Professor Graham Martin pictured with CEO of United Synergies Sue Scheinpflug.
Professor Graham Martin pictured with CEO of United Synergies Sue Scheinpflug. Geoff Potter / Sunshine Coast Daily

Understanding self injury

IN A rare opportunity for the people of Gympie, Professor Graham Martin OAM will be speaking on the topic of self- injury at the Civic Centre next Tuesday night.

Prof Martin is a professor of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry at the University of Queensland, a national advisor to the Australian government on suicide prevention; director of the Centre of Suicide Prevention Studies in Young People and winner of the Rowe-Zonta International Prize in 2010.

Prof Martin is also the author of The Australian National Epidemiological Study of Self-Injury which he conducted in 2008.

The alarming results of this groundbreaking study showed that 8% of the Australian population had, in their lifetime, engaged in deliberated self-injury.

The study was the subject of a documentary screened on SBS last year called The Silent Epidemic.

The Cooloola Suicide Prevention Network is hosting the evening and is encouraging anyone to come along.

Network chairwoman Ruth Polley said Prof Martin was a remarkable speaker with a wealth of knowledge who "speaks normal everyday language".

"The network hopes to see a range of people attending the evening including GPs, educators, counsellors, psychologists, youth workers, as well as general community members who may wish to increase their understanding of this issue," Ms Polley said.

"The evening costs only $50, which I'm sure you agree, is a most amazing price for such a formidable speaker."

The evening starts at 6.30pm and registration can be made by contacting Ruth at Lifeline (which is sponsoring the event) on 5480 3400 or emailing

For immediate advice or support call Lifeline on 13 11 14 or Kids Helpline on 1800 55 1800.

For information, advice and referral on mental illness, including self-injury behaviour, contact the SANE Helpline on 1800 18 SANE (7263) go online via

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