NT Primary Health Network has partnered with the NT Mental Health Coalition in a bid to encourage more students to undertake placements in local mental health and wellbeing organisations.
The Student Placement Program aims to increase student placements within the mental health sector, while encouraging more NT organisations to embed students within their workforce.
NT PHN CEO, Gill Yearsley, said the new program will help grow the local mental health sector to help meet increasing demand.
“Encouraging more student placements in the community mental health sector exposes more professionals to upskilling around mental health, which will ultimately provide better services to those Territorians suffering from mental health challenges,” she said.
“More opportunities for student placements will also lead to increased employment opportunities and help alleviate long-term vacancies and work shortages in the sector.”
As part of the program, videos showcasing successful student placements in the NT have been released on social media.
Edwin Kiruja, a Charles Darwin University social work student originally from Kenya, talks about his student placement at Darwin’s Head to Health facility in one of the videos.
“The experiences that I got at Darwin Head to Health and being exposed to multi-disciplinary fields was very enlightening and it made me start thinking about going even further and studying my Masters in Mental Health,” he said.
NT Mental Health Coalition CEO, Geoff Radford, said local mental health organisations can offer students valuable career pathways by providing a broad range of work experiences.
“Student placements are not just for large organisations, smaller organisations also offer a great opportunity for students to be exposed to a range of different roles within the workplace,” he said.
“Students also bring a lot of energy and enthusiasm for learning and doing and can greatly benefit our grassroots mental health organisations.
“I encourage any mental health organisations or businesses to consider taking on a student placement and help bolster our mental health workforce here in the Northern Territory.”