Mental health promotion and early intervention in rural and remote Australia through the KidsMatter Initiative5th Australian Rural and Remote Mental Health Symposium (2013)
This presentation showcases the suite of KidsMatter mental health promotion initiatives as an exemplar of government investment in rural and remote communities. KidsMatter is a continuous improvement framework that supports early childhood education and care services (ECEC) and primary schools to promote children's mental health and wellbeing. The aim of KidsMatter is to enable educational settings to implement evidence-based mental health promotion, prevention and early intervention strategies that also facilitate partnerships with mental health service providers. KidsMatter is currently being implemented in over 1600 ECEC services and schools nation-wide, with 45% being located in rural or remote settings.
Consideration is given to the comprehensive pilot evaluations (2007-2012), with a focus on positive outcomes for ECEC services and schools located in rural and remote setting, in addition to services with a high proportion of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children. Findings showed that by the end of the pilots there were practically significant improvements in children’s mental health and wellbeing. KidsMatter was found to be suitable for ECEC services in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities. KidsMatter was also found to be better implemented in rural and remote locations, which may reflect stronger community cohesion in rural and remote locations compared to metropolitan. How KidsMatter is continuing to invest in remote communities, such as the Kimberley WA, Yuendemu NT and Cape York Peninsula QLD, to improve outcomes for children’s mental health and wellbeing, is advanced in order to encourage health and community linkage.
- Mental health,
- Early childhood,
- Primary schools,
Publication DateOctober, 2013
Citation InformationKatherine L Dix and Stephen McDonald. "Mental health promotion and early intervention in rural and remote Australia through the KidsMatter Initiative" 5th Australian Rural and Remote Mental Health Symposium (2013)
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/katherine_dix/39/