• to increase 
    young people's knowledge of 
    mental health
    and wellbeing

  • to improve young people's self-care strategies and promote help-seeking behaviour

  • to improve
    young people's 

    connection to their peers, families, and communities 

  • to provide leadership pathways to young people

How was Space4Us developed?

Space4us builds on extensive knowledge gained over a number of years on what is most helpful to young people and their families when they are living with a family member with a mental illness. 

It evolved from Paying Attention to Self (PATS), a program originally developed in 1993 by the Centre for Adolescent Health at the Royal Children’s Hospital. PATS has been running in various parts of Victoria since then.

The Space4Us partnership undertook a review of the PATS program, its content, and its capacity for statewide implementation, and developed Space4Us over two years.

To support the local implementation of Space4Us, FaPMI coordinators are embedded within area mental-health services in Victoria. The development of peer-support programs within a collaborative framework is a key performance indicator and is core to the work of the FaPMI coordinators.


We wish to acknowledge the following for their contribution to the development of the Space4Us program:


  • Helen Rimington, who developed the original PATS program at the Centre for Adolescent Health;

  • The Centre for Adolescent Health, for giving us permission to use and adapt the material from the Programme Guide;

  • Katharina Verscharen and Sylvia Marov, who further developed and implemented PATS over many years and provided PATS facilitator training via their consultancy firm, V&M Consulting;

  • The FaPMI coordinators, who helped to develop this guide: Tracy Seawright; Rose Cuff; Zoe Edmonds; Cheree Cosgriff; Dawn Foster; Rochelle Hine;  and Helen Carter;

  • The Bouverie Centre, for being the auspice organisation for the FaPMI Program and for providing space for training.

  • The Space4Us Program partnership.

Space4Us focuses on early intervention and prevention in pursuit of these key aims:

© 2017