For Griffith University’s A Better Future for All series, in partnership with HOTA, Home of the Arts, Kerry O’Brien welcomed Hugh van Cuylenburg and Professor Patrick McGorry AO.

Australia is in the grip of an epidemic of anxiety, particularly affecting children and young adults. According to government health figures, 3.3 million Australians suffer from anxiety disorders. An estimated 500,000 children and adolescents have experienced mental illness in the past year.

Precise causes are still an educated guess but the uncertainties of the digital age, the pressures of social media, early exposure to a world of problems headlined by climate change, and most recently the global pandemic have obviously contributed. The question is: how should we respond?

Both Hugh and Patrick are experts in the field and have skills and insights that are invaluable. The help they have provided families to support young ones in crisis is internationally recognised.

This conversation focused on deepening our understanding and embolden our confidence in dealing with a health problem affecting the entire community. For anyone concerned with how we address one of the most significant public policy issues of the present time, this livestream is not to be missed.

Hugh van Cuylenburg

Bestselling author and co-host of the popular podcast The Imperfects, Hugh has been working in education for more than 15 years. He is the founder of The Resilience Project, which brings into focus decades of active campaigning to educate young people and their parents about positive mental health strategies.

Professor Patrick McGorry AO

Professor Patrick McGorry is a psychiatrist known world-wide for his development and scaling up of early intervention and youth mental health services and for mental health innovation, advocacy and reform. He is Professor of Youth Mental Health at the University of Melbourne, founding editor of the journal Early Intervention in Psychiatry, and the first psychiatrist to become a Fellow of the Academy of Science.

In 2010 Professor McGorry was selected as Australian of the Year and became an Officer of the Order of Australia.