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Behind the Smile, a story of life after loss.


Few people have the drive and dedication of Mitch McPherson. When his younger brother Ty took his own life in 2013, Mitch, a glazier by trade, turned the devastating loss into the successful suicide prevention charity SPEAK UP! Stay ChatTY. It is this phenomenal work which lead to his being awarded Tasmania's Young Australian of the Year in 2017.

Since then, Mitch has spoken to over 600 events which include school groups, workplaces and sporting clubs and is dedicated to spreading the message that nothing is so bad that you can’t talk about it.

Mitch’s vision is that SPEAK UP! Stay ChatTY will become a national charity, with a focus on delivering programs in schools and sporting clubs around Australia to increase awareness and remove the stigma surrounding mental health.

Talking Points

Behind the Smile - A Story of Grief and Loss

Mitch tells the moving story of his brother’s life and suicide to help others recognise warning signs that there may be a struggle behind someone’s smile. He speaks plainly and simply, connecting to those who need to hear these messages - the young, sportspeople, tradies and more.

It’s a powerful story to hear, and Mitch’s experience shows us all the importance of looking out for those around us. It might even save the life of someone you love.

Lifestyle & Wellbeing

  • Mental Health


  • Grief & Loss
I have seen Mitch’s presentation on a number of occasions and it never fails to move me. His story is told with authenticity, vulnerability and genuine emotion, but it always leaves the audience feeling hopeful and optimistic. Mitch used a deeply sad personal situation to motivate a movement about hope for the future and looking out for each other. When he tells this story you cannot help but be greatly moved by it. Relationships Australia Tasmania
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