More young people now have access to mental-health services, thanks to the renovation and expansion of headspace Albany.
headspace Albany and Youth Focus Great Southern now share a bigger and better new home, creating greater opportunities to support more young people and their families in a safe, inclusive and confidential space.
Around twice the size of the previous centre, the new headspace Albany has seven counselling rooms, including two large enough to host a family or group counselling session, as well as a GP room.
headspace Albany manager Andrew Wenzel says the new centre will enable the team to provide much-needed services to the area’s young people, while being more welcoming and inclusive.
“We worked extensively with our Youth Reference Group, and took on feedback from our centre-friendliness surveys, to ensure we created a space that felt safe, welcoming, inclusive and not too clinical – with plenty of breakout zones.”
headspace Advisory Committee member Chloe Anderson was closely involved in the renovation process.
“I’ve really enjoyed seeing the progress of the building and being able to have input into decisions being made about the building; things like the way the reception and waiting area will be, and the feel of the layout to make sure it will feel friendly, welcoming and inclusive,” Ms Anderson says.
Mr Wenzel is delighted that the new centre is open. “It’s been a long process, but it’s enabled us to stay in a location that is central and easy to get to.”
“It feels like a celebration,” Ms Anderson continues. “We can celebrate the space being there for young people in the community and being able to support more young people.
“The biggest thing is having space to support more young people. I hope it will make young people feel like there is a place to go for them, where you will feel welcome, and won’t feel judged, and be able to feel better about your future if you’re going through a tough time.”
headspace CEO Jason Trethowan says the new-look headspace centre will provide more opportunities for young people to seek support.
“With two in five young people experiencing mental illness, access to mental health support has never been more important,” Mr Trethowan says.
“headspace Albany has proven to be a vital service for the community, a place young people know they can go for youth-friendly mental health care, including work and study support.”
This service is supported by WA Primary Health Alliance under the Australian Government’s Primary Health Networks Program.