After years of lobbying from both Council and the community, young people will soon have access to a local headspace youth mental health service.
We welcome the recent announcements by Gladys Liu MP, Federal Member for Chisholm, Keith Wolahan, Liberal candidate for Menzies, and Carina Garland, Labor candidate for Chisholm about a commitment of $1million a year for a headspace service in the Menzies/Chisholm area.
Cr Michelle Kleinert knows all too well about the impacts on young people with the lack of mental health services in Manningham. Michelle started fighting for a headspace service during her first Mayoral term in 2016/2017 and her passion has not waned.
Now in her second term as Mayor, Michelle has been actively working on raising the awareness of the biggest health issue facing Manningham: youth mental health.
Manningham young people along with Cr Michelle Kleinert recently met with Keith Wolahan to share their experiences and the consequences of the lack of services. The young people were very clear, they need the support and early intervention services that headspace offers. Within their age group headspace is known and trusted.
“Young people in Manningham are facing a mental health crisis.
“With no dedicated youth mental health service, those suffering are facing wait times of months for services outside of the municipality. We are transport disadvantaged with limited public transport options, young people are facing extensive travel times to get to the nearest headspace,” said Cr Kleinert.
With youth mental health already worsening before COVID-19, in Manningham, we are now seeing a 48% increase in demand for these services in the past year alone. We will continue to advocate for the service to be delivered in Manningham, where the demand and impact will be the most beneficial. We are committed to engage our community and raise awareness of the need for dedicated local youth mental health services.
Manningham looks forward to working with the Federal members to deliver an accessible service for our young people. We are open to partner with any organisation that is expressing an interest in delivering this service in Manningham.
Anyone experiencing distress can seek immediate advice and support through Lifeline (13 11 14), Kids Helpline (1800 551 800), or the Government’s digital mental health gateway, Head to Health (www.headtohealth.gov.au).
The Mayor also notes, “Whitehorse City Council welcomes this bi-partisan commitment to the health of young people in Whitehorse. Irrespective of the outcome of the Federal election, we look forward to working with our local Federal members for great local outcomes. The support from both sides of politics reflects consistent and effective advocacy from Council for our community.”