“We seek a future where everyone with a mental illness / mental health, addiction and/or disability issue and those who care for them will have access to effective treatment and support from communities and providers who have the knowledge and competence to offer services that promote recovery.”


To achieve its vision, the International Initiative for Mental Health Leadership (IIMHL) and International Initiative for Disability Leadership (IIDL) provide an international infrastructure to identify and exchange information about effective leadership, management and operational practices in the delivery of services. It encourages the development of organizational and management best practice within mental health, addiction and disability services through collaborative and innovative arrangements among leaders.


  • Provide a single international point of reference for key mental health, addiction and disability leaders
  • Strengthen workforce development and mentoring of mental health, addiction and disability leaders
  • Identify and disseminate best management and operational practices
  • Foster innovation and creativity
  • Expand the knowledge of:
    • Building community capacity
    • Implementing best practices for consumer recovery
    • Expanding methodologies for integration with other health and social systems
  • Promote international collaboration and research
  • Provide assistance to international organizations such as the World Health Organization (WHO), Organisation for Economic Development (OECD), and sponsoring countries to support low and middle income countries to increase their ability to operate community based recovery systems.
Summary of relevant work: 

Leadership Exchange

IIMHL was created with the belief that ­effective leadership will promote the best possible outcomes for people who use mental health and addiction services, and their families. IIMHL is focussed on developing mental health leaders, by providing opportunities for them to build their networks for rapid knowledge exchange.

IIMHL’s signature initiative is the International Leadership Exchange,  a week-long learning event which is held every 16 months, in a different region of the world.

Knowledge Transfer

While the Leadership Exchanges are the key process to share innovation and best practice, through all its activities, IIMHL aims to ­share best and promising practices and facilitate the rapid transfer of knowledge between countries. As a result, IIMHL supports knowledge transfer through the promotion of workshops/training/education/webinars, support of learning collaboratives, and information dissemination between Exchanges.

Best and promising practices can then be applied through changing practice (service delivery) and strengthening leadership capacity. IIMHL’s activities during 2016 (in addition to supporting ongoing partnerships and collaborations among members) include:

  • Update  - a twice-monthly email that includes information on the latest News; Research; Policy documents; and Webinars on best practice
  • Make it So Newsletters
  • Meetings and Presentations
  • Provision of Requested Information from members.

International Initiative for Disability Leadership

IIMHL is supporting a sister organization, IIDL - International Initiative for Disability Leadership, which works to achieve the best possible outcomes for people with a disability. IIDL is a collaboration of four countries: Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and Republic of Ireland. IIDL organises systems for international networking, innovation sharing and problem solving across countries and agencies.


P O Box 189
New Hampshire 03431

+64 021 217 9992
Seeking collaboration with: 
Other organizations
Experts by experience/service users
Policy makers
New Zealand
United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
United States of America