With the extension of the COVID-19 lockdown for at least another two weeks, Lifeline Hunter Central Coast is urging local people not to suffer in silence if the impacts of the pandemic are weighing on their mental health.
Regional Manager, Julie Wicks, said Lifeline is services are available 24/7.
Wicks said extended lockdowns and restrictions mean people are feeling more anxious, more isolated or lonely, or struggling with consequent business and job impacts.
She said, nationally, Lifeline is continuing to receive a 25 per cent increase in calls since the surge in new COVID-19 cases began this July.
It expects to respond to more than one million requests for support this year.
“People on the Central Coast are having to negotiate extended lockdowns and altered school arrangements,” Wicks said.
“People are separated from families, and businesses have had reduced trade during what would have been a busy school holiday period.
“It is understandable to feel worried or overwhelmed; just having someone listen can make a big difference.
“Lifeline is here to listen and to offer hope via 13 11 14, text, or online chat.”
Wicks said free video counselling services are available at Wyoming during the current lockdown.
“Our qualified counsellors are there for anyone struggling with personal issues,” she said.
“The service is free, you don’t need a referral, and we have available appointments.”
Ms Wicks said everyone can help by giving people they know who may be living alone or vulnerable a call or a message.
“We can all get through this if we are kind to other and look out for each other,” she said.
She said Lifeline was always looking to hear from people who wanted to become volunteers.
Call Lifeline on 13 11 14 (24 hours); text on 0477 13 11 14 (6pm-midnight); chat online at www.lifeline.org.au (7pm-midnight); or book a counselling appointment on 1300 152 854.
Media release, Jul 14