NEW funding to boost training on mental health for youth workers in regional and rural areas across the State will improve the lives of thousands of young people across NSW, and likely prevent significant numbers of youth suicides, says the NSW Minister for Mental Health, Jai Rowell.
This week the state government announced it will subside the education of youth workers currently working across regional, rural and remote NSW, so they can undergo the Youth Mental Health First Aid course. The course educates workers on identifying, triaging and referring mental health issues.
Youth Action, the peak body for youth affairs in NSW, has been campaigning for $250,000 in funding for this issue for over a year.
Youth Action’s managing director Katie Acheson said the NSW government’s response was extremely welcome.
“This announcement shows the NSW government has been listening carefully to the voice of youth in regional, rural, and remote areas,” Ms Acheson said.
“There is a genuine mental health crisis in regional NSW.
"Mental illness rates and suicide rates have stayed high over the past 30 years, especially for young men. In some very remote areas, youth suicide rates are six times higher than the state average...