Rotary Club of Ballarat

Club visit to Cooinda Health and Wellbeing Hub 12th May 2022 Gallery

Last Thursday evening saw about 17 Rotarians and guests visit Cooinda Health and Wellbeing Hub in Learmonth Road, Wendouree. CEO Sean Duffy kindly led us through the recently refurbished facility. Cooinda is part of the Ballarat Community Health.

 Cooinda is a Mental Health and Wellbeing Hub for the Ballarat Community in Wendouree area. The main ethos for this project is for anyone to walk in off the street and receive support. It's free and it provides mental health services for children right through to any age group.

 There are about 20 staff working at this facility and it is funded by both State and Federal Governments. The refurbished Cooinda is deliberately designed not to look like a Health Facility and the aim is to make clients feel more comfortable with coming to and using the facility. The intention is to create a therapeutic environment with clinical work (therapy, counselling, treatment,) along with facilities for non-clinical work and peer group work.

 This facility exists as a result of the Mental Health Royal Commission. Cooinda is seeing about 100 new people per month. The normal presentation is anxiety and depression, and some drug induced psychosis. They also run alcohol and other drug counselling programs.

 The building has a children's wing where a lot of neuro developmental psychology, family therapy and children's therapy, children's counselling, family violence counselling takes place. The other part of the building contains individual consulting rooms, and some group therapy rooms.

 Sean said that sadly they have already outgrown this building and it has only been operating for about 12 months and their challenge is how they can meet the growing community demand.

 Overall, it was an enlightening visit to Cooinda and an opportunity to gain a limited understanding of mental health issues in our community.