About this guide
This Practical Guide is a resource designed especially for the Aboriginal Mental Health Worker Training Program.
The Aboriginal Mental Health Worker Training Program is a workplace-based training program under the broader NSW Aboriginal Mental Health Workforce Program. NSW Health has allocated specific funding for employing, training and educating additional Aboriginal Mental Health Workers within mental health services. They are recruited as Trainees to full-time, permanent positions to undertake on-the-job training and a relevant degree course. Upon the successful completion of the workplace training, university study and clinical placement requirements, new graduates are fully qualified to provide mental health services to any person presenting with a mental health problem or concern. There is also funding for State-wide coordination, Aboriginal clinical leadership positions, support and resources.
The guide aims to focus, direct and support the different people, teams and mental health services participating in the Program. It draws on the experiences of those individuals and teams who have employed and trained Trainees and on the views of Trainees themselves about what has worked well for them and what needs greater attention.
Who is this guide for?
This Practical Guide is specifically designed for mental health staff implementing the Training Program. It is recognised that the main responsibility for developing the Trainee as a mental health professional is located in the workplace with the Line Managers, clinical supervisors and team members, supported by clinical leaders and complemented by the knowledge gained through university study. The sound practices outlined in this Guide form the basis for workplace training programs that will lead to the development of competent and confident mental health clinicians who are Aboriginal.
It is also useful more broadly for those involved in Aboriginal health workforce development.
How to use this guide
Each chapter has a number of supporting documents and resources. The explanatory text and some of the supporting documents are PDF files and cannot be changed. Other supporting documents are Microsoft Word documents and can be downloaded, modified (for example, specific Area Health Service information and logos can be added) and printed as needed to suit the different teams in the different Area Health Services. Acknowledgment of the original source of these documents is expected when they are adapted for local use.