Authors: Aspire a Pathway to Mental Health
Event: 2005 TheMHS Awards
Type of resource: TheMHS Awards
Award state: VIC
Award level: Winner
Award category: Recovery Program or Service
Abstract: Aspire a Pathway to Mental Health (Aspire) is a Psychiatric Disability Rehabilitation and Support service (PDRS) that has provided services in south west Victoria for over 9 years. During that time it has grown significantly showing leadership in the region and state. Aspire has refined service delivery and tailored services to local needs, making use of consumer ownership throughout. It has striven for excellence and has added a number of innovations to improve services. It has shown leadership by running a biennial conference for PDRS services, and is the lead agency amongst a number of NGO’s that have formed an alliance called Community Southwest. The Rehabilitation and Support service provides 75% of the services delivered by Aspire. Alongside the program is Sage Hill Carers Service and a substantial Health Promotion and Education program. Description of Facility/Organisation: Aspire was founded by a group of concerned community members, including consumers, carers and mental health professionals in 1989. The service was funded in 1996 and opened offices in Warrnambool, Hamilton, Portland and Camperdown, also merging in 1996 with Sage Hill Carers Service, which is funded under the Mutual Support and Self Help funding stream. In 2000 Aspire achieved recurrent funding of more than $1 Million, which since that time has increased to $1.3 Million. The agency employs 26 staff, or 17 EFT. Throughout the year Aspire supports more than 220 consumers, 150 carers, and reaches over 2,500 people in health promotion programs. 20% of consumers move on through the service per annum. Aspire has also attracted funds from a plethora of non recurrent sources for a range of programs, many of which are a part of the Health Promotion and Education (HP&E) program. Aspire recognised that HP&E was an effective adjunct to support and rehabilitation services and has found that there is a strong alignment of Health Promotion and Rehabilitative theory. This finding is at the core of Aspire’s success and is a fundamental issue that we wish to present in this Award submission, however we also wish to present the agency as a strong performer in a number of fields as a well rounded and effective model for rural PDRS services.
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