The Queensland Family and Child Commission (QFCC) has released data from its online community servicesdirectory – oneplace, in a bid to highlight some of the commonly searched pressures being experienced byQueensland families this year.
Food, counselling and housing support were the three highest search terms in 2019, urging the QFCC andParentline to remind families that they should reach out for help from the thousands of local servicesfound on oneplace – an online community services directory with over 55,000 services listed acrossQueensland.
QFCC Principal Commissioner Cheryl Vardon said the QFCC saw a 100% increase in searches in theDecember to January period last year.
“The holiday season can be a financially and emotionally tough period for many Queenslanders, so it wasno surprise to see a spike in searches for support during this time,” Ms Vardon said.
“There can be increased pressures for individuals, families and whole communities with changes in incomeand employment, financial strain, relationship issues as well as caring for children during the holidays andwanting to give them the best.”
Ms Vardon said it was also a particularly tough time for Queenslanders as summer also brings the threat ofnatural disasters.
“We know Queenslanders are strong. We see their resilience every year as they are tested by thedestruction of these events, but they also need to know there is help available and they needn’t do italone,” she said.
“Asking for help can be daunting, especially if you’re not sure if you’re contacting the right service for yourneeds or questioning whether you need the support at all.
“If you’re uncertain, then its best to reach out anyway. Most services can be contacted by email, andthey’re equipped to point you in the best direction to meet your needs.”
Ms Vardon said it was important to check-in with family and friends over the Christmas period and toencourage them to reach out if you see them struggling.
Parentline, a service of yourtown, provides professional counselling, education and support for parentsand carers of children and young people 7 days a week with the phone service listed on oneplace.
yourtown CEO Tracy Adams said parents and carers struggling over the holidays can reach out toParentline, even just to talk through an issue with someone with a trained and supportive ear.“People call for all sorts of reasons including family crisis, conflicts and behavioural challenges,” Ms Adamssaid.
“Some even call to share good news, or to simply just talk about their parenting.”
Oneplace covers a range of support services for issues like food relief, health, family violence, employment, disabilities, addictions, housing and parenting.For more information or to find support in your local area visit www.oneplace.org.au