Bill Brakoulias’ project awarded $650,000 to help young mum’s mental health in western Sydney

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A new research project focused on the mental health of young mothers in western Sydney has been awarded $650,000 by the Federal Government.

Led by Professor Bill Brakoulias, Dr Ashwini Padhi, Sumithira Joseph and Rowena Saheb, the project is aimed at improving young mothers’ mental health literacy, and is part of a partnership initiative between Western Sydney Local Health District’s (WSLHD) Perinatal Child Youth Mental Health Service and Western Sydney University.

The project will lead to the creation of a new and innovative national digital resource for mothers aged 24 and under, which will help them better understand their own mental health, normalise seeking help and help put them and their children on track for a healthy life.

Professor Bill Brakoulias, who is the Mental Health Executive Director of WSLHD, says this means young mums will recognise the warning signs and know how to get help.

Professor Bill Brakoulias is one of four researchers leading the mental health project.

“Young mothers at higher risk of mental health issues will be able to increase their understanding of wellbeing and the services available to support their mental health at a vulnerable time. This will improve outcomes for them and their families,” Professor Brakoulias said in a media release.

“The opportunity for our Perinatal Child Youth Mental Health Service clinicians to use their expertise to build capacity nationally will further enhance our status as a leading provider of high quality and specialised mental health services for mothers across the state.”

Once complete, the innovative resource will be freely available for young parents to access in their own time across Australia.

It is a priority of the project team to actively engage mothers from diverse and at-risk populations including migrant, refugee and Indigenous mothers, to ensure the resource is culturally appropriate and accessible.

The project is part of a $16.6 million investment into perinatal mental health services announced by the Australian Government this month.

Source: The Pulse.

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