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Mental health recovery funding

The NSW Government is putting $130million towards helping people whose mental health is affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The funding will:

  • provide more appointments for psychology, psychiatry and allied health services
  • address the sharp rise in eating disorders and self-harm presentations
  • free up more mental health beds
  • launch the biggest suicide prevention training program ever undertaken.

Where the funding will go

Mental health workforce

Over two years, $35million in funding will expand the mental health clinical workforce. This funding will allow NSW residents to access privately practising psychologists, psychiatrists and other mental health professionals. NSW Health will work in partnership with Primary Health Networks.


There will be $20million in funding to expand youth mental health services provided by Headspace, including 55,000 additional appointments and a boost to GP and clinical psychiatrist appointments at their NSW centres.

The funding will also allow placements at Headspace centres for:

  • masters and doctorate psychology students (clinical and general registration)
  • social work and occupational therapy students (pre-registration and masters).

It will allow students, supervised by clinical educators, to conduct mental health assessments and provide clinical sessions for young people. Up to 350 students can participate over the 18-month period from January 2022 to June 2023.

Suicide prevention training

Over two years, $14million will provide training to 275,000 people in suicide prevention. Training is being aimed at high school peer leaders, teachers and support staff, parents, community groups and youth influencers such as sports coaches and club managers.

Living Works will deliver the majority of the training, while grants will also be available to small organisations delivering training to at-risk groups

Aboriginal communities

Over four years, $21million funding will employ 18 FTE Aboriginal Care Navigators and 18 FTE Aboriginal Peer Workers to link Aboriginal Australians to culturally-appropriate mental health and suicide prevention services.

Eating disorders

Over four years, $16.5million in funding will address the increase of people diagnosed with eating disorders. The frontline workforce will be expanded to better recognise and respond to people who show signs of eating disorders. The Butterfly Foundation is also being funded to admit NSW residents to its national eating disorders centre in Wandi Nerida in Queensland.

Over one year, $3million will be used to provide access to private beds for 12-24-year-olds experiencing complex trauma and eating disorders. This will be trialled in South Western Sydney Local Health District.


Over two years, $6million will fund the increase of caseworkers and casework managers to provide support to child protection practitioners at high risk of trauma.

Community groups

  • Over two years, $5million will fund a grants program for local community wellbeing events.
  • Over four years, $3.2million will fund the creation of a Transcultural Mental Health Line – a NSW first.
  • Over one year, $2.8million will fund NSW sporting bodies to deliver mental health and wellbeing initiatives.
Mental Health Sports Fund

The NSW Government will provide $2.8million to fund NSW sporting bodies to deliver mental health and wellbeing initiatives. Sporting bodies will use the grants to deliver projects that aim to increase mental health, wellbeing or resilience amongst their members and communities.

Mental Health Sports Fund grant recipients
AusCyclingPartnership with Coomaditchie United Aboriginal Corporation to deliver a cultural awareness program and learn to ride program.Illawarra region and all NSW
Bentstix Hockey ClubLGBTQI+ Mental and Physical Health Outreach Support Program. Sydney
Canterbury Bankstown Bulldogs Rugby League Club LimitedDelivery of Changing Rooms, a mental fitness program designed for children and young people aged 14 to 20 years.Canterbury Bankstown, Liverpool, Port Macquarie
Central Coast GAA Club (CCGC)LGBTQI+ and Mental Health workshops and trainingCentral Coast NSW, Randwick, Sydney, all NSW
Country Rugby UnionPartnership with Batyr to continue the Get Talkin Tour and deliver mental health programs.Far North Coast, Mid North Coast, Central West Regions
Deniliquin Golf ClubMental health campaign and development of local mental health resources, wellbeing events and Mental Health First Aid courses.Deniliquin
East Coast Tribal League Aboriginal mental health initiatives including an Aboriginal rugby league competition, camp, and statewide knockout carnival.Coffs Harbour, Bellingen, Nambucca Valley, Kempsey, Port Macquarie
Emerald City Kickball IncorporatedLGBTQI+ controlled kickball sports program for LGBTQI+ people.Eastern Suburbs and Sydney
Gladesville Gymnastics Club Incorporated Mental health, resilience and nutrition workshops and development of educational materials and resources.Gladesville
Hamilton Azzurri Junior Soccer ClubSupport for newly arrived refugee and migrant youth, to integrate into Australian society and to improve their wellbeing.Hunter, Central Coast, Northern NSW
Macquarie Shores Swim ClubEmbedding of community mental health promotion and prevention targeting post-natal mothers.Toronto
Maitland Basketball AssociationA series of workshops for female members, focusing on mental health and social and emotional wellbeing.Maitland
Manly Warringah Netball AssociationWellbeing training program to raise awareness of mental health/wellbeing and inclusivity in sport.Manly
Merimbula Basketball AssociationEngaging vulnerable people in basketball and creating links to supports.Eden
Moree Junior Rugby Club Weekend wellbeing camp and program delivery throughout the season for teenage players, delivered with the Salvation Army.Moree
Narrandera Rugby League Football ClubImplementation of Our Mob Matter mental health wellbeing program.Narrandera
Newcastle Netball AssociationDevelopment and implementation of a mental health strategy across the association.Newcastle
North Bondi Surf Life Saving ClubDelivery of a series of accredited Standard and/or Youth Mental Health First Aid programs and bespoke training sessions.North Bondi
North Tamworth Bears Rugby League Football ClubPartnership with the Hayden Butler Foundation to run a range of workshops around suicide prevention and healthy choices.Tamworth
Northern Hawks Rugby League Football ClubDelivery of Mental Health First Aid and community event for Aboriginal club members and community.Port Stephens
Northern NSW FootballDeliver SafeTalk gatekeeper training, mental health aware shed talks, and a designated mental health round.Northern NSW
NSW Rugby LeagueScale-up of Changing Rooms – a mental fitness program across NSW.Shoalhaven, Kiama/Shellharbour, Kempsey-Nambucca, New England, Moree/Narrabri, Griffith, South-West Sydney
NSW Rugby UnionChampions and Coaches training and events that enhance the social and emotional development of youth.Western and South Western Sydney
NSW Squash Ltd Delivery of workshops that have evolved out of the COVID-19 pandemic with an explicit focus on building resilience.Sydney, all NSW
Orange United Sports ClubAboriginal NRL and netball wellbeing themed rounds, community colour run and mental health workshops.Orange
Outdoors NSW and ACTA 12-week mental health program that combines the physical activity of bike riding with a structured education program.Cumberland and Parramatta
PCYC NSWThe roll-out and delivery of the GRIT program in 16 PCYC’s sporting clubs across NSW.All NSW
Riding for the Disabled Association NSWPartnership with Interrelate to implement the Pull Up Your Socks program across all Riding for the Disabled groups.All NSW
Speers Point Physical Culture Club Inc.A series of workshops for female members, focusing on mental health and social and emotional wellbeing.Glendale
St Johns Junior Rugby LeagueLearning activities for adults as peers and role models for junior players, and coaches as mentors for players.Dubbo
Surf Life Saving New South WalesFacilitate the selection, training and supervision of volunteers who will champion wellbeing initiatives.All NSW
Swimming NSW LtdPartnership with the Body Confidence Collective to deliver mental health and wellbeing supports.All NSW
Sydney Swans LimitedAcademy engagement days, mental health app access, education workshop and 5 day cultural camp for Aboriginal youth.Sydney, North Coast NSW, Central Coast NSW
Tennis NSWEducation and training to increase community inclusion, mental health and wellbeing for LGBTQI+ people in sport.Sydney
Water Polo NSWMental Health First Aid training, mental health round and resource development and action plan.All NSW
Westside Tennis Club IncA tennis program for Aboriginal people to destigmatise mental health issues, build resilience and increase support seeking.Coffs Harbour

Perinatal mental health

Over two years, $2.6 million will help to expand Gidget Foundation’s services and access to the online Gidget Perinatal Support Centre. This will allow the foundation to expand Gidget House the Start Talking telehealth programs.

Mental health infrastructure program funding

The NSW Government has announced $700 million for a state-wide mental health infrastructure program. This investment will transform existing infrastructure to support new contemporary care models and provide specialist mental health units for children and adolescents, families and older people. It will also improve the forensic mental health network and provide facilities which help patients reintegrate into normal life.

Locations confirmed include:

  • two dedicated mother baby units located at Royal Prince Alfred hospital and Westmead hospital
  • 26 new forensic low secure beds in Western Sydney
  • a new specialist child and adolescent mental health unit with up to 10 beds at Nepean Hospital.

Planning continues on this program. Find out more about the Statewide Mental Health Infrastructure Program's sub-programs and projects.

Towards Zero Suicides initiatives

Towards Zero Suicides is an $143.4 million investment over four years in suicide prevention initiatives that address priorities in the Strategic Framework for Suicide Prevention in NSW 2022-2027.

Suicide Prevention Fund

The NSW Suicide Prevention Fund is funded by the NSW Government to provide opportunities for non-government organisations and community based services to deliver local suicide prevention services and activities.

From 2020-21, the NSW Government has committed $7.4 million over four years for the NSW Suicide Prevention Fund.

Read more information about suicide prevention services.

Funded projects

  • ACON Health is being funded $340,000 for the Towards Zero Suicides Community Response Package for people of diverse sexualities and/or genders.
  • Anglican Community Services is being funded $340,000 for the Towards Zero Suicides Community Response Package for older people.
  • Cox Inall Ridgeway is being funded $340,000 for the Towards Zero Suicides Community Response Package for Aboriginal people.
  • Suicide Prevention Australia is being funded $340,000 for the Towards Zero Suicides Community Response Package for men.
  • Wellways Australia is being funded $340,000 for the Towards Zero Suicides Community Response Package for young people.
  • ACON Health is being funded $1,055,000 for community-based suicide prevention aftercare services for people of diverse sexualities and/or genders in Sydney and Newcastle, including provision of a statewide virtual aftercare service.
  • Grand Pacific Health is being funded $1,055,000 for community-based suicide prevention aftercare services for people in Southern NSW.
  • Grand Pacific Health is being funded $1,805,000 for community-based suicide prevention aftercare services for people in the Illawarra Shoalhaven.
  • HealthWise is being funded $1,805,000 for community-based suicide prevention aftercare services for people in New England North West NSW.

Current as at: Wednesday 26 April 2023
Contact page owner: Mental Health