WBHHS Health Hero - Geoff Richardson

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Geoff Richardson
Social Worker in The Lighthouse (Crisis Support Service)

How long have you been with WBHHS?
10 years

How do you describe what you do?
I engage with people who may be expressing emotional and / or mental distress with the aim of gaining their trust so I can walk alongside them to achieve the recovery goals they identify.

What’s best about your job?
Having the privilege of people talking with me when they are feeling at a low point and trusting me with their personal stories, and then seeing their recovery journey through the most appropriate services we can provide.

What was your path into health care?
Working in the USA for 14 yrs on Outdoor Camps with adults and children with physical, social, emotional, and mental health needs and being told:
‘Look at the person not the wheelchair’
‘Everyone has a story, make judgments but don’t be judgmental’.
This sparked my interest in learning about mental illness, advocacy, acceptance, and integration.

What does being part of a team mean to you?
Working with people where collaboration, support, fun, learning, discussion, ideas, laughter, and the awareness of self and others is an everyday occurrence
I am lucky enough to work within a team and a mental health service where this is the culture.

When you’re not at work, you are…
An Ambassador for CoralWatch – a citizen science organization based at the University of QLD that monitors the health of corals and provides education and information to others about what they can do to help protect coral and the wider environment.  https://coralwatch.org – check it out!

What do you enjoy about living in Wide Bay?
The ocean, the beaches, the strength of community in times of adversity, the work life balance.

Tell us a fun fact about you.
I once brought a red sofa; my wife has never let me choose furniture again!

What song are you listening to most right now?
Good Day for a Good Day – Michael Franti & Spearhead https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g71lxw--rPM&pp=ygUZYSBnb29kIGRheSBmb3IgYSBnb29kIGRheQ%3D%3D – have a listen!