourne team.

At the time, Michael was working part-time and felt some trepidation over whether he would ever be able to work full-time hours again and whether an organisation could support him and meet him on his journey. Having been diagnosed with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and experiencing regular anxiety, Michael’s mental health and wellbeing journey impacted his view on life, his identity, and his confidence in supporting others.

Simply Helping Central and Northern Melbourne recognises Michael as a salt-of-the-earth support worker who champions the value of lived experience in mental health. Michael’s journey at Simply Helping has seen him excel in supporting people in the community to achieve their goals and build independence and capacity with daily living. Through grit and self-determination to build on his strengths, Michael has flourished in a workplace that celebrates his personality, skills, and lived experience. “My own experience with my mental health and the life challenges this has presented, helps me to see things differently and relate to people. I know what it feels like not to be understood, which makes me even more focused on understanding others. Because I enjoy what I do, I don’t ever feel like I’m working; it feels like I’m relating to people about things that are important to them.”

Michael highlights the importance of his lived experience in helping him understand “how people react to things and how to adjust his support to ensure he is focused on the person’s goals or recovery journey”. He says, “Understanding what people like and what goals they want to achieve is so important to me. Some people can clearly explain it, but others can’t, so I will always think about different ways to uncover this. My own experience with mental health helps me think about different strategies.”

To learn more about Simply Helping Central and Northern Melbourne support services and to connect with our team, visit or call (03) 9661 0499.

Simply Helping Michael's Picture