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10 Jul 2017

The Turnbull Government announced (8 June 2017) that $73 million will be provided to support the mental health of Australian children. The funding investment is in two new mental health programs “to ensure Australian children and young people receive the support they need during their school years”.

According to the Government’s media release, under the National Support for Child and Youth Mental Health Program, training and resources on mental health issues will be provided to people who regularly interact with pre-schoolers, primary and high school aged children. This includes teachers, school communities, doctors, nurses and other healthcare professionals. beyondblue will partner with headspace and Early Childhood Australia to run a $52.6 million program which will provide tools for teachers to support kids with mental health concerns, and provide resources for students to help them to deal with any challenges they may be going through. headspace will also provide rapid response services with the delivery of direct intervention in instances where self-harm is occurring amongst students. Should a suicide occur within the school or the local community, the program will also provide the opportunity for teachers to conduct specialist counselling services supported by beyondblue and headspace either directly themselves or because someone close to them might be suffering.

In addition to support for teachers and school communities, Emerging Minds will deliver a $20.5 million program to support clinical and non-clinical professionals who work with children to identify, support and refer children at risk of mental health difficulties and promote resilience building. This program will be developed and implemented in partnership with the Parenting Research Centre, the Australian National University, the Australian Institute of Family Studies, and the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners. 

Published: 10 Jul 2017