The Andrews Labor Government is giving more young people access to the mental healthcare they deserve, with builders appointed and construction about to start on major upgrades to three community-based youth centres.
Minister for Mental Health Gabrielle Williams today announced the appointment of Bowden Corporation to refurbish and modernise the existing Youth Prevention and Recovery Care (YPARC) centres in Dandenong and Frankston, while Alchemy Construct will oversee upgrades to the Bendigo YPARC centre.
The project includes upgrades to the main lounge and living areas, kitchen, and outdoor areas - which incorporate barbecue spaces and a sensory courtyard to promote communal living both indoors and out, encouraging rest and recovery as well as support for family visits.
Designs for the upgrades were released in 2022 and revealed the facilities’ exterior, internal fit-outs and outdoor areas, which have been carefully considered to ensure young people receive the treatment, care and support they need to recover in a safe, home-like environment.
Construction at all three sites will get underway in coming weeks and be completed in 2024. The centres will remain operational during construction, with works planned and managed to minimise impact to patients, staff and families.
Construction of the five new facilities and refurbishment of the three existing YPARC centres will support around 200 local construction jobs.
The upgrades are part of a $141 million Labor Government investment to more than double the capacity of the state’s current YPARC network with five new, 10-bed YPARC centres to be built in Ballarat, Greater Geelong, Greater Shepparton, Heidelberg and Traralgon – adding to the three existing centres.
As a key recommendation from the Royal Commission into Victoria’s Mental Health System, YPARC services provide around-the-clock clinical care for young people aged 16-25 experiencing mental health challenges – reducing pressure on hospital beds with early intervention care that offers an alternative to acute hospital admission.
Quote attributable to Minister for Mental Health and Member for Dandenong Gabrielle Williams
“The recovery environment is so critical to mental healthcare – we’re proud to be upgrading our YPARC facilities so young people feel safe, supported and at home while they are being cared for.”
Quote attributable to Member for Bendigo East Jacinta Allan
"The upgrade to Bendigo's YPARC will help enhance the delivery of mental health services to young people in our community"
Quote attributable to Member for Bendigo West Maree Edwards
“YPARC is such an important service for young people of Bendigo – we can’t wait to see the refurbished facility take shape.”
Quote attributable to Member for Frankston Paul Edbrooke
“This is an exciting upgrade for Frankston, we are looking forward to the refurbishment getting underway, and when completed we can provide more support for the young people in Frankston."
Reviewed 30 March 2023