Albury-Wodonga headspace is asking for feedback from the community that successfully campaigned to bring the youth mental health centre to this region.
The centre will hold a Community Report Card event on September 6 from 1pm to 5.30pm with the opportunity for people to provide input on how headspace can improve its support for young people.
Albury-Wodonga headspace manager Karina Kerr said the event was designed to “report back” to the community on the ways it had assisted young people since opening in January 2015.
“There has been such huge support from the community since our doors opened and we want to provide information back on what’s been done with that fundraising,” Ms Kerr said.
“The event is also a chance for the community to provide feedback on areas of need or where we could better support our youth.
“Together with our consortium partners, we are open to being accountable to those who helped make this all happen.”
Hanging on the walls is an enduring reminder of the community willpower that helped bring headspace to life on the Border.
Earlier this year, the paper butterflies that gave wings to the campaign were transformed into a memorial at the centre.
“We wanted to preserve the butterflies as a lasting keepsake in recognition of the community’s involvement in bringing headspace to life,” Ms Kerr told The Border Mail at the time.
The butterflies were used as a powerful symbol during the newspaper’s Ending the Suicide Silence campaign, which began in August 2012 and culminated in a successful petition to secure a headspace centre.
In 2015, The Border Mail stated in its editorial that the response from the community had been overwhelming.
And the reason?
“Everyone understood the importance of improving mental health services for young people in Albury-Wodonga ...
“We will always be proud of our campaign but we are proud too of the response from Albury-Wodonga ...”
That support has continued to flow with more than $44,000 donated from the community in the past year, according to Ms Kerr.
Money raised from events like The Big Splash has gone to direct service delivery such as increased counselling; an art therapy project and the highly successful Kids In Kontrol program; and also the purchase of extra “egg chairs” that young people use for self-soothing.
Ms Kerr said looking ahead the next challenge was to explore options to help overcome barriers to youth accessing support and services.