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Shining a light on youth

15 May 2013

Chair Prof Allan Fels this week delivered the fourth Winston Rickards Memorial Oration at The Royal Children's Hospital in Melbourne.

The annual oration raises awareness of current and critical concerns in child and adolescent mental health. Prof Fels spoke of the importance of early investment, accessibility to services and the cost to the economy. You can read his full address here.

He also announced the release of our latest ‘spotlight’ report.  Last year we commissioned non-government organisation Batyr, with the support of the Young and Well-Cooperative Research Centre, to look at how we can better engage and involve young Australians in our work.

"Young people need to be provided with an opportunity to have a voice. Engaging young people is fundamental to building a new system of mental health in Australia. I'm delighted we were able to partner with Sebastian Robertson and his team at Batyr on this important work," said Associate Professor Jane Burns, CEO of the Young and Well Cooperative Research Centre.

The report; How did we score? Engaging young people in the development of a National Report Card on Mental Health and Suicide Prevention gives us a picture of what respondents are looking for in the Commission. It is an early step and sets the scene for future engagement.

"Even the most disadvantaged Australians should be able to lead a 'contributing life,' whatever that means for them and this simple goal will be our touchstone and yardstick."

Chair Prof Allan Fels AO
National Mental Health Commission

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