Authors: Child & Youth Mental Health Service, Royal Children’s Hospital and Health Service District (CYMHS RCH & HSD)
Event: 2005 TheMHS Awards
Type of resource: TheMHS Awards
Award state: QLD
Award level: Finalist
Award category: Mental Health Promotion or Mental Illness Prevention Program or Project
Abstract: The “KOPING Kids Kall Out” CD is the product of a project involving graduates of the Koping Adolescent Peer Group, a peer support program designed to assist young people cope with the challenges, emotions and experiences of living with a parent with a mental illness. The CD contains three original songs, written and performed by a group of seven young people aged 12- 16 years. One of the main aims of the project was to support young people in overcoming the effects of the social isolation and alienation which are often experienced in many cases of parental mental illness. Ultimately, the key driving force behind this project was the young people’s willingness to share their experiences with the aim of helping others who may be in similar situations. The CD has been distributed across Australia and is being used to raise awareness of the issues impacting on children of parents with a mental illness. Description of Facility/Organisation: In 2002, the Royal Children’s Hospital Child and Youth Mental Health Service established and “championed” the Koping Project as an early intervention resource to prevent children of parents with a mental illness developing problems themselves. The KOPING Project is currently funded for two years to support children, young people and families who may access services across the wider community including child and youth services, adult mental health services, general health services and community agencies. The KOPING Project provides resources and supports across three health service districts including the Royal Children’s Hospital, the Royal Brisbane and Women’s Hospital, the Prince Charles Hospital, and associated Health Service Districts. The three districts provide services to a combined population of approximately 600,000. As the KOPING Project has a health promotion, prevention and early intervention focus, the clients accessing the resources and activities are not required to be active clients. The clients are identified within child and adolescent and adult populations, and may move in and out of activities as they wish. The Koping Project is a unique project within Queensland Health, with the position being located in one health district only, and having one Project Officer position.