Suicide Prevention and Support
Bereavement is the period of mourning after a loss, especially after the death of a loved one. In the Nepean Blue Mountains region, a number of support groups provide comfort and support during this intense period of grief. When an individual is mourning the loss of a loved one or when struggling with suicidal thoughts, a group of of people can provide the valuable support they require to help them process the feelings they may be feeling during this difficult time. The Circle of Friends Parents Bereavement Support Group specifically focuses on providing support for parents who have experienced the loss of a child.
The Blue Mountains Inpatient Unit is a public mental health clinic for people with an acute mental health problem as well as people are suicidal or cannot guarantee that they will not harm themselves or others. There is a social worker, occupational therapist and part-time psychologist working at the ward.
People who call the centre directly will be advised to call the emergency department or be directed to Community Mental Health Teams.
Corner Great Western Highway and Woodlands Rd, Katoomba NSW 2780
People with an acute mental health problem, are suicidal or cannot guarantee that they will not harm themselves or others.
All people with an acute mental health problem who are suicidal or cannot guarantee that they won't hurt themselves or someone else.
Hours of Operation
Switchboard is open from 7:00am-10:30pm. After 10:30pm, a recorded message lists Emergency and Ward telephone numbers.
Lot 3 Woodlands Rd, Katoomba NSW 2780
Referred from Mental Health Access Line or by a psychiatrist or psychologist.
Crisis Access Teams (CAT) are acute teams that discuss any immediate mental health concerns and provide information about services that are available to assist. Following this contact, the person may be referred to other mental health services or staff from the team may provide short-term support.
People with acute mental health concerns.
Hours of Operation
7 days a week between 8.30am-10.00pm (outside of these hours mental health staff from Nepean Hospital will respond to any mental health enquiries).
Blue Mountains, Hawkesbury, Lithgow, Penrith
Referrals through the Mental Health Access Line (number below).
A Crisis Assessment Team (CAT) are multidisciplinary teams that provide short-term support for a person in a mental health crisis. They conduct assessments, discuss any immediate mental health concerns and provide information about services that are available. Following this contact, the person may be referred to other mental health services, be referred to a General Practitioner (GP) to develop a mental health plan or booked into an appointment with a psychiatrist for ongoing support.
A mental health emergency is a crisis situation where a psychiatric intervention is required. A psychiatric intervention is required:
- When a person is experiencing an ‘acute’ episodes due to substance abuse, extreme anxiety, depression or psychosis
- When a person has had a suicide attempt
- When a person has become violent or is experiencing rapid changes in behaviour
For all emergency situations call 000.
To access emergency mental health services in the Nepean Blue Mountains region, contact the central access line on 1800 011 511. The Central Intake Line is the first point of call for all Nepean Blue Mountains Local Health District (NBMLHD) / Hospital / Clinical services in the Nepean Blue Mountains region.
To talk to someone and describe your situation please call Lifeline on 13 11 14.
There are a number of helplines that operate to provide emergency support for people, carers and families going through a mental health crisis. In the Nepean Blue Mountains region, all emergency situations go through the Mental Health Access Line, however in other situations that an individual considers to be of an immediate concern can be accessed around the clock. Helplines that provide emergency support include the experience of rape, domestic violence, child protection, suicide attempts and homelessness.
Crisis and emergency numbers operate 24 hours, 7 days a week. They can be accessed by anyone, whether it is the person going through the crisis or a carer who needs immediate help and advice to support that person.
General Counselling are all those professional counselling services in the region that mediate, educate and support individuals and groups to build healthy relationship habits, manage conflict and share positive communication. Professional counsellors address a number of issues and provide options such as:
- Anxiety and depression
- Communication difficulties
- Family crisis
- Relationship issues
- Difficulties arising from family violence, sexual issues, depression, anxiety and other mental health concerns
- Parenting issues
- Child and adolescent behavioural and emotional issues (e.g. separation issues
- Grief, loss and bereavement
- Separation, post-separation and divorce issues
- Life transitions
- Family and parenting issues
- Men's Matters
Grow is a national organisation that provides a peer supported program for growth and personal development for people with a mental illness and those experiencing difficulty in coping with life's challenges.
Grow groups offer the opportunity for people to share challenges and solutions for recovery in a supportive and structured way. Meetings are held weekly. Group members use Grow's 12 Step Program as a means of change and personal growth.
172 Main St, Lithgow NSW 2790
No referral needed.
Helplines provide a means to get in contact with professionals over the phone and online. They provide face-to-face counselling, provide Needs Assessments and refer people to appropriate services. A person may wish to contact a helpline if they are experiencing a crisis or are experiencing an issue that may potentially damage their mental health. There are specialist helplines for:
- People who are experiencing or are at risk of sexual assault or violence
- People who are experiencing family and/or domestic violence
- People who are experiencing or are at risk of homelessness
- Preventing suicide
- Suicide bereavement services
- People requiring financial, drug, alcohol and gambling counselling
- Referring people to mental health support
- Referring people to youth, disability service, welfare or family mediation and child protection programs
- Rural outreach services
- Child counselling services
- Information, education and support groups
Lifeline is a 24 hour telephone counselling service for people in a mental health crisis. It provides all Australians experiencing a personal crisis with access to online, phone and face-to-face crisis support and suicide prevention services. These critical services are delivered by volunteers and professionals. Lifeline Centres' services are specific to the needs of local communities providing:
- Suicide prevention and bereavement services
- Face-to-face counselling
- Financial counselling
- Gambling counselling
- Mental health support services
- Youth services
- Disability services
- Welfare programs
- Rural outreach
- Family and mediation services
- Counselling services for children
- Education and support groups
- Aged care visitation
- Indigenous support services
- Disaster recovery
- Psychological first aid
- Drug and alcohol counselling
People experiencing a mental health crisis.
Hours of Operation
24 Hours / 7 Days a Week
Mental Health in Multicultural Australia provides a national focus for advice and support to providers and governments on mental health and suicide prevention for people from culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) backgrounds. This involves representation and support for CALD communities’ interests in the mental health sector and raising awareness of mental illness and suicide prevention in CALD communities.
There are various resources available on the website including mental health information in various languages, information on services and networks and a section on knowledge exchange.
PO Box 174, Deakin West ACT 2600
There are a number of Mental Health Inpatient Units in the Nepean Blue Mountains Region. These provide clinics for people with an acute mental health problem, are suicidal or cannot guarantee that they will not harm themselves or others. These units are staffed multidisciplinary teams which may include psychiatrists, psychologists, social workers and/or occupational therapists. Amongst the Mental Health Inpatient Units there is a specialist unit for older people as well as a Psychiatric Emergency Care Centre (PECC Unit) and a high-dependency ward for extreme acute episodes.
People who call these centres directly will be advised to call the emergency department or be directed to community mental health teams. As a result it is important to call the central access number on 1800 011 511 to gain access into one of these units.
The Network, formerly known as the Western Sydney Suicide Prevention and Support Network, is a not-for-profit organisation providing support groups for adults in the Hawkesbury, Penrith and Blue Mountains local government areas. The Network offers a safe space for people to meet and express their feelings, within the bounds of confidentiality, compassion and support.
Adults aged 18 years and over who have been affected by suicide.
Blue Mountains, Hawkesbury, Penrith
The SOS (Seek Out Support) service provides intensive support to people at risk of suicide, who are willing to engage with a service. Your GP will refer you to an SOS Provider who will make contact with you within 24 hours of receiving the referral. SOS Providers include psychologists, clinical psychologists, social workers and mental health nurse practitioners.
In some areas, you may be charged $10 towards the cost of each session.
Adolescents from 14 years upwards and adults who have expressed thoughts of suicide to their GP, family, friends or carers.
StandBy provides support to anyone who has been bereaved or impacted by suicide including individuals, families, friends, witnesses and first responders.
The following supports are offered by StandBy:
- Face to face, phone and online support for individuals and families
- Support with processes after a suicide such as coroners, funerals and media
- Specialised post-suicide counselling
- Information resources
- Support to access other local services
- One-on-one connections and support groups with other people bereaved by suicide
- Training and workshops for communities and workplaces to build skills to respond to a suicide
Blue Mountains, Hawkesbury, Lithgow, Penrith
The ‘Stronger Together’ campaign was developed after Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people from urban, regional and remote communities across the country repeatedly asked R U OK? if there could be work done to create a culturally appropriate R U OK? campaign. An advisory group of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander leaders and influencers was formed to develop this.
The website contains videos, posters, a conversation guide and more to remind everyone in every community to ask someone in their mob who might be struggling, "Are you OK?".
The Suicide Call Back Service is a 24 hour, nationwide service that provides free telephone, video and online counselling. Their professionally trained counsellors have specialist skills in working with suicide-related issues and they can help you to work through the pain and distress you may be feeling.
Hours of Operation
24 Hours / 7 Days a Week
No referral required.
A support group is a small group of people who meet regularly to discuss personal experiences, problems and strategies for coping with being a mental health consumer. Some support groups meet online however a number of groups meet face-to-face on specific issues. In the Nepean Blue Mountains region there are support groups for:
- Drug, Alcohol and Gambling
- Mental Health Conditions such as anxiety, depression and obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD)
- Mental Health Carers and Family Members (including carers who look after someone with dementia)
- Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Intersex (LGBTI) people
- Women suffering from domestic violence
- People who are suicidal or a family member who has experienced the death of a loved one due to suicide (bereavement)
- Perinatal Depression
For more information, please visit the Support Groups page.