Online lifeline for residents in times of need
Published on 07 September 2023
Western Downs Regional Council, Queensland Police Service and Darling Downs Health have joined forces to launch an online support directory for Western Downs residents in need.
SupportFinder.org.au is a repository of valuable support resources for residents in times of need. Through the digital platform, individuals will be able to quickly search for assistance from national, state, regional, and local support services, 24 hours a day.
Western Downs Regional Council Spokesperson for Community and Cultural Development Councillor Kaye Maguire said Council was proud to be supporting a valuable resource which aims to assist our community during overwhelming and challenging times.
"We are so fortunate on the Western Downs to enjoy a wonderful lifestyle and active, vibrant communities but sometimes we face incredibly tough situations beyond our control. Anyone can find themselves in a challenging situation, and if that happens, we want to make sure that residents know that support is available," Cr Maguire said.
“SupportFinder.org.au offers one location for immediate support across a variety of issues such as addiction, mental health, crime, health, disability, homelessness, domestic violence, or other crisis situations.
"As a Council, we are committed to providing access to quality essential support services, and our aim in supporting the launch of SupportFinder.org.au is to inform and reassure the community that assistance is readily accessible and to raise awareness about its availability to our community members.
"To ensure accessibility for our region, Council has committed to distributing 5,000 Support Finder referral cards across the region in locations such as Customer Service Centres, Libraries, Visitor Information Centres, and Neighbourhood Centres within the Western Downs region.
Cr Maguire said the community could also learn more about the new platform at a special community event hosted by the Primary Health Network this weekend.
"Support Finder cards will also be available at the Primary Health Network's Twilight Picnic at Thomas Jack Park this Sunday 10 September from 4pm, an event being held in honour of World Suicide Prevention Day,” she said.
"The free community event will include food and drink, entertainment, facepainting, a gratitude tree, and a lighting of candle in remembrance of lost ones.
“We know that on the Western Downs 'it's the people that make it', and this is a wonderful opportunity for everyone to come together to show just how strong, supportive and resilient our region can be.
Former social worker Denny Edwards said there was a need within the community for those who were experiencing mental health crisis events and situational stresses to be able to access time appropriate information and direct counselling on a 24hr basis.
"In rural regions, addressing emotional crises through local services may face constraints due to limited operating hours and staff availability." Mr Edwards said.
"A crisis can occur for an individual and/or family at any time. So, by supporting the launch of this platform, we are providing information and emotional support through a resource that is both quickly available and easily accessible.
For more information on SupportFinder.org.au please visit www.supportfinder.org.au/
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Western Downs Regional Council Media Office 07 4679 4265