The Andrews Labor Government will more than double the capacity of Victoria’s Youth Prevention and Recovery Care (YPARC) network, giving more young Victorians access to the mental health services they need closer to home.

Member for Dandenong, Gabrielle Williams, today announced the Andrews Labor Government is funding major upgrades to the existing YPARC centre in Dandenong.

An investment of $141 million in the Victorian Budget 2021/22 will see new 10-bed residential facilities built in Ballarat, Geelong, Shepparton, Heidelberg and Traralgon – as well as the existing YPARCs in Dandenong, Frankston and Bendigo being completely refurbished and modernised.

A key recommendation of immediate priority from the Royal Commission into Victoria’s Mental Health system, YPARC services provide around-the-clock clinical care on a short-to-medium term basis for people aged 16 to 25.

The sites reduce pressure on hospital beds by providing early intervention care and an alternative to hospital admission with recovery-focused treatment.

The facilities will be designed by NTC Architects to create a welcoming and home-like environment with private bedrooms and ensuite bathrooms.

Communal kitchens, dining and living areas, breakout spaces and an outdoor garden will also encourage rest and recovery – as well as support family visits for people during their recovery.

Delivered by the Victorian Health Building Authority, construction of the five new facilities and refurbishment of the three existing YPARC centres will support around 400 local jobs right across the state, with all projects to begin construction next year, and be completed by late 2023.

The YPARC facilities follow the adult Prevention and Recovery Care (PARC) facility model, providing tailored support for young Victorians to match the 22 adult PARCs across Victoria delivering the early intervention support people need to recover quickly in a home-like environment, providing an alternative to inpatient hospital admission.

Quote attributable to Premier Daniel Andrews

“We’re not wasting a moment delivering the Royal Commission’s key recommendations – and we’re giving young Victorians across the state support and care when they need it the most.”

Quote attributable to Minister for Mental Health James Merlino

“We know how much better people’s health outcomes are when they get treatment and care close to their family, support networks and local community – so we’re delivering youth mental health facilities right across Victoria.”

Quote attributable to Member for Dandenong Gabrielle Williams

“Mental illness doesn’t discriminate – this is an unprecedented investment in young people in Dandenong making sure that support is available close to home for every single young Victorian.”