Below are some resources for carers and information about supportive resources if you feel depressed.
Association for the relatives and friends of the mentally ill (ARAFMI)
ARAFMI is a non-profit community based organization dedicated to supporting and advocating for family members and carers of people with a mental illness. They run peer support groups and education and training courses for carers about mental illness and ways to cope. Consumer peer support groups are also available. Their numerous services include outreach services, information and help with accessing health services, respite, legal and financial advice. They offer Carer Helplines and on-line services (moderated message board and chat room) for carers. Branches include:
ARAFMI NSW: www.arafmi.org.au
Ph: (02) 9887 5897 carer helpline: (02) 9805 1883
Mental Health Carers NT: www.mentlhealthcarersnt.org
Ph: (08) 89481051, Fax 08 8948 2473 Mail: PO Box 40556, Casuarina NT 0811
ARAFMI QLD: www.arafmiqld.org
Ph: (07) 3254 188. Carers from outside the Brisbane area can access the 1800 toll free service: 1800 35 1881.
ARAFMI TAS: www.arafmitas.org.au
Southern region carer helpline: (03) 6228 7448, PO Box 464,Launceston, TAS 7250
Northern region befriender service: (03) 6331 4486 Business Hours
Mail: PO Box 717, Moonah, TAS 7009
ARAFEMI VIC: www.arafemi.org.au
Ph: +61 3 9810 9300 carer Helpline: 1300 550 265
ARAFMI WA: www.arafmi.asn.au
Phone in Perth: +618 9427-7100 and they have services in a number of other areas in WA including rural areas.
Carers Australia www.carersaustralia.com.au
Ph: 1800 242 636.
Carers Australia and the network of carers associations in each state and territory provide services for carers including counseling, advocacy, education and training.
Mental Illness Fellowship of Australia: The WellWays program:www.mifa.org.au
Ph: 1800 985 944.
MIFA is a non-government, not-for-profit organization aimed at supporting and advocating for people with serious mental illnesses and their families. They have developed the WellWays program for family and friends. This is a carer led group program that provides information on mental illness, helpful ways to cope and take care of yourself. It is currently being evaluated to assess its helpfulness.
Multicultural Mental Health Australia (MMHA)
MMHA is funded by the Australian Government to promote mental health and prevent suicide amongst culturally and linguistically diverse groups (CALD) in Australia. They focus on providing information for carers and consumers about mental health issues, navigating the mental health system, personal stories and articles and resources. Information and factsheets about mental illness and ways to deal with it are available in over 20 different languages. There are also reference groups and self-help groups for carers and the same for consumers. Carers and consumers also have the option of joining the speakers bureau which involves giving talks about your personal experience to help educate people about mental illness. Consumer Advisory Groups enable consumers to help plan mental health services and policy.
National network of adult and adolescent children who have a mentally ill parent (NNAAMI) www.nnaami.org
Ph: (03) 98893095 best after 4. 30 pm EST and book a time to talk.
Mailing address: P.O. Box 213 Glen Iris Victoria Australia 3146.
The website has online forums, information and resources for young adult and adolescent caregivers, for example tips on developing a family management crisis plan. The organisation advocates for children, adults and adolescents who have a mentally ill parent to obtain services and reduce stigma.
COMIC (Children of Mentally Ill Consumers) www.howstat.com/comic
Mailing address: The Secretary, P O Box 310 Marleston, Adelaide, SA, 5033.
This organization was established by adult children of people with a mental illness. It advocates to improve information and supportive resources for children and young people affected by the mental illness of a parent, and to assist parents with a mental illness. COMIC offers a ‘family support kit’ and ‘child’s care plan’ to help children and parents to cope with times when the parent is ill.
Reach out www.reachout.com.au
This website has a section for young carers on supporting a family member. There is also information for young people on different mental health problems, alcohol and drugs, suicide and family issues and a section on where to get help.
Relationships Australia www.relationships.com.au
Ph: 1300 364 277.
This organization offers information, skills training courses, resources and online support with relationship problems.
Support if you are depressed:
Below are a few more resources that may be helpful if you are depressed. Some of the organizations and websites in the section on information and support with bipolar disorder, may also be useful to contact for more about dealing with depression or anxiety.
It provides information on treatment, helpful resources and an online support group for people suffering from depression. This site has been evaluated and was found to help relieve depression
Depressiveservices offers a variety of interactive online services, such as peer support and free counselling
Mood GYM www.moodgym.anu.edu.au
This website assists people with depression to use cognitive behavioral strategies to relieve and prevent depressive symptoms. It was found to be helpful in relieving depressive symptoms when people worked through it systematically in a research study.
e-couch has information and evidenced based online therapy for people with anxiety or depression.