New Headspace Centres in ‘Areas of Greatest Need’
6 January 2012 at 12:13 pm
Local health and community organisations have expressed strong interest in running 15 new youth focused mental health centres around the country, according to the National Youth Mental Health Foundation, headspace.
Headspace CEO, Chris Tanti said since the Federal Government announced the regional locations of the centres, to be opened in 2013, local groups had stepped up to deliver quality bids that would form the basis of local services.
Tanti said, “We’ve had strong buy in from local communities around Australia, who are clearly excited about the fact their areas will be getting a headspace centre.”
In October 2011, the federal Government announced funding for the establishment of 15 new headspace centres around Australia– to provide early intervention mental health services to Australians aged 12-25.
Following investigations to identify the areas of greatest need across Australia, the new centres will be located in:
- Sydney Outer West and Blue Mountains
- Melbourne Outer East (Ringwood/Knox)
- Sunshine Coast
- Port Macquarie
- Melbourne South East (Dandenong)
- Lower Hunter
- North Sydney
- Perth North East
- Upper Spencer Gulf
The new headspace centres are expected to be operational in 2013 – bringing the total number of headspace centres to 55. The 2010 Federal Budget committed $197 million to funding headspace, which will see 90 centres open by 2015.
The headspace model brings together local services, such as Divisions of General Practitioners or youth health services, to run the centre, with funding from the Commonwealth Government. headspace provides early intervention mental health and broader support to young Australians and has already helped more than 50,000 people deal with difficult times.
According to headspace, selecting the operators of the 15 main headspace centres involves two stages. The first stage seeks to identify those local agencies in the area that have the capability to operate a centre.
Once those agencies are identified the second stage begins. If one agency is identified, that agency commencesa business planning process with headspace. If two or more agencies meet the criteria, a selected tender process commences where those agencies work to demonstrate that they are in the best position to run a headspace centre.
The first stage has just been completed, with applicants currently being notified about whether they have made it through to stage 2. The successful agencies will be announced in March this year.
“Local support for headspace means that, in some cases, local groups had already organised themselves, and appointed a lead agency, before we had even made the announcement,” Tanti said.
“While that in no way indicates whether the group will eventually be successful, it gives an indication of the level of engagement.”
For more information on headspace, visit http://www.headspace.org.au/