Headspace Horsham celebrates first year of helping Wimmera youth

HEADSPACE Horsham is celebrating an exciting milestone this week.

The mental health service will mark one year since it opened its doors in Horsham this Friday with a party.

The centre started operating in May last year, and provides services for young people aged between 12 and 25.

Since May 2017, headspace Horsham has had 1357 occasions of service and has seen 352 clients.

Youth counsellor Brooke McInnes has worked at the centre since it opened.

She said mental health services for young people were greatly needed in the region.

“It’s a really big need in this area and that is shown by the huge number of people we’ve seen since we opened,” she said.

“The needs always been there, but the access to it has been the problem.

“We’re the only youth based health service in this area; we give young people the opportunity to seek health assistance in a friendly environment, whereas they might feel reluctant to go to places with a clinical feel.”

The centre offers counselling services, as well as co-located services from other health services such as Wimmera Uniting Care, Grampians Community Health and Wimmera Health Care Group.

Headspace Horsham is also home to a number of groups, including an LGBTI group and a Youth Reference Group.

“The Youth Reference Group gives advice in design of the centre, help organise events and fundraisers, and also sit in on recruitment interviews,” she said.

“The centre really is by young people for young people in our community.

“It’s an inviting space where anyone can just come in and chill, they don’t have to feel intimidated.”

Ms McInnes said headspace had a lot of big plans for the future.

“We’ve done a lot in the first year, and we’re still cementing our programs and staff,” she said.

“We’re looking at recruiting some allied health workers and are looking at getting Telehealth very soon.

“Telehealth allow clients to access help from other services via videolink; they can access GPs, psychologists and counsellors even in outlying towns or at school.”

The centre is working with secondary schools in Horsham, Stawell, Warracknabeal, Nhill and Edenhope to implement the service.​