Latest News

4bu hero news

New mental health campaign to support young Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples in Bundaberg

TakeAStepCampaign.jpeg

A new campaign is helping young Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples in Bundaberg reach out for mental health support.

Headspace's new 'Take a Step' program is being rolled out across the country as a way for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples to recognise when they should seek out mental health support.

According to the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples aged 24 and under, are three times more likely than other young people to die by suicide.

Headspace Bundaberg's Dean Hyland says a few years ago, only three to four per cent of the local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community would visit the centre, but that number is growing.

"We're over about 12 per cent now so we hope to increase that through this program to be able to provide that direct support to them," Mr Hyland says.

"Young people don't have to have a diagnosed mental illness to come into Headspace, it's really about coming in and just talking about some of the stresses they've got going."

The campaign is being run by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples through television and radio advertisements, with print and online resources also available.

Ngarrindjeri woman Nikia Bailey was part of the Headspace Wominjeka youth reference group, which helped to develop the 'Take a Step' program.

She says it will start important conversations and hopefully encourage more young people to seek help when they need it.

"I want people to understand how our Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures can empower us to take care of our social and emotional wellbeing.

"When I am having a hard time, my connections with other Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples help me understand that I am not alone. We have a shared experience and can support one another."

To learn more about the program visit headspace.org.au/takeastep.