Supporting aid worker wellbeing
Mandala Staff Support is a group of psychologists providing psychosocial support, training and resources to aid workers and their organisations. Our aim is to help build a stronger, healthier and more resilient aid sector.
Mandala Staff Support provides specialist psychological and psychosocial support services to humanitarian aid and development workers and their organisations, both in Australia and internationally.
The psychosocial approach
Mental health and wellbeing is influenced by a complex interplay of biological, psychological, social, spiritual and environmental factors. This acknowledges that the system surrounding staff is as important for their mental fitness as personal psychological factors.
Aid Worker Wellbeing
We offer confidential counselling, briefing, debriefing and crisis support services to aid workers. We also provide advice and resources to help aid workers look after their mental health and wellbeing.
Support of Managers
We help managers support their staff and volunteers through training, resources and advice on topics such as managing mental health issues, psychosocial first aid, and supporting staff wellbeing.
We help aid organisations to develop, and strengthen their systems of staff support. Services include Employee Assistance Programs (EAP), staff support audits, psychosocial recruitment and assessment.
Our team has a broad range of experience in the humanitarian emergency, disaster relief and international development sectors.
Our team has specialised skills in trauma and crisis support; psychosocial field projects; organisational development; cross-cultural psychology; human resources; and vocational counselling. This enables us to assist organisations to better support staff and volunteers working in high-pressure environments.
What we do
Our services are tailored to address the diverse psychosocial risks and support needs that aid workers may encounter across the different phases of a deployment or assignment.
Organisations can access our services on an as-needs basis or as part of ongoing service agreements.
Our core services comprise:
Specialist psychological and psychosocial support services for aid workers, including psychological assessment, preparation, briefing, debriefing and counselling.
Workshops and tailored training on a range of topics related to mental health, wellbeing, stress management and psychosocial risk management.
Tailored consultancy services assisting aid and development organisations to develop, enhance and sustain their own in-house systems of staff support from recruitment through to post-assignment.
Psychosocial support resources for aid workers, managers and organisations.
How we work
Our approach to staff support is integrated and systematic. As such, we work to strengthen aid worker wellbeing across a number of interconnected levels:
- At an individual level, by equipping aid workers, staff and volunteers with strategies and tools to enhance their own wellbeing in the field or at home, and providing them with access to psychological preparation, counselling and debriefing services;
- At a manager level, by training and mentoring managers in areas of staff support, psychological first aid and critical incident stress management, and supporting them to identity potential sources of psychosocial risk in the workplace;
- At an organisational level, by working with organisations to assess their current staff care systems and policies and implement, where necessary, more effective systems of support; and
- At a sector level, by being ongoing advocates for aid worker mental health and wellbeing.
We practice a resilience-based approach to staff support, where the emphasis is on continuously building up the coping mechanisms of individuals and organisations to enable faster recovery from crisis and adversity.
Get In Touch
Psychological Support Requests:
Consulting Rooms (Melbourne):
140 Princes St Carlton
468 Brunswick St Fitzroy
(03) 9005 0808 (8am-5pm Weekdays)
+61 (0)437 434 094 (After hours/ Crisis)