In July, Elena from the BEING policy team attended the film premiere of Gratus. Gratus, which in Latin means ‘thankful’, is a short film about experiencing mental illness and the role gratitude can play in recovery. The film was created by nine people with a lived experience of mental illness as part of a 10-week documentary studies program delivered by Bus Stop Films and 3 Bridges Community.

The premiere night held at Dendy cinema in Sydney City included a variety of speakers, a behind the scenes video to show the creative process and then a screening of Gratus. Craig Hamilton, previous broadcaster for the ABC and mental health advocate and author, spoke about his experience of mental illness and the journey to where he is today. There was a strong message about the importance of community and breaking down stigma around mental illness.

Gratus is a powerful film. It is highly creative and includes symbolic imagery to describe the experience of living with mental illness. This includes participants presenting their experience of mental illness and recovery in a different way. The film will be entered in film festivals and there is currently a second film in the works.

BEING would like to congratulate all involved in the making of the film and on a successful premiere night. To read a blog post by Bus Stop Films called ‘Gratus for the memories’ about the making of Gratus click here. For more information about 3 Bridges Community and the programs they offer visit their website.