A Headspace for Batemans Bay was one of the big-ticket commitments both parties made during this year’s Federal Election campaign, as the year draws to close plans for the youth health service are advancing.
Dianne Kitcher, CEO of COORDINARE – South Eastern NSW PHN, says that once opened the service will deliver holistic, youth friendly, primary mental health services to young people aged 12-25, and support for their families and friends.
“The Headspace model is based on early intervention with the knowledge that adolescence and early adulthood is a critical time in a person’s life, with research showing that 75 per cent of mental health disorders emerge before the age of 25,” Ms Kitcher says.
“By ensuring help is accessed in those early stages, young people can get things back on track and reduce the likelihood of developing a mental illness later in life.”
Young people in Batemans Bay and surrounding towns including Milton and Ulladulla are the target with a request for proposals now open for a lead agency to establish and run the new Headspace from late 2020.
The new $1.53 million service will be one of six centres in South Eastern NSW funded by COORDINARE – South Eastern NSW PHN. Others include Bega, Nowra, Wollongong, and Goulburn which are managed by Grand Pacific Health and Queanbeyan where Marathon Health is the lead agency.
“The Eurobodalla, along with Milton and Ulladulla, have been identified as a location in high need of specialised youth mental health services,” Ms Kitcher says.
“Local GPs also identify the lack of local, accessible services for young people, particularly relating to mental health as a key need, so we are delighted that we are now at the point of seeking a lead agency to establish the new Headspace service across Batemans Bay and surrounding regions.”
Respondents to the request for proposal will be invited to offer new and innovative service delivery methods and to tailor Headspace services to best fit the unique needs and opportunities present in the Eurobodalla and southern Shoalhaven.
“Following our consultation earlier this year with young people, community members and service providers we are confident we understand the mental health needs of local young people and will be able to appoint a lead agency who will best meet these needs,” Ms Kitcher says.
For information about the request for proposal check the COORDINARE website.