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Mental Health for Youth program shortlisted in 2018 NSW Health Awards

06/11/2018

The Mental Health First Aid for Youth program was shortlisted at last night’s 2018 NSW Health Awards.

Georges River Council has collaborated with the South Eastern Sydney Local Health District (SESLHD) on the program since its inception in early 2017. It aims to provide the community with training in youth mental health first-responder skills, to help combat mental health issues among young people.

Georges River Council Mayor Kevin Greene commended SESLHD on the program’s achievements in supporting youth with mental health issues in Southern Sydney.

“Young people’s mental health is a priority for our community and I congratulate the South Eastern Sydney Local Health District on the recognition that this fantastic program has achieved,” said Mayor Greene.

“The program has already delivered more than 30 courses, arming over 400 members of the Southern Sydney community with the appropriate skills for combating youth mental health issues.”

“Linking young people with support early can reduce the severity and developmental impact of mental illness, and I am proud that Georges River Council is able to support this worthy initiative.”

“Council will be hosting training sessions with community members in November this year, and March 2019.”

75% of mental illnesses manifest before the age of 25, and suicide is the leading cause of death in children between 5 to 17 years old. The program reaches young people by providing Mental Health First Aid training to SES community members. 

Participants to date have included librarians, police officers, parents, sports club coaches and surf lifesavers. The program’s overall objective is to equip 10% of adults supporting young people in SESLHD with mental health first responder skills.

The initiative was co-designed by SESLHD, NSW Department of Education, Central and Eastern Primary Health Network, NSW Department of Family and Community Services, NSW Police, local councils, youth services including headspace Bondi Junction and young people. 

If you want to register to attend a training session, please email Nicole Watkins at nwatkins@georgesriver.nsw.gov.au or call Georges River Council on 02 9330 6400. For information on Georges River Council, please visit www.georgesriver.nsw.gov.au.