Accessing support - COVID-19 (Coronavirus) pandemic
In these challenging and unsettling times, many families and communities have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Some have lost jobs and are in financial crisis. Others are experiencing increased anxiety and depression due to social isolation. Meanwhile, couples and families are facing relationship issues while in prolonged lockdown.
CatholicCare is here to help.
It is important to look after your health and wellbeing during these difficult times. Whether you are feeling stressed, overwhelmed, anxious or sad; talking to a counsellor can help.
If you are having relationship problems, we can also provide couples or family counselling.
We are offering FREE counselling via phone and video conference during the COVID crisis. You do not need a referral or a mental health care plan to access this service.
Learn more about how counselling can help below, or call one of our offices to make a booking.
We’ve seen a surge in enquiries for emergency financial support since the COVID-19 pandemic, so we know that families and individuals have been hit hard.
If you need support to pay for food, rent, utility bills or other necessities, visit our Emergency Relief page below to book an over-the-phone appointment.
Changes to other services
In light of the ever-changing situation, we are regularly monitoring information and advice from federal and state government sources and we have made some key changes to our service delivery. These changes reflect our duty of care to protect the health, safety and wellbeing of our clients, staff, volunteers and other stakeholders.
Please note the following changes:
Most of our staff are working from home, with the exception of a few who are maintaining essential back office functions. For those who are in the office, strict social distancing and hygiene guidelines are being followed.
Our doors are closed to visitors; however, we are still maintaining services. All telephone lines are open during standard business hours. We appreciate your patience as response times may at times be affected by the changes we have implemented.
2. One-to-one services
Most of our one-to-one services continue to be delivered via telephone or video conferencing options. This applies to counselling, emergency relief, family law programs, and refugee settlement services.
If you have an in-person appointment scheduled with one of our staff, you will be contacted to discuss how the session will go ahead - or if you would prefer to postpone or cancel your appointment, please let us know. No cancellation fees will apply during this period. During this time, our counselling services are offered free of charge.
There are a few exceptions where we are continuing to provide face-to-face support: e.g. pastoral support in prisons and youth justice settings; hospital chaplaincy (with some phone/telehealth); and occasional home visits in the Integrated Family Services and Adoption and Permanent Care programs.
3. Group activities
All scheduled group activities are suspended until further notice. This includes training sessions, workshops, homework clubs, English conversation groups etc. We will aim to resume these at the appropriate time; until then we will work to find ways to provide online support and/or training resources.
To protect the health and safety of volunteers, all volunteer programs have been suspended and there will be no new recruitment of volunteers until further notice.
5. Non-client meetings
All non-client meetings will be conducted via telephone or video conference. For existing appointments, staff will make contact with you to make alternative arrangements.
This is a quickly evolving situation and we are re-assessing our approach daily to ensure the continued safety of our community. We will keep you informed of any changes as they occur and we appreciate your understanding and cooperation during this time.
[ Last updated: 20 April 2020 ]