Albany services stand ready to support community members in crisis this Christmas season

Sarah MakseAlbany Advertiser
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Anglicare WA Great Southern service manager Jo Fictoor, City of Albany’s Paul Nielsen, Katrina Houdrrani, Albany Youth Support Association chief executive Ian Clarke, Acting Senior Sergeant Vaughan McKay, Kim Thorp, Pivot Support Services chief executive Ian Neil and Sergeant Damien Smith.
Camera IconAnglicare WA Great Southern service manager Jo Fictoor, City of Albany’s Paul Nielsen, Katrina Houdrrani, Albany Youth Support Association chief executive Ian Clarke, Acting Senior Sergeant Vaughan McKay, Kim Thorp, Pivot Support Services chief executive Ian Neil and Sergeant Damien Smith. Credit: Laurie Benson/Albany Advertiser

Albany support services and police are calling on the community to look out for friends and family who may be experiencing violence, drug and alcohol abuse or financial hardship this Christmas period, with support available for those who need help.

Anglicare WA Great Southern service manager Joanna Fictoor said local agencies were urging anyone who might need extra support over the holidays to reach out.

“Financial stress, family violence, alcohol and drug use and access to affordable housing are the key issues facing many in our community at present,” she said.

“These stressors impact mental wellbeing and the safety of the whole family.

“It is important that the community is aware that there are several local and Statewide agencies available for support leading up to and during the Christmas period.

“Churches are also available to help with food relief over Christmas, through support from Foodbank.”

Ms Fictoor said women experiencing family violence often experienced higher levels of abuse during the holidays.

“Local support services are asking the community to look out for friends, family, and neighbours this Christmas with calls for support relating to family violence, and drug and alcohol related matters are expected to peak,” she said.

“In addition, the wellbeing of young people during this time must not be overlooked, social issues affect the whole family.

“Albany is fortunate to have services such as Young House, for 15-25 year-olds and the Albany Women’s Centre for women and children experiencing family violence, with both these services open for the duration of the Christmas break.”

Great Southern Police District family violence co-ordinator Sergeant Damien Smith said Albany police would continue to provide 24/7 coverage and urged the community to report family violence.

“The effects of family violence are devastating with early intervention vital to minimising the trauma suffered by victims and their children,” he said.

“The WA Police Force and our family violence stakeholders stand ready to assist victims and their families over the festive season.”

For help call:

Albany Women’s Centre (Refuge): 9845 6000

DVAssist: 1800 080 083

Albany Youth Support Association - Young House: 9842 2082

Lifeline: 13 11 14

Crisis care: 1800 199 008

Emergency Relief and Food Access Service: 1800 979 777

Alcohol and Drug support line (country callers): 1800 198 024

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