b'Better mental healthfor youth. Headspace is leading a new virtual reality program to improve the mental health of young people.The Uniting-run Headspace in HorshamFacility manager, Liz Rowe said the program, supports young people aged 12-25 to reducewhich was designed before the start of the the impact of mental illness and offer anpandemic, has proved a handy tool over the pastinclusive space for local youth.2 years. The program is designed to help improve mentalIn 2019 we rolled out telehealth services because health outcomes for young people. social isolation is not something new when you It involves people wearing a headset with goggleslive in a rural town, says Liz. so they can enter a virtual environment. We had wait lists for local youth seeking help for Theres an increasing number of young peopletheir mental health, so we looked at how we could needing mental health support and this programdeliver services to those in need.allows for an earlier intervention on issues such asWeve had some great results with young people depression and anxiety, says Headspace Horshamwhove used the tool so far. Most have found it Clinical Lead, Sandi McLaughlin. very valuable. Virtual reality has proved a powerful tool and thisWe will never take away face-to-face services. technology allows young people to recreate real- This is just another tool in the belt that we can life experiences in controlled environments whereoffer young people. they feel safe, such as at Headspace or at home. The Headspace team tackle various issues, It equips young people with the tools they needincluding:to deal with challenging situations, confront theirMental health fears and learn coping strategies to feel betterSexual healthabout themselves and the world around them. Alcohol and drug challengesSessions include: Education, employment and more. Working on breathing techniquesAn LGBTIQ+ support program is also available.Scuba Diving and swimming with the dolphinsListening to the sounds of water falling, wind blowing or people chatting Find out more about ourLearning about stress, its causes and techniquesmental health services to better manage itProgressive muscle relaxation.Supporter Newsletter Autumn 2022 9'