Member for Kiama Gareth Ward MP has officially launched his petition calling on the Commonwealth Government to consider funding for a new Headspace service in Kiama.
Joining Mr Ward at the announcement was Mayor of Kiama Mark Honey and local artist Sam Hall.
Mr Ward recently wrote to the Commonwealth Minister for Health The Hon Greg Hunt MP in relation to this matter and said that copies of this Petition are now available to sign in the Kiama electorate office.
“Given the spike in youth suicides in the Kiama electorate, and given the location of Headspace offices in Wollongong and Nowra which currently receive funding from the Commonwealth Government, I have requested that the Federal Government consider funding for a new Headspace service in Kiama,” he said.
“This facility could provide vital support services to those who are vulnerable as well as to educate local young people 12-25 years on suicide prevention and the importance of youth mental health.
“This service could also cover issues such as relationships, vital counselling for those at risk, drug and alcohol support services, work and study support and putting young people in touch with local employment opportunities.
“There are support services currently available however it is my view that these services are poorly coordinated.
“If we want young people to access these services, they need to be able to trust the people running these services and this often takes time, effort and coordination.
“We have a responsibility to do everything we possibly can to provide the necessary access to services and support for vulnerable at-risk young people.
“So I am encouraging interested local residents to sign my Petition which I will also be tabling in NSW Parliament,” Mr Ward concluded.
Mr Ward’s online petition is now available to sign on his website at www.garethwardmp.com.au and copies are also available to sign in the Kiama electorate office at 102 Terralong Street, Kiama.
Please also see a link to Mr Ward’s recent speech in Parliament at: https://www.parliament.nsw.gov.au/Hansard/Pages/HansardResult.aspx#/docid/HANSARD-1323879322-116599/link/77.