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Emerging Minds: National Workforce Centre for Child Mental Health

Current project

The National Workforce Centre for Child Mental Health aims to build workforce capacity to better support children at risk of mental health conditions.

The National Workforce Centre is led by Emerging Minds and delivered in partnership with the Australian National University, the Parenting Research Centre, the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners and AIFS.

The project aims to build the capacity of organisations and professionals who work with children and families to identify, assess and support children (0–12 years) at risk of mental health difficulties.  

Despite the serious impacts of child mental health difficulties, children who experience or are at risk of experiencing mental health difficulties often go unrecognised, lack access to adequate assessment, and they and their families often don’t access appropriate support services.1

In response to this, the National Workforce Centre, funded by the federal Department of Health, was launched in late 2017. The aim of the project is to engage with practitioners and organisations in the health, social and community sectors to bring visibility to children’s social and emotional needs, so that parenting practices can be enhanced, infant and child mental health supported and the effects of trauma and harm reduced.

Emerging Minds image of young girl

Online training and resources

Promoting positive child mental health should be the responsibility of all health and welfare professionals, whether they work directly with children or not.

Through the National Workforce Centre, professionals and organisations have free access to: 

  • a national web hub providing innovative online training, implementation and practice support tools and information, webinars, events and the latest evidence and news about infant and child mental health. The web hub is being continually updated with new courses and content.
  • implementation support where organisations can link with the Centre’s team of Child Mental Health Consultants who can facilitate conversations to gauge readiness and help in the development of action plans to enhance organisational practice to support positive mental health outcomes for infants and children. This team works with organisations to connect, implement and enhance the resources produced by the NWC.

The National Workforce Centre’s free online training covers topics such as childhood trauma, supporting infant and toddler mental health and intervention programs for families where a parent has a mental illness. It ranges from short courses that take a few hours to complete to more in-depth training courses. View the training available on the Emerging Minds website. 

As part of AIFS’ work with the National Workforce Centre, our Child Family Community Australia (CFCA) information exchange is hosting a series of webinars and resources focused on child mental health for child, family and community sector professionals over the coming months. 

Visit the National Workforce Centre for Child Mental Health for more information and resources and subscribe to the Emerging Minds newsletter to receive regular updates.

The National Workforce Centre for Child Mental Health is funded by the Australian Government Department of Health under the National Support for Child and Youth Mental Health Program.

  1. Milburn, N. L., Lynch, M., & Jackson, J. (2008). Early identification of mental health needs for children in care: A therapeutic assessment programme for statutory clients of child protection. Clinical Child Psychology and Psychiatry13(1), 31–47.

Researchers

Research Fellow, Co-Manager, CFCA Information Exchange

Duration

2017 to 2021

Funding sources

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