Carole Walton is a counsel volunteer for Lifeline at the Ipswich Showground.
Carole Walton is a counsel volunteer for Lifeline at the Ipswich Showground. Sarah Harvey

Counsellor demand is increasing

LIFELINE Ipswich staff are bracing for a high level of demand as Ipswich flood victims come to terms with their loss.

Lifeline Ipswich and West Moreton centre manager Diane Bos said the organisation was already seeing a big demand for counselling services.

“The reality is starting to set in,” Ms Bos said.

“People have been through the crisis and are emotionally at their end.”

She said the organisation’s community recovery teams had been providing support to individuals and families in the Ipswich and Somerset regions and the Goodna corridor.

“Our role at the moment is psychological first aid,” Ms Bos said.

She said it was also a hard time for children of all ages.

“They are faced with a new school year and are quite distressed at being away from their homes, toys and possessions,” Ms Bos said. “They are facing a real lack of security.

“It is not only the adults who need help; children are having trouble getting through this.”

Lifeline recovery worker Debbie Olsen said in the long term they were anticipating increased need as people re-settled into new communities.

She said in the short term staff had reported older people who feared having to start again, families worried about how they were going to get their children ready for school, and volunteers struggling to cope with the tragedy they had encountered.

Normally based at Caboolture, Lifeline counsellor Carole Walton has been working in Ipswich and Rosewood as part of the recovery team and said people were feeling a real loss of security and stability.

Ms Walton was meeting with locals at the Ipswich Showground.

For help, people can contact Lifeline on 13 11 14.



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