With the final weeks of 2016 upon us, it’s a time to reflect on the past year and what the New Year will bring, but for some, this time of year is challenging. Fortunately, many online and phone services remain open to offer vital support to those facing tough times this festive season. Headspace and Cancer Council are just two of the services people can turn to if it all gets too much.
The holiday season can pose many challenges for people who are affected by cancer, but by using the range of services available, people affected by cancer can discuss their experiences and share coping strategies to help normalise concerns this festive period. The new Cancer Council Online Community provides anyone who has been affected by cancer the opportunity to connect, share experiences, and find information and support in a safe forum. It’s available 24/7 from any online device, regardless of location.
Cancer Council NSW’s Lead Supportive Care Manager, Hannah Baird said the Online Community aims to reduce isolation by encouraging people affected by cancer to share their stories with other people in similar situations.
“What we are seeing through our peer support programs is more and more people are now turning to digital platforms for information and support, to connect with others who can relate to what they are experiencing.”
The Cancer Council 13 11 20 telephone information and support service is still available over the holiday period. For
more information about Cancer Council Online Community, visit: www.cancercouncil.com.au/OC
The beginning of a new year can also be a turbulent time for many young people. They may be facing some big life changes like starting a new school, awaiting exam results to get into higher education, or commencing employment. When normal routines change and daily structure is altered it can cause pressure, which can be compounded by missing regular contact with friends or having to financially support themselves.
During these times, it is valuable for families and friends to be aware of signs and symptoms that something might be wrong with their loved ones. Being withdrawn, expressing ongoing worry, or irritability are just a few changes to look out for. If you need support or advice, headspace is here to help. The National Youth Mental Health Foundation, headspace, provides support to young people aged 12-25 years old who are going through a tough time. This can include support around mental health, physical health, work and study, or alcohol and other drugs, and the service is also open to parents.
Visit headspace.org.au for mental health and wellbeing resources, or access help via eheadspace.org.au for online and telephone support between 9am-1am seven days-a-week.