Latest news | 14 Oct 2021

Butterfly podcast honoured with MHS Journalism Award


The little podcast that could, launched only a year ago, is growing by leaps as it offers community, information, tips for recovery and stories of hope for people struggling with body image issues and eating disorders.

The Mental Health Service Awards has announced the winner of the Sound/Vision Journalism Award for 2021 as Butterfly: Let’s Talk – Talking Body Image and Eating Disorders.

The podcast, produced by Hobart based producer Ikin Media and the Butterfly Foundation, demystifies the mental health conditions with one of the highest mortality rates; eating disorders and body image issues.

The judges described the show as “a great podcast and a relatable, informative series that powerfully uses a variety of voices including people with lived experience and professional voices to illustrate a range of experiences.”

Butterfly teamed up with Ikin Media in the middle of lockdown in 2020 to create a safe experience that profiles people impacted by eating disorders. Guests with lived experience share their stories, including Their pathway to recovery. Experts offer evidence-based information, research findings and support. There are always tips around how people can create new and healthier relationships with their bodies and food.

“We are thrilled to be recognised by the Mental Health Service Awards,” said Butterfly CEO Kevin Barrow. “We know from research that hearing from others with similar stories helps people to feel less isolated and alone. The podcast also works to break down some of the stigmas around eating disorders and body image issues, by profiling people from diverse communities and backgrounds, and reaching a broader audience.”

The show is hosted by Sam Ikin, who has had his own struggles with an eating disorder. With his unique insight, he has created an authentic narrative show that helps to connect the community and provide ongoing hope and support. The show is produced from his studio in Hobart, Tasmania.

“It has been a privilege to be trusted with the stories of people who often suffer in isolation. They have been heart-breaking and sometimes tragic but, at the same time, inspiring and triumphant,” Mr Ikin said. “Staying true to those stories and the people who have told them to me has been my main priority; after that, I try to keep the show stimulating and engaging. I’m very proud of what we do.”

About eating disorders

Eating disorders are complex and enduring and have the highest mortality rate of any mental illness. At any one time, approximately 4% of the Australian population, or more than one million people, is suffering from an eating disorder. These serious mental illnesses have additional physical complications and are attributed to risk factors such as genetic vulnerability, psychological issues and socio-cultural influences. It is estimated that only 25% of people with an eating disorder seek treatment.


Media Contact

Alex Cowen – Communications Manager, Butterfly Foundation | 0497 008 716

Editor and producers note: Please include the following support line details in all media coverage of this story and refer to the Mindframe Media guidelines for safe reporting on eating disorders. Please include the following helpline message.

Help and Support

Anyone needing support with eating disorders or body image issues is encouraged to contact:

  • Butterfly National Helpline on 1800 33 4673 (1800 ED HOPE) or
  • Eating Disorders Victoria Helpline on 1300 550 23
  • For urgent support call Lifeline 13 11 14