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We’re with you every step
Adjusting to and living with a vision condition can be challenging. Looking after your emotional and mental wellbeing is important, and you never have to do it alone. Connect with others who share similar experiences in our Quality Living Groups.
Quality Living Groups
Our emotional support groups are confidential, safe and supportive. You can discuss the issues relating to your vision loss.
Led by experienced coordinators, they provide useful knowledge on how to function in the world with blindness or low vision. They offer tips on:
- Adjusting things at home.
- Building the confidence to move around your neighbourhood.
- Advice on maintaining friendships.
- Understanding easy-to-use technology that can help you do the things you love.
How it can help
Learning to live with your vision condition can be an empowering experience. Connecting with those who have lived through a similar experience is a good first step in regaining your confidence and living life on your terms.
Peer Support Groups
The Peer Support Program provides one-on-one telephone support to people who request to talk to someone who is blind or has low vision about coping with vision loss.
The service is available for people across all life stages, including parents and carers who would like to speak to other parents and carers. You would be matched to a trained volunteer with similar characteristics.
The person you speak to may:
- Have a similar eye condition or level of vision loss.
- Be of a similar age.
- Have similar family circumstances (e.g. the client and the Peer may both have children).
- Have experience in study or starting a new job.
- Have a common interest or recreational activity with the client.
How it can help
A personal connection with someone who can relate to what you’re experiencing can help you feel understood and guide you on your journey with vision loss.
Crisis support services
Vision Australia does not offer Crisis Support Services and is not available for counselling or support outside scheduled appointments.
If you or someone close to you is experiencing an emergency or is at immediate risk of harm, call triple zero 000.
To talk to someone, call:
- Suicide Call Back Service – 1300 659 467. Suicide Call Back Service is a free nationwide service providing 24/7 phone and online counselling to people affected by suicide
- Lifeline – 13 11 14. Lifeline Service is a national charity providing 24-hour crisis support and suicide prevention services
I need help but it's not urgent
It is important that you get the support you need. For example, if you’re feeling overwhelmed, having a bad day, facing stresses, or dealing with anxiety or depression. In Australia, general practitioners (GPs) can conduct mental health assessments and treatment or refer you directly to a mental health professional. It is important that you make an informed decision about the support that is best for you.
There are many options for telephone counselling and support. See the services listed below:
- Kids Helpline - 1800 551 800 kidshelpline.com.au is Australia’s only free 24/7 support service specifically for children and young people aged 5 to 25 years and their parents, offering confidential and private counselling and mental health and wellbeing information and referrals.
- Mensline - 1300 78 99 78. MensLine Australia is a free telephone and online counselling service offering support for men anywhere, anytime.
- Beyond Blue - 1300 22 4636. beyondblue.org.au provides mental health support 24/7 for people who are concerned about anxiety, depression or suicide.
Many of these helplines also offer counselling via online text chat services. Visit their websites above for details.
You can visit Head to Health, an online gateway funded by the Australian Government that can help you find other free and low-cost, trusted phone and online mental health resources.
How does phone support work?
- Call: These helplines are FREE, (local call cost may apply).
- Wait: A counsellor will take your call. Try taking some deep breaths if you feel nervous while you wait.
- Speak with a counsellor: They will ask some questions and work with you to understand your situation. They will help you feel supported and can explore options for support. You'll be listened to without judgment, and treated with respect. Your conversation will be private and confidential. You can choose to stay anonymous if you wish.