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Boost for local mental health services

By Morgan Dyer

Mental health services in the Greater Shepparton region are expected to expand as the state government announced $130 000 in local funding.

Shepparton based National Disability Insurance Scheme provider Australian Primary Mental Health Care Alliance welcomed the funds from Disability, Ageing and Carers Minister Luke Donnellan last week.

APMHA Healthcare chief executive officer Renee Hayden said the funding would be used to expand their mental health services in Shepparton.

"This funding will allow us to expand services at our newly established Shepparton mental health recovery rub, Alaya House,” Ms Hayden said.

“This funding will mean we can provide the local workforce and NDIS participants with a new group therapy room and training room, mental health and psychosocial disability training for local NDIS providers and increased service options with APMHA as a new NDIS provider in the Goulburn Valley,” she said.

ConnectGV also received a $130 000 grant and are both part of the government’s $1.3 million Victorian Regional Readiness Fund for Shepparton-based NDIS providers.

The $26 million fund was established to help generate local solutions to workforce issues, deliver services to regional and rural communities and better support the choices of people with disability on the NDIS.

Mr Donnellan visited ConnectGVs supported employment program last week at Shepparton’s Billabong Gardens and said there were serious shortages relating to mental health services.

“A lot of the community health funding for mental health has gone into the NDIS and we really aren’t seeing enough of that coming back into the community sector at that sort of mid-level support for people, not the crisis level, but that mid-level support,” Mr Donnellan said.

“That’s why that funding was provided also to the Primary Mental Health Care Network.

“There are issues still in relation to how the NDIS deals with mental health." 

ConnectGV will use their funds to strengthen their workforce capability and capacity as the NDIS rolls out in the Shepparton region.

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