Accessing mental health support during the bushfire emergency

ACON’s counselling services are available to those needing support during this difficult time. We acknowledge the trauma and pain many in our communities are experiencing as a result of the current bushfire emergency – and ACON is here for assistance for anyone experiencing distress.

The effects of the bushfires are far-reaching – as well as devastating our natural environment, it also impacts on the mental health and wellbeing of people and communities. Distress can be overwhelming and those with a history of trauma, have a pre-existing mental health condition, are elderly or isolated may be particularly vulnerable.

If you are in distress or in need of support, please reach out for help to people around you, your local GP or healthcare provider, or other support agencies.

Community members needing mental health support can contact ACON. Call your local office during business hours for information about our counselling services or visit our website.

• ACON Sydney: (02) 9206 2000
• ACON Northern Rivers: (02) 6622 1555
• ACON Hunter: (02) 4962 7700
• ACON Southern and Far West Regions (Regional Outreach): (02) 9206 2114

Disaster Welfare Services at Evacuation Centres and Disaster Welfare Assistance Points can also help. For practical assistance call the Disaster Welfare Assistance Line 1800 018 444.

You can also contact the following for mental health and wellbeing assistance:

• Q Life - 1800 184 527
• Mental Health Line - 1800 011 511
• Beyond Blue - 1300 224 636
• Lifeline - 13 11 14
• Mensline - 1300 789 978
• Kids Helpline - 1800 551 800

For further information on bushfire recovery assistance, visit the NSW Government’s Disaster Recovery Page on Facebook.

For more on health, air quality, temperatures and other health information relating to bushfires, visit the NSW Ministry of Health Bushfire Health page.

ACON joins others in thanking the volunteers and emergency service personnel fighting bushfires and assisting with recovery efforts. The fire risks are ongoing so we urge everyone to continue looking out for each other, stay safe and provide assistance to those in need of support.

For information on where and how to support the bushfire relief effort, check out this article from the ABC.

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