Holistic headspace Bankstown


Headspace is the National Youth Mental Health Initiative. Its target group is between the ages of 12-25 and its mission is to provide a holistic service in the areas of primary health, mental health, alcohol and other drugs, plus vocational and other psychosocial support. A new headspace office has opened at 41-45 Rickard Road Bankstown, near Bankstown Central. RichmondPRA is the lead agency of the headspace Bankstown consortium which also consists of a number of local, state and national organisations.

Panorama’s intrepid reporter Warren Heggarty went to Bankstown to meet with the new Clinical and Operations Manager, Tom Traae, as well as headspace’s acting head of centres Claire Honey and New South Wales/ACT state coordinator Andrew Smith. RichmondPRA’s General Manager, Operations Andrew O’Brien, has been coordinating this project from inception, and is doubtlessly glad that the process has gone smoothly.

As Panorama has previously reported, partnerships and consortiums are becoming a more and more important means of making our services “holistic,” as it just makes sense to put people in contact with everything they need from a single starting point…a “one stop shop,” if you like. This method of holistic care will mean that what support we provide from headspace Bankstown will be different compared to other RichmondPRA services. Also, any young people who access headspace will have access to clinical staff available on site, which is something you won’t come across at RichmondPRA otherwise.

Manager Tom Traae told us that there are a lot of complex factors that had to be addressed in order to be sure that  things will work smoothly in Bankstown, which is one of the most ethnically diverse areas in Australia. The vision of the headspace team was for young people to be able to walk in and access a “seamless service” without having to worry about the complexity behind the scenes. This is the “no wrong door” approach.

No organisation ever operates in total isolation from others, but establishing consortiums like this one is also a formal way of working more closely together, pooling resources and talent and providing a better experience for the people who access the services. After all, like our motto goes, “Together, we’re better!”

Another Bankstown service is Partners in Recovery, which is just a short walk down the street from headspace, and then there’s also YPOP (the Young People’s Outreach Program).Sounds like Bankstown is in good hands.

Contact details for headspace Bankstown

41-45 Rickard Road, Bankstown, NSW 2200

phone: (02) 9393 9669

Opening hours are Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm

CEO Pam Rutledge, clinician Fatima Eid and centre manager Tom Traae at the new Headspace Centre in Bankstown. Picture courtesy of Timothy Clapin from the Canterbury-Bankstown Express

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