LIFELINE AUSTRALIA WELCOMES VICTORIAN GOVERNMENT'S FUNDING TO PROVIDE CRISIS SUPPORT AND SUICIDE PREVENTION SERVICES FOR ALL VICTORIANS
Lifeline Australia, today welcomed the Victorian Government’s announcement of $1.2 million in funding for Lifeline’s critical crisis support and suicide prevention helpline in Victoria.
“This Government funding will help Lifeline to meet unprecedented demand for our services coming from Victorians”, Colin Seery Lifeline Australia CEO said.
“We congratulate the Government for responding so quickly to historic levels of demand for mental health services at present. As Acting Premier Merlino indicated it is important the Victorian Government is recognising the tough time Victorians have been through lately”, Mr Seery said.
As Australia’s leading helpline, Lifeline has continued to field significant demand for crisis support and suicide prevention services at levels well above those which preceded the compounding disasters of bushfire (2019/2020) and the COVID pandemic (2020/ongoing). Our national 24/7 crisis support line averages a call every 30 seconds and while the peak of the demand seen during the pandemic lockdowns of 2020 have receded there is no indication that pre-disaster volumes are likely in the foreseeable term.
“At times over recent weeks demand from Victoria has made up nearly a third of all calls to Lifeline and this funding will ensure that we can continue to meet that demand and help Victorians in need”, Mr Seery said.
This funding comes on top of the Victorian Government’s provision of a record investment in mental health and suicide prevention in the recent Budget.
Lifeline also welcomes the Victorian Government’s commitment to delivering the recommendations handed down by the landmark Royal Commission into the Victorian Mental Health system. One of the key recommendations was that the Victorian Government “collaborate with funded non-government helpline services to improve helplines’ connections with mental health and wellbeing services and to assist people to find and access treatment, care and support” (Recommendation 6).
“We look forward to continue to work with the Victorian Government as to how the recommendations of the Royal Commission, especially Recommendation 6, can be implemented”, Mr Seery said.
Lifeline’s physical footprint in Victoria comprises six sites in Geelong, South West Victoria, Ballarat, Central Victoria & Mallee, Melbourne, and Gippsland. Our six Victoria-based centres deliver a range of crisis support and suicide prevention services within their local communities.
Victorian Lifeline Centres provide essential staffing for our national digital services including phone and text: Combined, the Centres are staffed by over 250 paid specialist staff and over 500 crisis supporter volunteers.
Lifeline is Australia’s leading suicide prevention service, operating the 13 11 14 telephone line within 40 centres around the nation. The service expects to respond to well over one million requests for support by phone, online chat or text this year and will create an average of 120 safety plans to keep a person experiencing suicidal ideation safe every day.
To donate to Lifeline, visit www.lifeline.org.au/donate
To arrange an interview, please contact: email@example.com or phone: 0408 407 376
If you, or someone you know, is in need of support, please contact Lifeline on 13 11 14 (24 hours / 7 days) or chat to a Crisis Supporter at lifeline.org.au (7pm – midnight, 7 nights)