It’s okay not to feel okay, sometimes

In these uncertain, ever-changing and unprecedented times, feelings of being overwhelmed, worried and exhausted are becoming the ‘new normal’.   The physical and mental tolls are demanding on our bodies and our minds.  It is important we all pause to consider how we are coping and determine the best way to keep on top of our mental health.

If you or a loved one need support during this difficult time, visit your GP or see below for information about some of the mental health support services available in your area.

Switchboard: Provides peer-driven support services for the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and gender diverse, intersex, queer and asexual (LGBTIQA+) people, their families, allies and communities.  Q Life provides support via telephone 1800 184 527 or via WebChat  from 3pm to Midnight.

Beyond Blue: 24/7 Counselling Service – call 1800 512 348, or for COVID 19 specific support services, visit https://coronavirus.beyondblue.org.au/

Black Dog Institute:
The Black Dog Institute have developed a fact sheet that includes ways to check-in on your mental health, what to do if you are not coping and various useful online resources and tools.

If you have noticed signs that you’re not coping as well as you may have thought, BlackDog Institute has also outlined six practical steps that you can take to positively impact your mental health. One of which is creating a Self-Care Plan which Black Dog Institute has also provided a fact sheet. The sheet includes details on explaining self-care, steps on creating a self-care plan and several personal planning templates that we encourage you to use to help improve and maintain your mental wellbeing.

Lifeline Gippsland:  At the heart of their service is the Lifeline 24-hour crisis support line which provides people with support for a range of issues including depression and other mental illnesses, substance abuse, domestic violence and more. Telephone Crisis Support 13 11 14.

Suicide Prevention Training:   Free online training in suicide prevention to help people identify the warning signs of someone at risk, give them the confidence to speak to someone about their thoughts and provide them with the tools to connect those in need with professional care.   The training is offered by QPR (Question, Persuade and Refer) and is a short, self-paced course you can do from home.  All people living, working or studying in Gippsland are eligible for the free registration. This course is suitable for people that have not completed any prior training in suicide prevention or Mental Health First Aid.

New Access:  Developed by Beyond Blue and delivered by Wellways, NewsAccess is a free mental health coaching program for anyone 18+ and is living or working in the Gippsland region who feels stressed, anxious or overwhelmed about everyday life challenges, such as work, study, relationships, health and loneliness.

Head To Health A Federally funded digital mental health service directory.  Digital mental health resources are particularly beneficial for people with or at risk of mild to moderate mental health difficulties, or people supporting someone with mental health issues.  Also provides practical psychological skills to help you and your loved ones cope with anxiety and worry about infectious diseases

Mensline: phone 1300 789 978 – a telephone support, information and referral service, helping men deal with their relationship problems.

Nurse-on-Call: phone 1300 60 60 24 – a 24-hour telephone service that allows people to discuss any health-related issue with a registered nurse for the cost of a local call.

Parentline Victoria: phone 13 22 89 (8am–midnight, 7 days a week) – a telephone service for parents and carers of children from birth to 18 years old, which offers confidential and anonymous counselling and support on parenting issues.

Kids Help Line:  phone 1800 551 800 – a 24-hour telephone service that provides phone and online counselling service for young people aged five to 25.

Suicide and crisis support
If you are in an emergency, or at immediate risk of harm to yourself or others, please contact emergency services on 000.