The Prime Minister’s Youth Mental Health Project – Phase 2 Assessment

Superu has had a busy couple of months – they’ve released assessments, tools and reports.

Their summary report on the Youth Mental Health Project focuses on what aspects of the Prime Minister’s Youth Mental Health Project have worked and what more can be done, drawing from their earlier reports and a cost benefit analysis. We’ve embedded the report below.

They find the programme has been effective – even quantifying the value at $1 to $1.60 out for every $1 in.

The Project focused on five areas – better access, early identification of mild to moderate issues, more supportive schools, better access to information and improved knowledge of what works.

In identifying what could work better – they divided their answer into two – youth getting help and providers giving help and four themes…

  • Theme #1 – Asking for help – youth being willing and feeling supported to reach out
  • Theme #2 – Accessing help – youth and their support networks knowing how and where
  • Theme #3 – Delivering help in primary care – service providers knowing how, and being able, to support youth
  • Theme #4 – Referring onwards for help – specialist and other secondary services being available and known to referring schools and GPS

Despite this being the the Prime Minister’s project the report isn’t uncritical – although universally positive in focus and tone. The report is clear and assuredly free of jargon.

Suggested improvements include:

  • More connectedness and integration of local service delivery
  • Broadening the focus to all youth (12-19)
  • Encouraging youth friendly services and co-location
  • Identifying and targeting specific youth populations – there’s more about this in the companion report Youth Mental Health Project – At a Glance: Spotlight on youth less well-served
  • Promoting existing resources and services to youth, families, whānau and communities
  • Addressing stigma

A concerning note was the recognition of overstretched resources (and staff?) meaning services aren’t always available when needed – compounding the problems are access issues including transport, school holiday closures and cost.

Working together more is a common theme in the suggested solutions.

Hopefully with a clear assessment of how things are the Prime Minister’s focus will be on how their project can build on successes to reach more youth and do more good.

Connect South maintains – a database of youth health and wellbeing services in Dunedin aimed at youth and their whānau – you can check it out to get an idea of the breadth of services available – and if you spot anything missing be sure and let us know.


Artsenta is running an afterhours trial

From February Artsenta will trial after hours studio sessions for 8 weeks. This is for people who want to be creative but can’t attend during normal opening hours. If you know someone that could benefit from this initiative please pass this information on.

Artsenta is a community art workshop for people who have experience of mental illness, they celebrated their 30th year in 2016.

Sessions are 5-7pm on Wednesdays from 8 February until 29 March.

No referral is needed but people need to have had some contact with a mental health provider, PHO or GP.

Artists will be asked for a koha and will be expected to be able to work independently.

The sessions are in addition to Artsenta’s funded service.

Artsenta director, Paul Smith, said the initiative is being undertaken due to requests made by members of the community, “There are a number of people who have come to Artsenta and really benefited from it, but work commitments now prevent them from attending. We want to support them and also open the door to other people who work or are busy during the day.”

“We know that being part of a creative community can support people’s mental wellbeing and so its great to be able to undertake this trial and see what level of demand there is. But places are limited so we encourage people to register their interest.”

More information is available at – or by phoning 03 477-9566.Displaying image001.jpg

Like Minds, Like Mine Community Partnership Fund

Sun shining through flax fronds

The Health Promotion Agency is calling for submissions to their new community partnership fund:

“Like Minds, Like Mine is a national programme to promote the reduction of stigma and discrimination and to increase social inclusion for people with experience of mental illness. The programme is guided by the Like Minds, Like Mine National Plan 2014-2019

More info on their website here.

Interactive discussion forum: Building Flourishing Communities

Otago Mental Health Support Trust and the Mental Health Foundation are inviting  organisations to a free interactive discussion forum: Building Flourishing Communities Using the Five Ways To Wellbeing to improve health outcomes for all on 28 February at Community Link.

The Five Ways to Wellbeing is a set of evidence-based actions that individuals can take to improve their mental health and wellbeing. They have also been used to develop policies and strategies to promote optimum wellbeing or ‘flourishing’ at a population level.

This forum aims to bring together organisations that are actively using the Five Ways with those who may have a strong interest in doing so or in finding out more. Speakers will include representatives from Dunedin City Council, Mental Health Foundation, He Oranga Pounamu and Otago Mental Health Support Trust.

All organisations with an interest in community development, neighbourhood renewal or population health and wellbeing are encouraged to join us for a lively and active session.

More details are in our Calendar

To register a place or for more information, contact Grant Cooper, Manager Otago Mental Health Support Trust . 03 477 2598