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Ongoing mental health support available for flood-affected communities

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01 December 2022

Western NSW Local Health District (WNSWLHD) is reminding families and communities that ongoing mental health support is available for those impacted by recent flooding events across the region.

Helen McFarlane, WNSWLHD Acting Director of Mental Health, Drug and Alcohol, said it is incredibly important for people to look after their mental health and wellbeing during such a distressing time.

“We know how distressing the impact of flooding and natural disasters can be, not just immediately but also long-term as our communities begin their recovery efforts,” Ms McFarlane said.

“We’ve had a range of clinicians and teams on the ground in flood-affected areas recently and we will continue to provide ongoing support, and connect people with the services most appropriate to their needs.

“Along with our mental health clinicians and teams, our specialist Rural Adversity Mental Health Coordinators and Rural Recovery Response Peer Workers are available to provide support to people in rural areas.

“They can also help connect people with other organisations providing flood relief services, and also help educate our communities on what they can do to look after their mental health and wellbeing during times of adversity.

“I encourage people to remember that challenging times do pass, but we will always be here if you need support. A number of our services are available around-the-clock, so you can reach out when the time is right for you.

“If you aren’t sure where to go for help, or just need some advice and guidance on what might be the best service for you, the WNSWLHD Mental Health Line is a wonderful place to start.”

The WNSWLHD Mental Health Line (1800 011 511) is staffed by local clinicians who can provide support or connect people to appropriate services. People can also contact Lifeline on 13 11 14 or the Suicide Call Back Service on 1300 659 467.

For more information on the Rural Adversity Mental Health Program,  visit https://ramhp.com.au/.

In an emergency situation, or if anyone is at risk, people should call Triple Zero or present to their nearest emergency department.