Wellbeing In The Pilbara


Wellbeing In The Pilbara

Newman Senior High School, Newman WA

After the Newman Senior High School community experienced a suicide loss, the students felt that more could be done to address mental health issues. Newman is located in the Pilbara region of Western Australia, a 9-hour car drive north of Perth. It’s a mining community of around 6,000 people with a lot of people regularly moving in and out for work. This means it can be a very isolating place to live and work and there’s a devastatingly high rate of mental health issues within the community.

The Newman Senior High School students realised not many people knew how or where to get help for mental health issues, or even how to talk about it. They decided to raise awareness of mental health issues and the support options available by opening up the conversation through a radio show called Wellbeing in the Pilbara. The show was broadcast on the local radio network and it’s had a significant impact on the community.


Inspired Citizens

The Inspired Citizens program was established in 2017 by FYA and the Australian of the Year Awards to empower young people across Australia to do great things in their communities. Over 150 students from 12 secondary schools across Australia created projects to address issues they care about in their communities. FYA supported each school with a full day codesign workshop, a $500 grant to get projects off the ground and a teacher toolkit mapped to curriculum.

The results were incredible. Projects ranged from street art in the city of Darwin to promote inclusion, a local radio show addressing mental health issues in the Pilbara, to peer-led workshops with primary school students in Frankston. These short films document just a small amount of the hard work that went into all of these great projects that are still having an impact in communities across Australia.


If you’ve come across this video and it’s brought up issues for you relating to mental health, it’s important to remember you can get help. The following services are free to access: 

You can also find out more about accessing mental health support in Australia in this article. If you are in immediate danger dial 000.



In 2017, FYA partnered with the Australian of the Year Awards to deliver the Inspired Citizens program. The program aimed to help young people recognise their potential to create and lead positive change in their communities. Who knows, some of these young people might even be future Young Australians of the Year! 

Everyone can have an impact in their own community

Every year, The Australian of the Year Awards recognises the achievements and contributions eminent Australians have, whether it's within their local community or across the globe. They inspire others through their achievements and challenge us all to make contributions towards a better Australia. Visit the Australian of the Year Awards website to find out about more people making a positive impact.