Building works at the new headspace for the region have commenced, with Relationships Australia joining COORDINARE – South Eastern NSW PHN and Fiona Phillips MP, Member for Gilmore to announce the location of the centre at 1/11 Clyde Street, Batemans Bay.
According to Alison Brook, CEO of Relationships Australia Canberra & Region, the location was selected due to its proximity to the town’s centre and Council’s proposed youth precinct.
“We consulted with a number of young people and they loved this location. They felt it was in a great spot next to the shops and cafes, and easily accessible to young people in Batemans Bay,” said Ms Brook.
The centre will include a large group space, reception and waiting area, a GP room and four other consult rooms, as well as meeting rooms, office space and amenities.
“A local feel will be incorporated into the design of the building with artwork from our local Aboriginal community and cool coastal colours used.”
Outreach services will also be provided to Moruya and Ulladulla (two days per week in each location), with a mobile office being set up to provide additional outreach services between Ulladulla and Narooma based on community needs and demand.
“Recruitment is well underway with much interest and a passionate and skilled team forming. We are really pleased that we have managed to recruit local people with a deep connection and understanding of the specific issues faced by young people and their families in Batemans Bay and surrounding areas,” said Ms Brook.
The construction of the centre, which is being undertaken by Spaceful – a Sydney-based builder specialising in commercial property building work and fit-out, is expected to be complete by late 2020/early 2021.
In the meantime, young people will continue to be able to access youth friendly, confidential mental health and wellbeing services through the current headspace service, set up by South Eastern NSW PHN in partnership with headspace National as an interim response to the impacts of the bushfires.
“This service will continue to operate until the full headspace centre is established later this year,” said Dianne Kitcher, CEO of COORDINARE – South Eastern NSW.
“We will work to ensure a smooth transition for all accessing support during this period so young people continue to get the help they need without interruption,” she added.
Fiona Phillips MP, Member for Gilmore, said young people in Batemans Bay had been through a lot recently with the drought, bushfires and now COVID-19.
“These experiences can certainly impact our mental health and our ability to get through these tough times. Bolstering local mental health services has been a top priority for me, particularly when it comes to the need for a full headspace for the Batemans Bay community and I’m thrilled to see this centre coming to fruition,” said Ms Phillips.
“I know it will make a real difference to the lives of young people in our community – this is a real win for our community.”
For more information about headspace support currently available visit: https://headspace.org.au/headspace-centres/batemans-bay/ or phone 1800 718 383.
headspace Batemans Bay is one of six centres in South Eastern NSW funded by COORDINARE – South Eastern NSW PHN through the Australian Government’s PHN Program.