Today, Federal Member for Bonner Ross Vasta MP convened a Bayside Mental Health Roundtable, which saw mental health experts including service providers, GP’s, first responders, schools and more, come together to start a conversation around mental health services on the Bayside.
It follows the recent Bayside Mental Health Survey that Mr Vasta put out, with over 500 responses and 97% of respondents confirming there was a great need in our community.
Reflecting on today’s event, Mr Vasta said it was a privilege to bring together a breadth of mental health and community providers to partake in positive and constructive conversations to workshop solutions for the Bayside.
“To make a difference in our community, it starts with a simple conversation. This was the aim of today’s Roundtable; bringing together experts in the mental health sector who are united by their shared passion for this space.”
“These individuals work across all parts of the community including (but not limited to) with children, men, women, young people, adults, older people, First Nations and LGBTQI+ meaning they have a deep understanding of what is happening and what needs to be done in our area specifically.”
“We had three levels of government in the room, from both sides, which clearly demonstrates the overwhelming need in our area. It also reiterates the mental health of our community is far greater than politics.”
Stride National Manager – Business Development and Bayside local, Ellen Heathwood, facilitated the Bayside Mental Health Roundtable.
“Today’s event provided a space for local providers, funders and other community representatives to have real and honest conversations around the mental health needs of this community with some great proposed solutions. With so many providers in the room, not to mention a representative from each levels of government, we were able to really challenge each other when it came to devising solutions to bridging gaps,” said Ms Heathwood.
“As a local, I regularly hear from the community that there is a need for more support for mental health services on the Bayside and today was a great way to sense check this. I was proud to be involved in this Roundtable.”
Mr Vasta extended his sincere thanks to those working in the Bayside’s Mental Health Sector.
“Listening to and learning about the life changing work they do in our community, it was clear that their dedication and passion is vital to supporting the livelihoods of our locals,” said Mr Vasta.
“I look forward to pursuing the outcomes of the Bayside Mental Health Roundtable and delivering for our community.”
Supporting mental health is a key priority of the Morrison Government, who made a $2.3 billion commitment to the sector as part of the recent 2021-22 Federal Budget. The Bayside Mental Health Roundtable forms part of Mr Vasta’s plan to ensure the funding included as part of the Budget will benefit the Bayside.
Do not hesitate to reach out for mental health support. Anyone experiencing distress can seek immediate advice and support through headspace (https://headspace.org.au/eheadspace/), Kids Helpline (1800 55 1800), Beyond Blue (1300 224 636), Lifeline (13 11 14), or the Government’s digital mental health gateway, Head to Health (www.headtohealth.gov.au).