Australian youth still have limited awareness of headspace: results from a national survey

Marie Bee Hui Yap, Nicola J Reavley, Anthony F Jorm

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


The aim of this paper is to assess Australian young people s awareness of mental health services available for their age group. Of particular interest was awareness of headspace, which was created in 2006 to provide youth-oriented mental health services, and has expanded to 30 centres nationally in 5 years.Method: In 2011, a telephone interview was conducted with a national sample of 3021 Australians aged between 15 and 25 years. Participants were asked questions about awareness of mental health organizations, where they would seek help for themselves and how they would assist a peer with a mental health problem.Results: There were very low frequencies of spontaneous mentions of headspace as a mental health organization, or as a service where respondents would seek help for themselves or refer a peer to. However, when prompted, about half of respondents recognized headspace as a mental health organization. Living within a headspace service area predicted better recognition of headspace. However, past-year psychological distress was unrelated to recognition of headspace as a mental health organization.Conclusions: In order to reach them more effectively, young people need to be aware of youth-oriented services that are available to them and their peers. Awareness campaigns need to be targeted to the subgroups of young people who have the greatest need for headspace services, namely those with recent mental health problems.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)28 - 34
Number of pages7
JournalAustralian and New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2012
Externally publishedYes

Cite this