14 July 2021

People in mandatory isolation will have access to around the clock wellbeing and mental health support and there will be increased access to services for parents, young people and multicultural communities who are struggling during the lockdown.

As part of a joint Commonwealth and NSW Government package worth $17.35 million, NSW will provide $5.1m for a range of mental health services across NSW.

Treasurer Dominic Perrottet said our top priority is keeping people safe during the pandemic, and not just from the current COVID-19 outbreak.

"We know this will be a very difficult period for many, the additional funding will provide more mental health support particularly for young people and families."

Minister for Mental Health Bronnie Taylor said the COVID-19 investment will enable providers to immediately increase their support during this period.

"Looking after your mental wellbeing is vital during this time and with thousands of people and families in isolation, access to services 24 hours 7 days a week is hugely important," Mrs Taylor said

"We know this can be a stressful time for families, parents and children, and these new and existing services available now 24 hours 7 days a week, means there is an avenue for people to reach out for advice or help."

The joint package includes:

  • $7 million for headspace outreach support to parents and young people across greater Sydney - jointly funded by NSW and the Commonwealth Government;
  • $3 million for Sonder to provide anyone subject to a mandatory 14-day isolation order with 24/7 health and wellbeing support, with an emphasis on early intervention, for the entire duration of their isolation period - jointly funded by NSW and the Commonwealth Government;
  • $3 million to support Culturally and Linguistically Diverse (CALD) communities, with a focus on communities in South West and Western Sydney. The funding will go to Beyond Blue and the Primary Health Networks (PHNs) to ensure multicultural communities have access to services and appropriate language translation services;
  • $2 million for Primary Health networks across Sydney to increase their mental health services across all areas;
  • $1.5 million for Lifeline to boost crisis counselling services;
  • $150,000 for Gidget Foundation to provide counselling services for parents suffering from perinatal depression and anxiety.
  • Free access for 8,000 new parents to the Tresillian SleepWell baby app, through a funding injection of $100,000.

Kids Helpline will also be able to extend online wellbeing sessions to secondary schools with a funding boost of $300,000 and the Butterfly Foundation will also receive $300,000 to provide additional support for young people with or at risk of an eating disorder and their carers.

"In the past year we have seen a rise in self harm, we want to make sure the feeling of isolation doesn't add to this, so this funding ensures the services can cope with increased demand for mental health support."