There are many local, state and national organisations that provide dedicated information and support to carers. These services are focused on providing support to carers, recognising that this is critical to support carer health and wellbeing, as well as the sustainability of the caring role.
The key services to be aware of include:
Carer Gateway is the national network of support services in Australia. Carer Gateway services are free to access for anyone caring for a family member or friend who is living with a disability, a long term medical condition, mental illness, alcohol or drug dependency or someone who is frail due to age.
Services are available online, over the phone and in-person. Carers can connect with their local provider and be assessed for the supports that may benefit them.
Carer Gateway services include:
To access these supports, call Carer Gateway on 1800 422 737 (Monday to Friday) or visit www.carergateway.gov.au/. For emergency respite, Carer Gateway can be contacted 24/7. In Sydney Local Health District, Carer Gateway services are provided through The Benevolent Society.
Carers NSW is the peak (non-government) organisation for Carers in NSW and the only state-wide organisation that has Carers as its primary focus. Carers NSW is part of a national Network of Carers Associations and works collaboratively to lead change and action for Carers.
Carers NSW works with all carers regardless of their age, location, life-stage or circumstances. This includes those caring for individuals with support needs relating to ageing, disability, health and mental illness. Carers NSW is based in Sydney, with regional offices in Coffs Harbour and Newcastle and provides a range of services to support carers across NSW.
Lifeline is a national charity providing all Australians experiencing emotional distress with access to 24 hour crisis support and suicide prevention services. If you would like to talk to someone, contact Lifeline on 13 11 14 (24 hours, 7 days a week) or visit www.lifeline.org.au/ to connect with someone online. In an emergency, always contact 000.