Mental health support is high on the agenda for Griffith community group Young Veterans and First Responders Murrumbidgee.
Tuesday March 16 the Young Veterans will be hosting Fortem Australia for their members and the broader community hoping to bring attention to preventative mental health support for first responders.
"We are having two sessions with Fortem to hopefully build some connections with our vets and first responders in the area so that they are more aware of the impact of mental health," Michael Borg coordinator of Young Veterans and First Responders said.
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"The biggest problem we have in small communities is mental health. In our area and the surrounds there is not a lot of mental health support."
Mr Borg has been instrumental in facilitating Fortem to come out to Griffith and says the idea to bring them here is to see what further support can be offered to his community.
Fortem is an Australia wide network of supports for first responders who understand that while their work is vitally important, it's often confronting, traumatic and dangerous.
First responders are more than twice as likely to have suicidal thoughts and to experience high psychological distress. More than half of all emergency responders are deeply impacted by the trauma faced in the course of their duties and this can have an impact on their family members as well.
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The Young Vets became a charter in 2019 and they don't charge membership fees.They aim to connect vets and first responders with support through secondary services if needed. Ultimately however, they are a group of like-minded individuals who understand and can empathise with the work they do or have done for our communities, something that Mr Borg said is vital for their long term well being.
Sessions will be held at the Griffith RFS Control Centre on Wakaden street from 1.30pm to 3pm and then again from 6.30pm to 8pm and anyone is welcome to come along.
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