State & territory jurisdictional reports: Activity relating to mental health reform prior to the implementation of the Fourth National Mental Health Plan

17. Establish regional partnerships of funders, service providers, consumers and carers and other relevant stakeholders to develop local solutions to better meet the mental health needs of communities

Page last updated: December 2010

Department of Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs

  • Targeted Community Care (mental health) Program Partnerships - FaHCSIA consulted widely with mental health stakeholders on the design and development of the three community based mental health initiatives for which it is responsible and is engaging with stakeholders in the current evaluation of the programs.
  • A PHaMs remote service model was developed to recognise and promote spiritual, cultural, mental and physical healing for Indigenous Australians living with mental illness in remote communities. Service providers are required to develop relationships and work closely with the whole community to deliver services appropriate to the community as well as individual needs.
  • With FaHCSIA funding the Mental Health Council of Australia conducted a series of Carer Engagement Workshops around Australia to assist families and carers to further develop coping and management skills for caring for and living with a person with a mental illness. They also provided carers with the opportunity to share their views on the most important issues and challenges they face as carers. Top of page
  • Through the Young Carer Respite and Information Services Program partnerships have been developed with funders, service providers, consumers and Centrelink on multiple levels. At the Commonwealth level FaHCSIA has established connections with Centrelink and the Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations, addressing education as well as youth issues.
  • FaHCSIA has also progressed issues facing young carer with State and Territory Education Departments, and meets regularly with service providers to discuss young carer needs. At the local level providers raise awareness of young carer issues in their community. Cross-referral processes have been established between providers of the program and Youth Pathways, managed by the Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations.
  • Community Investment Program - aims to improve the responsiveness and integration of local community services to increase participation of vulnerable people in community life. This initiative funds a wide range of projects that promote social connectedness and civic engagement (protective factors known to impact on mental health and well being), intervene early to avoid family crisis, establish positive goals that help avert destructive influences and encourage and assist individuals to achieve their full potential. Projects are listed by state and territory at FaHCSIA's website.
  • Volunteer Grants - this initiative is part of the Australian Government's ongoing commitment to supporting volunteering, and building social inclusion and community participation in Australian communities. Details are available at volunteer grants section of FaHCSIA's website. Top of page

Human services portfolio

  • The Child Support Program coordinates with FaHCSIA, the Child Support National Stakeholder Engagement Group (CSNSEG) to better link community, government and advocacy groups to share information and where possible promote a joined up response to parental needs. Supporting the national group are stakeholder engagement groups in each state who meet quarterly to improve information sharing and networks. In regional areas where the Child Support Program has a Regional Service Centre (co-located with Centrelink), local networks are facilitated in order to link up all local services who deal with separated families.