Frontline youth service ReachOut has welcomed the Turnbull Government’s $1.8 million commitment to boost youth mental health support and in the wake of an increase in demand due to the same sex marriage postal survey.
ReachOut Australia experienced a 40 per cent spike in young people seeking help from its dedicated LGBTIQ support services during the postal survey, forcing resources to be diverted from other critical areas to cope.
ReachOut CEO Jono Nicholas thanked Health Minister Greg Hunt for the additional support and for listening to ReachOut’s requests for help and acknowledging the increase in demand for mental health services during and following the postal survey.
Mr Nicholas also thanked the many MPs and Senators from across the Coalition, Labor, Greens and crossbench who worked tirelessly publicly and privately to highlight the issue and help make the #mindthefacts marriage equality mental health campaign a success.
“We are on the frontline everyday and there’s no doubt there’s more work ahead to ensure young people who feel harmed by the postal survey get the help and support they need,” Mr Nicholas said.
“We help over 1.5 million young Australians and their parents every year with everything from depression to bullying, exam stress, relationships and more, and the postal survey has certainly added an unplanned expense that has stretched our already limited resources even tighter.
“This funding is therefore welcome and will help alleviate some of the increases in mental health service demand created by the same sex marriage postal survey, as well reunite Australia.”
Mr Nicholas said ReachOut’s services were primarily aimed at early intervention and were often the first stop on the frontline for young people, particularly if they were reluctant to seek help face-to-face.
He reminded young Australians and their parents that ReachOut.com’s support was available anywhere, anytime and anonymously if they knew someone who was struggling post the marriage debate or with other stresses in their lives.
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