New counselling office opens doors for veterans
IPSWICH veterans and their families now have greater access to mental health support services with the opening of a new permanent Open Arms – Veterans & Families Counselling office.
Minister for Veterans’ Affairs Darren Chester said the previous Open Arms office in Ipswich was a satellite office.
“The new office, centrally located at 10 Brisbane Street, is in close vicinity to RAAF Base Amberley, the largest Air Force base in Australia, and the place of employment for thousands of current Australian Defence Force (ADF) members and their families,” Mr Chester said.
“The new location offers veterans and their families a modern, well equipped, easily accessible and family friendly site with additional counselling rooms and large open office spaces to ensure they are well-looked after.”
Open Arms has seen a 35 per cent increase in counselling sessions provided to the ex-service community in the last 12 months, and this increase is expected to continue throughout the coronavirus pandemic.
Senator for Queensland Paul Scarr, who is based in the Ipswich region, said the increase in those accessing counselling services illustrated the message about seeking mental health support was being heard, particularly in the ex-service community.
“Reaching out for support is incredibly important during uncertain times and veterans and their families in the areas surrounding RAAF Amberley here in Queensland will now have a better resource to provide that support,” Senator Scarr said.
“If you are a veteran or family member who may be struggling or in need of additional support, I encourage you to call Open Arms 24/7 on 1800 011 046 or visit OpenArms.gov.au to find more about services available.”
Open Arms was founded by our Vietnam veterans and is their enduring legacy of ensuring all veterans and their families can access free and confidential mental health support.
The Ipswich Open Arms office is one of five in southern Queensland. For further information on Open Arms locations, visit OpenArms.gov.au.