From 2009, SOLAS expanded service delivery into regional areas and has implemented an innovative and creative program that has enhanced the quality of life and well being of people who live with a mental illness in rural and remote North Queensland. SOLAS has undertaken a process that has resulted in the empowerment of small, regional communities to develop and provide quality support services by locally managed organizations that deliver local services for local people. Before the implementation of the SOLAS program, the five rural and remote communities of Charters Towers, Ingham, Burdekin, Hughenden and Palm Island had NO community based support services for people with mental health conditions.
Funding provided by FaHCSIA through the Personal Helpers and Mentors Program (PHaMs) and National Respite Mental Health Development Program for direct service delivery, has been provided directly to the five sub-contracting organisations by SOLAS to enable them to deliver services locally in an effective and timely manner. These Service partners include:
Charters Towers Neighbourhood Centre, New Way Agencies, Flinders Shire Council, Ingham Disability Support Services and Burdekin Flexible Support Services.
SOLAS has created a vision and taken a leadership role in the development and implementation of the rural and remote mental health service model that delivers local services to local people in their own community. The program is innovative and creative and is producing great outcomes for people isolated by distance in our vast State.