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Knox was confirmed late yesterday as the spot for the new headspace centre for youth mental health in Melbourne’s outer-east.
The youth mental health hub will operate in the old Centrelink building at Knox Ozone and will help youth from the cities of Knox, Maroondah and Yarra Ranges.
The centre is expected to be helping clients before the end of the year.
A consortium of community health services earlier this year recommended Knox to the federal government in preference to Ringwood in the City of Maroondah.
Federal Ageing and Health Minister Mark Butler has selected the Eastern Ranges GP Association — soon to be known as the Eastern Melbourne Medicare Local — to establish Melbourne’s outer-east suburban headspace.
ERGPA chief executive officer Kristin Michaels said the organisation was thrilled about the announcement and what the centre would offer young people.
She said the centre would house doctors, nurses, counsellors, psychologists, youth and mental health workers, and employment services.
‘‘It will also provide a space for young people to connect, create and talk about things that might be worrying them,’’ Ms Michaels said.
Knox and Maroondah councils battled to win the outer-east headspace centre location.
After the media reported in April that the consortium had recommended Knox, Maroondah mayor Rob Steane maintained Ringwood was the best site because it was a major transport interchange for young people.
Knox mayor Adam Gill yesterday praised the hard work of council officers and ERGPA for their work on the successful bid.
He also thanked the federal government for its commitment to mental health services in the area.
Youth advocate Anthony Osborne told the Weekly young people were in ‘‘tears of joy’’ when he told the them headspace centre would be in Knox. ‘‘To say they’re very happy would be the understatement of the year.’’
Aston federal Liberal MP Alan Tudge, a long-time campaigner for the Knox siting, said he was ‘‘ecstatic’’ with the decision.
“I am very excited about this. It is the culmination of a year-long campaign … thousands of people in our local community have got behind our efforts and made this a reality.’’