Mental Awareness Sessions
Jeremey Forbes from HALT – Hope and Assistance to Local Tradies
Knowing what to look for and where to go for help in the Grampians and Wimmera is behind a new program being brought to the area this week.
Money raised from the Healthy Blokes Over 40’s Football Match held in Ararat last August is being utilised to promote Men’s Health, and mental health in particular. HALT (Hope and Assistance to Local Tradies) will be partnering with Grampians Community Health to provide this unique insight into dealing with mental health and local responses.
Greg Little CEO of Grampians Community Health said that a commitment was made by Grampians Community Health to use the funds from the extremely well supported Over 40’s Footy match to hold Mental Health awareness raising sessions and First Aid courses at places where men frequent.
“The HALT sessions are the first step in honouring this commitment and investing in the mental health of blokes in our community” said Mr Little.
HALT was developed by Jeremy Forbes from Castlemaine, a builder and an artist with the support of a concerned community. Jeremy went on to host the first ‘SAVE YOUR BACON’ Brekky in November 2013, for those in the building industry. It all started in a timber yard of a local hardware store, Rotarians behind the BBQ cooking a breakfast of bacon and eggs and a free goodie bag for all who attended.
Jermey will host next week’s sessions in the region, conveying a positive message and awareness to workers that are traditionally less likely to come forward when faced with their own mental health issues.
Jeremey Forbes explains that HALT aims to remind people they are valued by their community, and direct them to support services, both local and national, should they need them.
Kathleen Doole from Grampians Community Health said that although HALT’s original focus was on the trade sector we are excited to extend the sessions in the Grampians to local football clubs, Men’s sheds, and Local businesses.
Grampians Community Health are also holding an open session in Stawell on Wednesday 5th June at 12pm until 1pm for anyone who might be interested in hearing Jeremy’s inspirational talk. For more information about the Grampians Community Health Halt events or if you are interested in having a HALT session later on in the year please contact Grampians Community Health 03 5358 7400.
Anyone wishing to access any of the Grampians Community Health services can easily do so by calling 03 5358 7400.
Launch of Connecting2Community in the Grampians Wimmera Region
Connecting2Community is an initiative between Grampians Community Health and Ballarat Community Health is bringing a new peer designed and led model of mental health support to the Grampians/Wimmera region. Called Connecting2community, the program has been launched with the support of the Western Victorian Primary Health Network.
Launching the service in Horsham, the key drivers of the program were PHN CEO Dr Leanne Beagley, Sean Duffy CEO of Ballarat Community Health BCH and Greg Little CEO of Grampians Community Health as well as the peer workers who will deliver the service, Lucy Beaton, Shannan Flood, Rick Corney and Sara Cunningham-Smith who are all individuals with a lived experience and hold a formal qualification in Community Services.
It is great to see local services coming together, Grampians Community Health Chief Executive Greg Little said. “There was a gap identified in the service provision for people experiencing mental illness and a joint initiative between BCH and GCH has enabled us to deliver the exciting new program to the Wimmera and surrounds.”
The program is designed to help people tackle their mental illness through support, encouragement and advice as needed, to foster hope and determination for change. The program will see individuals paired with a peer worker to work together for six sessions to identify a goal and achieve an outcome.
“We will help individuals to identify and achieve goals big or small to work towards a rewarding positive future. That is why we are so excited about this program, this is an opportunity for people in our region to get the support they need when they are struggling. The peer support relates to the individuals and what they are experiencing”, said Grampians Community Health peer-worker Shannan Flood.
Mr Little said that “The program is being delivered across the Wimmera including Horsham, Stawell and Ararat with the other three workers based at Ballarat Community Health”.
“The great thing about this program is that people can self-refer to the service by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org, or by calling the number 1800 056 400, and they can also ask their GP to make a referral” said Mr Little.
Anyone wishing to access any of the Grampians Community Health services can easily do so by calling 5358 7400.
Young people in the Northern Grampians Shire will have a revamped FreeZa program for the next three years.
Grampians Community Health in partnership with Stawell Performing Arts Company Inc and the Stawell Neighbourhood House will work with young people aged 12-25 to deliver the FReeZA youth development program which provides opportunities to enjoy live band gigs, dance parties and other cultural, recreational and artistic events in drug, alcohol and smoke-free supervised and safe venues.
Grampians Community Health Chief Executive Greg Little said that the strength of the partnership would be in using the expertise of each organisation to develop the FreeZa program in the Northern Grampians Shire.
“Grampians Community Health has a strong focus on supporting young people, Stawell Performing Arts Company has expertise in artistic and music events and the Stawell Neighbourhood House provides training and activities in a welcoming space. The intention is to marry these together to grow the capacity of young people to deliver the activities” said Mr Little.
“The three organisations already have very strong youth involvement and connections which we will be able to draw from as well” added Mr Little.
A group of young people with an interest in leading the FreeZa program will be recruited and provided with training to identify and deliver FreeZa events.
Stawell Neighbourhood House Manager Lisa Arnfield said that the agency partnership will very much be about supporting the development of the young people involved in FreeZa.
“Our role is not going to be to tell young people what they want, in many ways it will be a mentoring role to help them problem solve and learn” said Mrs Arnfield.
Stawell Performing Arts Company Inc President Dianne Stewart said that she was looking forward to adding FreeZa events to the growing calendar of performances and activities already provided in the Northern Grampians.
“We already have a number of young people keen to be involved in the FreeZa program, either through the committee or by offering their experience as mentors. We hope that as more young people come on board that we can set up a really good foundation for the growth of the local FreeZa program” said Ms Stewart.
FreeZa is funded by the Victorian Government. The Central Grampians LLEN will also be delivering FreeZa programs in the Northern Grampians Shire.
Young People wanting to be part of leading the FreeZaNG can email GCH@GrampiansCommunityHealth.org.au
Did you end up in the career that you thought you would? For Eddie Nsanzimana the Youth Engagement worker at Grampians Community Health the advice of his teacher provided all the impetus he need to go down a path he’d never considered.
“I was just one of those kids at school, doing a VET course in year 11 and thinking I was going to be a tradie.” said Eddie.
The teacher must have seen something in Eddie as when they were at a Careers Expo she said, “Eddie, why don’t you go introduce yourself to the youth team at Grampians Community Health’s NEXUS program, and see if they might take you on board for work placement”.
“I went over and met the guys from Nexus and then started doing my work placement” said Eddie.
Nexus, the Grampians Community Health Youth Centre ran several events throughout the year in which Eddie participated. A camp for multicultural youth to create groups to help kids from their varied backgrounds to fit into the local community is what excited Eddie to get involved as a career.
Eddie got together with the young people and started planning the ‘Young G’ group and having meetings at Nexus.
With the support of the team at Nexus they organised an event for Harmony day and had about 60 or 70 kids show up, and it was a huge success. This event was the turning point for Eddie, “that’s what I want to do, my heart is set to do youth stuff” he said.
“Without the support of GCH staff, Jodie and Alois none of this would have been possible. They have support me a lot through the past two years, and they have shaped the person I have become, so I’m grateful that I met them in that cold winter day in June 2014 at the Career Expo, and now I wouldn’t change it for the word”, Eddie proudly said.
Mr Greg Little, Chief Executive Officer of Grampians Community Health, said, “it is a genuine win-win outcome, we are fortunate to have Eddie working with us, and he tells me that he feels lucky and fortunate that GCH was able to give him a chance as a trainee.”
Eddie also said that “it has been amazing, how young people can develop their skills through initiatives such as the Nexus café. From this experience, they now have enough confidence to find work in the hospitality industry”.
Eddies traineeship finished and he is rightly proud of the Diploma of Community Services he received through the Sunraysia Institute. He is now a fully-fledged Youth Engagement Worker with GCH and wants to continue to drive Young G and make it bigger.
Mr Little said often the young people from Horsham accessing Nexus programs don’t play sport and there is also a large mix of young people from multicultural backgrounds that don’t have the money for school camps, and sports. NEXUS programs are able to give this cohort opportunities to go up to the mountains for walks, go to camps, and participate in events where they can learn new skills.
“We are really pleased that Eddie has continued on his path as a youth engagement worker with Grampians Community Health, he has not only shown that anything is possible with his hard work, but is also able to model that to the young people he works with” said Mr Little.
Anyone wishing to access any of the Grampians Community Health services can easily do so by calling 5358 7400.
Youth Mentor Training schedule for 2018
Wimmera Southern Mallee LLEN (WSMLLEN) are pleased to be working with our partnering agencies to provide our community with free and quality training in Youth Mentoring to support the MATES Mentoring Program and Connecting the Service Puzzle crime prevention initiative.
Youth Mentors provide our Young People with positive role models who mentor, assist, target, engage and enhance the skills and life experiences of young people.
INFORMATION SESSIONS – 2018
Information sessions run for approximately 1 hour. Participants will be guided through the commitment, expectations, mentee profiles, training, benefits and policies.
Monday 22nd January @ 5:30pm
Wednesday 7th February @ 5:30pm
Wednesday 24th January @ 12:30pm
Wednesday 7th February @ 12:30pm
Booking link: https://wsmllenyouthmentoringinfosession.eventbrite.com
TRAINING – 2018 Evening Series
Attend 3 consecutive Monday evenings from 5:30pm – 7:30pm
Series 1 – 29th January / 5th February / 12th February
Booking link: https://wsmllenyouthmentoringevening1.eventbrite.com
Series 2 – 19th February / 26th February / 5th March
Booking link: https://wsmllenyouthmentoringevening2.eventbrite.com
TRAINING – 2018 Morning Series
Attend 3 consecutive weekday mornings from 9:30am – 11:30am
Series 1 – Wed 31st January / Thur 1st February / Fri 2nd February
Booking link: https://wsmllenyouthmentoringmorning1.eventbrite.com
Series 2 – Wed 14th February / Thur 15th February / Fri 16th February
Booking link: https://wsmllenyouthmentoringmorning2.eventbrite.com
Series 3 – Wed 28th February / Thur 1st March / Friday 2nd March
Booking link: https://wsmllenyouthmentoringmorning3.eventbrite.com
TRAINING – 2018 Full Day
Attend 1 full day event to complete all 3 key session topics. The full day session runs from 9:30am – 4:00pm
31st January 2018
14th February 2018
28th February 2018
Booking link: https://wsmllenyouthmentoringday.eventbrite.com
Further information or to arrange alternative training please contact:
Mary Bysouth MATES Mentoring Coordinator
Wimmera Southern Mallee LLEN
Mallee Building, Federation University
289 Baillie Street, HORSHAM
Tel: (03) 5381 0122
This training extensions within this program were developed in collaboration between Wimmera Southern Mallee LLEN, Centre for Participation, Alternative Pathways Horsham College, and Emma McCarthy Consulting. Thank you to all who participated and provided feedback during the training pilot and development.