An early intervention and preventative program to recognise and strengthen the personal assets of young people in the Corangamite Shire

BRICKs is a program to improve the emotional resilience of adolescents.  It is a collaborative approach that integrates a number of sectors such as, local government, health services, youth services and local secondary schools.

The program focuses on assisting young people to develop resilience. Resilience is the ability to ‘bounce back’ when faced with adversity.  It has been found that young people who have resilience skills have stronger connections to school, family and peers and therefore are less likely to develop significant mental health issues.

The focus of BRICKs is preventative and is aimed at:

  • building effective individual coping skills and abilities for dealing with life experiences  
  • encouraging active support between peers and the sharing of knowledge about mental health issues
  • broadening support and understanding across family, school and the wider community to strengthen connections and knowledge of where to seek help

The program has a student centred approach and provides an opportunity for young people to develop their own skills and self-awareness around anxieties, mental/physical health and overall wellbeing.  BRICKs assists in building on an individual’s capacity to ‘bounce back’ from a situation and knowledge of how to better manage their own pressures/choices/expectations. It is an informative and interactive program, which is conducted by facilitators from community organisations, teachers and school welfare staff.  All year 9 students in secondary schools including Hampden Specialist School across Corangamite complete the BRICKs program.

BRICKs Ambassadors

A peer selected group of young people from each participating school and who have completed the BRICKs program will undertake this program:

  • Training and skills development looking at leadership/peer support/event planning/community connections/ developing an understanding of health and wellbeing issues for young people across Corangamite
  • Develop/facilitate/coordinate health and wellbeing event at their school encouraging peer support/sharing of knowledge around mental health
  • Create connections between schools/Shire/health services/community organisations

The leaders come together for 3 sessions across the year to create connections and develop their skills with the aid of community leaders and the Supporting Corangamite Youth (SCY) network of services working with young people Corangamite for youth.

BRICKs and the BRICKs Ambassador programs are supported by the Corangamite Shire, Supporting Corangamite Youth, Health Services across Corangamite, YAC VIC Rural, headspace (Warrnambool), School Focused Youth Services, all secondary schools in Corangamite including Hampden Specialist School and the Victorian Government through the Engage! program.