The Hello. Campaign is a locally based community co-designed social marketing campaign focused on mental health awareness

Elbow Community Building Founder Sam Forbes worked on the Hello. Campaign as an employee of Lifeline Gippsland

In partnership with the Latrobe Health Assembly and the View From Here design studio, Lifeline Gippsland was commissioned to produce a mental health awareness campaign over 2018/19. The project was steered by an advisory group and involved co-design with several groups including:

  • Morwell Men’s Shed
  • Supported play group families in Moe
  • Secondary school students in Traralgon
  • Work for the Dole participants in Traralgon
  • Professionals network in Morwell
A key focus of the project was to develop an understanding of how well people in the Latrobe Valley understood mental health and wellbeing. To do this, a simple survey was designed based on the World Health Organisation’s definition of mental health:
a state of well-being in which an individual realises [their] own potential, can cope with the normal stresses of life, can work productively and fruitfully, and is able to make a contribution to [their] community
The survey tested the community’s understanding of the four key concepts within this definition. The results showed people had a good understanding about 3 out of the 4 factors that make up mental health. The outlier was the concept of making a contribution to the community. 
The campaign development then focused on this concept as the are to build awareness and explored this in detail with the co-design groups. 
Because the project had a focus on a positive and uplifting campaign that included awareness and behaviour change – the question became what can any community member do to improve mental health in the community?
Resoundingly the people involved suggested that small acts of kindness that brought people closer together was a contribution that anyone could make. Saying Hello to each other in the street was the simple and effective behaviour that could both bring awareness to the mental wellbeing of others and actually do something to improve it. 
A key insight from the research phase was that you can’t ask people R U OK if you don’t know them. 

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