Panning for Gold: The personal journey of mental health wellness and its relationships with Planning Alternatives Tomorrows with Hope (PATH)

Matthew Lyndon Armstrong, Pat Dorsett


This study explored how the Planning Alternatives Tomorrows with Hope (PATH) process could enhance and strengthen an individual’s personal journey of recovery. This article utilised the knowledge base of members of a Community of Practice, located in Brisbane Australia. Members had a deep concern and passion to promote and strengthen wellbeing for people who live with the experience of mental ill health. They were invited to form a focus group to explore the use of PATH and its relationship with mental health wellness. After contemplating and reflecting on an example of the PATH process, the focus group explored opportunities for PATH to become one of many wellness resources for people experiencing and overcoming mental ill health. Through the exploration of personal meaning, storytelling and community connection (anchored in the visuals and graphics of the PATH example), the study found that PATH can make a valuable contribution by restoring some of the power inbalances in traditonal service frameworks and enhancing personal self direction.

Keywords: mental health distress, practitioners, recovery, facilitation, creativity, planning

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