Free course for carers of mentally ill

A free, two-day course offering help and support to families and carers of people with mental health problems will be held in Lismore on March 8 and 9.

Being run by Carers NSW, the weekend course will give people the skills they need to care effectively for a person with mental health problems.

The course offers carers the opportunity to meet others in similar situations, learn more about mental illness and how to access relevant local services, develop coping skills and much more, all in a supportive environment, said Fiona Murray, Carers NSW education and training officer. It is vital these carers obtain support. By improving their skills and knowledge through this course, carers are able to help themselves as well as the person they are caring for.

One recent course participant (who wished to remain anonymous), a carer for two family members who both have mental health problems, found the course invaluable.

Ive been caring for 15 years and have been through periods of nearly giving up hope on my situation improving. Participating in the course was really empowering as it helped me realise I am not alone, and that there is a lot of help available out there, said the participant. I particularly valued the opportunity to meet and share experiences with other carers. Firm friendships were forged, with some of us planning to meet each month to support one another.

The course will run on Saturday and Sunday, March 8 and 9, from 9.30am to 5pm, with lunch and refreshments provided. Registration is due by March 1. Phone Fiona Murray at the Alstonville office of Carers NSW on 6628 6416 or 0437 371 191, or email fionam@carersnsw.asn.au.


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