• Annemarie Taylor

If you're down, have a chat on warmline

Plenty of people in the Hawkesbury are under pressure at the moment, not least due to the Covid pandemic with its knock-on effects of job losses, cut hours, or even having your spouse working at home fulltime. Sometimes all you need is a chat and a bit of a break, so the launch of an innovative mental health peer support phone line that is free to call is a major plus.

The NSW government funded BEING supported ‘warmline’ is a service you can call just for a chat with a friendly listener, and get more help if you need it.

NSW Minister for Mental Health Bronnie Taylor said the unique service offered an alternative for people who preferred not to initially speak to a doctor or nurse.

“There is no need for a referral, anyone can call this fantastic service which is staffed by trained staff who have been through mental health issues and emotional distress themselves,” the minister said.

“As well as providing that much needed connection through shared experience, the team can provide referrals to other services if more help is needed.”

Hawkesbury state MP Robyn Preston added, “This is there for anyone who needs help and would like to have a friendly, confidential conversation with someone who understands what they are going through.”

BEING is the NSW peak body for people with lived experience of mental health issues. The NSW Government is providing $800,000 to the organisation to run the service as a six-month pilot until the end of 2020. The outcomes of the pilot will be independently evaluated. This funding is part of the $80 million package the NSW Government announced for the COVID-19 mental health response. The warmline is available seven days a week between 10am to 4pm and 6pm to 10pm. If you would like to have a conversation with a mental health peer worker, the number to call is 1800 151 151. For more information, visit: https://beingsupported.org.au/

Pic by Nathan Cowley

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