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Looking for my next
opportunity
to make a change.

Public speaking: where your words have the power to move mountains, inspire change, and maybe even get a standing ovation (or at least a polite golf clap)
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This is me

Anushka is a passionate psychologist driving advocacy and change for minority communities across Australia. Anushka is the founder of Umeed Psychology, a psychology private practice and social enterprise which aims to provide accessible, culturally informed mental health care. Where clients from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds feel safe, included, heard and represented. In an effort to de-stigmatise mental health and create better access to mental health care in multicultural communities, Anushka has co-founded "The Man(sik) Project" - a not-for-profit which aims to finance mental health support for those who can't afford it.  

 

Anushka is a passionate advocate for youth mental health working as a school psychologist and having published research on the topic of "Student Trauma" in the Taylor & Francis "Leadership & Policy in Schools" Journal.  

 

As an Ambassador for the Australia New Zealand Mental Health Association Anushka strives to make a global impact when it comes to mental health. Anushka is also the co-founder for The Shore Project (a podcast which explores migrant challenges and how to overcome them), founding member of Guardians of The Pacific (a charity which aims to support Fiji through poverty alleviation, education and individual welfare) and a co-author for "Undefeated" a Professional Migrant Women project. 

Anushka is a finalist for the 2023 7News Victorian Young Achiever Awards for the Saward Dawson Social Impact & Community Service Award.

Anushka has spoken and presented at over 40 different platforms both nationally and globally. This includes panel events, conferences, webinars, keynotes, universities, workshops, community events, national radio, other media & more.

Culturally Responsive  Psychologist 
Mental Health Advocate 

 Founder   Umeed Psychology

Co-founder    The Man(sik) Project

Keynote Speaker

Young Achiever of the Year Finalist

Published Researcher

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I passionately advocate 
for mental health equity. Why?

Let me tell you a little about myself. 

 

I'm a New Zealand born Fiji Indian who was raised in Australia. Growing up bicultural was a rich and confusing experience. When I first moved to Australia I distinctly remember my friends being excited about tea time. I was like how cool everyone really loves tea here, I love tea! Of course then I learnt tea actually meant dinner. 

Seriously?  I’m Fijian Indian. When you say tea time at 5pm I picture masala chai and parle g not a full blown dinner. It’s been 19 years, this tiny cultural nuance still confuses me. 

 

As I got older funny little things like this would continue to pop up, until gradually the cultural differences went from funny to frustrating. I was 18 when I first saw a therapist and multiple thereafter in my early twenties. 

 

Each experience was the same as the last - friendly and educated practitioners who lacked cultural awareness and provided thoroughly impractical solutions. 

This was a common experience amongst my community. In fact it still is. I bumped into my cousin last weekend and she said to me “Anushka, I cannot express the frustration of spending 6 out of 10 therapy sessions explaining culture specific problems. I feel like an educator in a space where I’m supposed to be a client. 

"They just don’t get it!”  

 

“They just don’t get it” is the reason I became a psychologist and founded Umeed Psychology. 

In Australia where mental health care is grounded in a eurocentric lens, culturally responsive practice often takes a backseat. We have specialized mental health support for so many different demographics, no one’s referring military veterans to speak to a child psychologist.

 

So WHY in a country where half the population are first or second generation migrants are we expecting culturally diverse individuals to make do with culturally unresponsive mental health services? 

Through presenting & speaking opportunities I aim to educate, inform and raise awareness around culturally responsive practice. My hope is to de-stigmatise mental health through mental health literacy. Through my keynote presentations and motivational talks I aim to leave my audience feeling informed, safe, represented and understood.

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