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

6. Develop integrated approaches between housing, justice, community and aged care sectors to facilitate access to mental health programs for people at risk of homelessness and other forms of disadvantage

Page last updated: December 2010

Department of Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs

  • Some of the projects being delivered under the National Partnership Agreement on Homelessness (cf action 5) facilitate access to mental health programs for people at risk of homelessness.
  • The Commonwealth, State and Territory Governments are working together to progress the homelessness reform agenda, which includes better integration of mainstream services with specialist homelessness services.
  • The States and Territories are delivering several multi-disciplinary initiatives under the National Partnership Agreement on Homelessness which will benefit people with mental health issues.
  • Reconnect is a community based early intervention program for young people aged 12 to 18 years, who are homeless or at risk of homelessness, and their families. Reconnect services provide counselling, group work, mediation and practical support to the whole family, to help break the cycle of homelessness. Reconnect providers also 'buy in' other services to meet the individual needs of clients, such as specialised mental health services. There are currently 107 Reconnect services located in metropolitan, regional, rural and remote communities around Australia.
  • FaHCSIA also funds Reconnect specialist services including Indigenous and Newly Arrived Youth Specialists. The Reconnect – Newly Arrived Youth Specialist providers target newly arrived young people aged 12 to 21 years who are homeless or at risk of homelessness and their families.
  • Personal Helpers and Mentors - provides one on one supports for people who cannot manage their daily activities or live independently because they have a severe mental illness, including connecting people to appropriate services and helping them navigate justice (where appropriate) and service systems.
  • National Disability Agreement - Early intervention and prevention is one area identified as a priority under the National Disability Agreement. An Early Intervention and Prevention Framework will be developed to increase Governments' ability to be effective with early intervention and prevention strategies and to ensure that clients receive the most appropriate and timely support by mid 2011.