What happened when six towns and three organisations came together to reclaim regional mental wellbeing?

Our Town is an 11-year, $15 million mental health initiative funded by the Fay Fuller Foundation implemented in partnership with TACSI and Clear Horizon. Read about what we did, what we learned, and what we’d do differently next time.

Shaped with regional communities for regional communities, Our Town aims to build the capabilities of regional towns in South Australia to develop community-based responses to mental health and wellbeing with an eye to scaling what works, and influencing regional policy.

The initiative gives towns and regions the power and opportunity to define what’s best for their community, so that they can reclaim their mental wellbeing.

This report is an honest reflection of the Support Teams’ (Fay Fuller, TACSI, Clear Horizon) experience of Our Town in 2020: what the Town Teams achieved, what worked and what didn’t, and most importantly, what we learned and what we would do differently next time.

Read what we learned

Our Town: Catalysing communities to lead local change

We learned that the initiative did its best work when we put community at the heart

Niall Fay, CEO, Fay Fuller Foundation

Why this report?

We wrote this reflection from the perspective of the support team, gathering and expanding on our biggest learnings when it comes to starting community-led work well and then asking the community to provide their own reflections and honest feedback.

While this publication focuses on Support Team learnings, future pieces will centre the voice and experience of the community as they take the reins on leading change in their own towns.

This reflection is intended to inform our own future practice, and to help anyone planning or leading place-based change, especially in the early years of an initiative.

Communities are the experts in what’s going on in their lives and we need to listen to that.

Amie, Our Town Mid Murray

Read the report

Download the report

Get involved

To support what is shared in this piece, we’ve created a number of tools and resources so that you can build on from the principles, practices and learnings, which we have learned are essential for community-led change.

Download the toolkits

To follow the progress of the initiative and towns, join our mailing list to be notified of upcoming publications at ourtownsa.com.au.

You can also get in touch with the TACSI Our Town team here.