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New premises mark new phase for mental health ally

Tuesday, 28 July 2015
  • Lotterywest grant of $4m toward new headquarters for mental health agency
  • Upgraded premises to improve services and support a new recovery-focused initiative

Premier Colin Barnett today opened Richmond Wellbeing's new premises - made possible through a $4 million Lotterywest grant.

The not-for-profit mental health organisation is this year marking 40 years of service. Its upgraded mental health precinct in Manning Road will include a new head office and facilities for training and outreach services.

The purchase and construction of the facility was made possible by the $4 million Lotterywest grant along with $3.4 million from Richmond Wellbeing.

Mr Barnett acknowledged the important work of the organisation in transforming people's lives.

"Richmond Wellbeing's programs integrate the key elements of recovery with accommodation and support services, which focus on allowing people to regain control of their lives," he said.

"Staff members are committed to giving clients the confidence and skills they need to meet daily challenges and recover from mental illness."

The Premier said the Lotterywest grant built on a long history of State Government support for the organisation, including through the Mental Health Commission, which this year will provide more than $10.3 million to fund supported accommodation services for people with mental illness across the metropolitan, Peel, Bunbury and Busselton areas.

Mental Health Minister Helen Morton said the new location represented a significant advance in the development of the organisation and would support the agency as it strived to increase the emphasis on mental health recovery across its range of services.

"Richmond Wellbeing enters a new chapter early next year when, assisted by ongoing funding from the Mental Health Commission, it embarks upon an innovative Recovery House two-year pilot program," Mrs Morton said.

This program, to operate at the agency's Queens Park site from early 2016, would provide three, 13-week, live-in, recovery-oriented programs each year to support people with severe mental illness to develop skills to take charge of their recovery journey.

"With its focus on recovery-based practice and supporting people to live independently in the community, this program aligns closely with the mental health reform directions identified in the Western Australian Mental Health, Alcohol and Other Drugs Services Plan 2015-2025 that is now being finalised," she said.

The pilot, based on similar successful programs in the UK and Italy, will also include family recovery training programs for up to 60 carers, as well as workforce development in recovery training.

Mrs Morton noted that 40 years ago when Richmond Wellbeing started under the name of Richmond Fellowship of WA, most services offered for people with mental illness were clinically based, and the organisation was one of only a few that offered support services in the community.

"It has since branched out to become a major promoter of mental health recovery in WA," she said.

"This is an organisation that embodies the Government's vision where everyone works together to encourage and support people with mental illness to stay in the community, out of hospital and live a meaningful life."

Fact File

  • Richmond Wellbeing has 543 active clients
  • Richmond Wellbeing is part of the international Richmond Fellowship Network made up of organisations dedicated to the 'recovery-based' approach
  • For more information about Richmond Wellbeing, visit http://www.rfwa.org.au
  • Lotterywest supported a Richmond Fellowship 40-year community history book
  • WA is the only State where money raised from lottery products is distributed directly back to the community to support not-for-profit organisations
  • Last financial year, Lotterywest raised $283 million to support the WA community
  • For more about Lotterywest grants, visit http://www.lotterywest.wa.gov.au/grants

Premier's office - 6552 5000

Mental Health Minister's office - 6552 6900

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