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Thirty ‘Champions’ to be selected to help grow the mental health peer workforce

06 November 2014

The National Mental Health Commission is pleased to be supporting a new initiative that will help grow the mental health peer workforce in Australia.

The Champions of Mental Health Peer Work Initiative provides the opportunity for 30 experienced peer workers and trainers to undertake a recognition programme to become trainers and assessors of the Certificate IV in Mental Health Peer Work.

This national capacity building initiative is funded by the National Mental Health Commission(the Commission) and coordinated by the Mental Health Coordinating Council (MHCC) on behalf of Community Mental Health Australia (CMHA). It has also been shaped and supported by a national network of peer work expertise. 

As a requirement of the National Training Package for the Certificate IV in Mental Health Peer Work, trainers must have a lived experience of mental illness from the perspective of either a consumer or carer, and hold the Certificate IV in Training and Assessment and the new Certificate IV in Mental Health Peer Work. 

There are currently few trainers and assessors across Australia who meet all three requirements. This initiative offers experienced consumer and carer peer workers, who are also experienced and skilled trainers and facilitators, the chance to apply for a free, tailored package that will qualify them to train and assess the Certificate IV in Mental Health Peer Work.

National Mental Health Commissioner Jackie Crowe says: “The mental health peer workforce is one of the fastest growing workforces in Australia, and supporting its growth and recognition as an emerging profession is crucial in helping people live contributing lives, and in building a stronger and more resilient mental health system.”

The National Selection Panel is seeking applications from highly experienced and skilled people who are currently working in paid or unpaid mental health peer work roles, have some training and facilitation experience and are passionate about training and growing the peer workforce. Criteria for selection is designed to attract participants who will be confident and equipped to deliver training to peer workers without delay.

“This initiative represents a ground breaking advancement for the Australian Peer Workforce. It will support the emergence of a national workforce of trainers and assessors in peer work, who will be pivotal in taking the Cert IV training out to consumer and carer peer workers so that their work and experience can be formally recognised,” says Jenna Bateman, CEO of the Mental Health Coordinating Council.

Applications close 9am Monday 8 December 2014. Applicants are advised that the application is extensive and would benefit from early planning.

To apply, or for further information visit www.mhcc.org.au or contact MHCC Learning and Development on (02) 9555 8388 ext 106.

"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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