The National Workforce Centre for Child Mental Health: Improving the lives of infants, children and families

Wednesday 25 July, 1400 – 1520

Abstract
Despite the serious impacts of child mental health difficulties, children and families often lack access to adequate assessment and support services. The National Workforce Centre for Child Mental Health (the National Workforce Centre) has been established to assist professionals and organisations who work with children and families to have the skills to identify, assess and support children at risk of mental health conditions. The National Workforce Centre is led by Emerging Minds in partnership with: Australian Institute of Family Studies; Australian Child and Adolescent Trauma, Loss and Grief Network (Australian National University); Parenting Research Centre; and, Royal Australian College of General Practitioners.

This symposium will begin with an overview of the context, aims and progress of the National Workforce Centre. Presenters will then focus on issues of particular consequence to children’s mental health in Australia, including an outline of the regionally-based implementation strategy of the National Workforce Centre, the importance of acknowledging the impact of trauma when working with children and families, and the complexities involved in identifying and diagnosing child mental health conditions. This symposium will be relevant not simply to those directly involved in child mental health services, but to all service providers, policy-makers and researchers whose work involves children and families. Encouraging children’s mental health should be the responsibility of all health and welfare professionals and organisations, whether they work directly with children or not.