In a life threatening emergency dial Triple Zero (000)

In a life threatening emergency dial Triple Zero (000)
ACT Public Hospitals

Canberra Hospital

5124 0000

Calvary Hospital

6201 6111

Mental Health

Call Mental Health Triage on

1800 629 354

(free call except from mobiles or public phones) or

6205 1065

Poisons Hotline

For a poison emergency in Australia call


Drug and Alcohol Help Line

The Drug and Alcohol Help Line is available 24-hours, 7 days a week on

5124 9977

Health Protection Service

For after hours urgent public health matters including environmental health, radiation safety, food poisoning and communicable disease management phone:

(02) 6205 1700


24 hour health advice

1800 022 222

ACT State Emergency Service

Emergency help
during flood or storms

132 500

Community Services and Support

In these unprecedented times, Canberrans of all backgrounds may need some extra support.

The ACT Government recognises this and offer number of initiatives to support vulnerable Canberrans at this time.

Need assistance accessing support and services?

The Helpline operates on 02 6207 7244 between 8am and 8pm daily.

Register for Assistance and/or Food Relief

You can apply for emergency food relief or for assistance accessing supports by filling out this form.

Community Service Information

Health Advice

Untitled Document

Questions About COVID-19?

The ACT Government has established a helpline to assist the community through the challenges of COVID-19.

The Helpline is to help the community stay informed and to access services related to COVID-19, including for businesses.

The Helpline operates on 02 6207 7244 between 8am and 8pm daily.

For health questions, including information on symptoms, call Healthdirect on 1800 022 222.

In an emergency, call triple zero (000) for urgent medical help.

National Coronavirus Helpline

Call this line if you are seeking general information on coronavirus. This line operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week on 1800 020 080.

Mental Health and Counselling Support

Untitled Document

Mental Health and Wellbeing during COVID-19

Contact: (02) 5124 9977 or (02) 51240000
Get immediate support; Ways you can support your own mental health and wellbeing; Supporting others and their mental health and wellbeing; Useful information and interesting reads.

Visit website:


Contact: 131114  for 24/7 for crisis support and suicide prevention services
Crisis Support. Suicide Prevention. Lifeline is a national Charity providing all Australians experiencing a personal crisis with access to 24 hour crisis support and suicide prevention services. We’re committed to empowering Australians to be suicide-safe through connection, compassion and hope.

Visit website:

Kids’ helpline

Contact: 1800 55 1800
Ever wondered why you feel anxious? Understanding anxiety and your brain can help you better manage anxiety. 24/7 private and confidential phone and online counselling service for young people aged 5 to 25

Visit website:

Beyond Blue

Contact: 1300 22 4636
We all have good days and bad days. Then there are those days when something isn't quite right, you've got something on your mind, or things just seem too much. Whatever it may be, sharing the load with someone else can really help. So no matter who you are, or how you're feeling, you can talk it through with us – we'll point you in the right direction so you can seek further support.
Call 24/7 for advice, referral and support from a trained mental health professional

Visit website:

MensLine Australia

Contact: 1300 78 99 7824/7 telephone and online support
MensLine Australia is a telephone and online counselling service for men with emotional health and relationship concerns. They are available to help anywhere, anytime.1300 78 99 78

24/7 telephone and online support for men with emotional health and relationship concerns

Visit website:

Suicide Call Back Service

Contact: 1300 659 467 24/7 free counselling

Suicide Call Back Service is a nationwide service that provides professional 24/7 telephone and online counselling to people who are affected by suicide. Get immediate help now by selecting one of our counselling services below. 1300 659 467 24/7 free counselling and support for people at risk of suicide, carers and bereaved

Visit website:


Contact: 1800 650 890
Support and information for young people 12-25 for mental health and what's going on in their life

Visit website:

Westlund Counselling by Meridian (formerly AIDS Action Council)

Contact: (02 )6257 2855
Counselling and mental health support for LGBTIQ+ individuals, families and allies.

Visit website:

Relationships Australia

Contact: 1300 364 277
Relationship support services for individuals, families and communities

Visit website:

Women’s Health Counselling

Contact: 5124 1787

Short, medium and long-term counselling on a range of issues is available.

Visit website:

Victim Support

Contact: 6205 2066 or 1800 8222 72

Offers counselling to anyone who has been affected by domestic violence in the.

Visit website:


Contact: 6287 226
Work with young men offering counselling and mentoring.

Visit website:


Contact: 1800 184 527
3pm - midnight, every day
Phone and online anonymous and free LGBTI peer support and referral for people in Australia wanting to talk about sexuality, identity, gender, bodies, feelings or relationships

Visit website:

Head of Health

If you’re trying to improve your own mental health, or support somebody else with mental health issues, Head to Health provides links to trusted Australian online and phone supports, resources and treatment options.

Visit website -

Support for Housing Tenants


As of 10 June 2020, Housing ACT have begun making payments.

If you have not spoken with Housing ACT about the payment, please contact us on 6207 1345, Monday to Friday between 8:30am – 5pm AEST.

If you have already spoken with Housing ACT about your payment, there is no need to contact us again. If there is an issue with your payment, Housing ACT will contact you.

General Housing ACT information:

For your safety and the wellbeing of our staff please call or email us instead of coming into the Central Access Point (Housing ACT shopfront) in Belconnen.

For tenancy related matters, there are a number of ways you can provide information or get in touch with us:

  • 6205 4681 (Intake and Stabilisation)
  • 6207 9166 (Southern Region)
  • 6207 1345 (Northern Region)
  • 6207 1395 (Intensive Region)

If you do need to come into the Housing ACT shopfront, we have put extra measures in place for your safety including:

  • limiting the number of clients to five at any point in time within the shopfront
  • providing hand sanitizer, single-use wipes and single-use pens
  • extra hygiene and cleaning arrangements
  • marking social distance spacing on the ground in and around the shopfront to support safe queuing.

More information on access to Housing ACT


Supporting the Homeless Sector

Housing ACT has met with critical service providers within the homelessness sector to better understand business continuity issues, including free food services and congregate living providers. Housing ACT will continue to work regularly with these groups to identify triggers for support, as well as slow the spread of the virus through vulnerable communities.

While standard face-to-face service delivery is still available, non-essential services are being delivered online or over the phone for the safety of staff and clients. Maintenance work continues to operate around the clock and the safety and security of properties will continue to be a priority.

Housing ACT is contacting all public housing tenants to check on their wellbeing, with an early focus on vulnerable tenants. These phone calls will also be used to obtain current bank information for the prompt payment of the ACT Government’s $250.00 stimulus payment for households in public and community housing.

The ACT Government announced on 2 April 2020 additional support for the community sector across the Territory experiencing the financial impact of COVID-19. Included in the support package is full rent relief for users of ACT Government community properties for six months from 1 April 2020 to 30 September 2020.

The support package includes properties that are rented to community housing providers through Housing ACT’s Housing Assistance Asset Program. Our community housing sector provides a critical service across the Territory, and this package provides direct financial support so you can continue to focus on providing essential services as the health crisis unfolds. I trust this rent relief will give you the ability to work proactively with tenants to provide additional support and rent relief, particularly for tenants who have lost their income as a result of COVID-19.

Rental Support

Residential Tenancies Declaration for Covid that means you can’t be evicted if you can’t pay rent due to Covid19. It also provides the ability to negotiate reduced rent.

Visit website:


Contact:1800 176 468
Ground Floor, Nature Conservation House, 153 Emu Bank, Belconnen, ACT, 2617

Free Meals, Laundry & Showers, Emergency Relief, Short Stay & Low-Cost Accommodation

VolunteeringACT’s Community Info Hub provides a homelessness services guide, updated fortnightly, with information on free meals, laundry and showers, emergency relief and food pantries, short stay and low-cost accommodation

Visit website:

Financial Counselling

The Salvation Army’s, Moneycare Financial Counselling service

When people use Moneycare they can expect to be treated with respect, understanding and patience.  Moneycare is a free service and is  independent, unbiased, thorough, private and confidential.

People can expect Moneycare to:

  • comprehensively evaluate their financial position;
  • identify and develop options for treatment of any debts (including advocacy with creditors if needed);
  • identify and educate them on concessions, rebates and other benefits available;
  • collaborate with them to develop their immediate and longer-term money plans (to make their money work for them)

Moneycare will work with the person/family for as long as it takes to reach the stabilisation they need.

For more information on the Moneycare service, please contact:

View website:

No Interest Loan Scheme

The Salvation Army have financial and residential criteria. The criteria's are: You need to hold a Centrelink Health Care or Pensioner Concession card, or; Your after-tax income needs to be $45,000 or under for singles, and $60,000 or under for people with dependents

View website:

National Debt Helpline

Calling this line will enable access to phone advice from a financial counsellor or triage for face to face financial counselling.

Money problems can happen to anyone. While you might feel embarrassed about seeking help,  financial counsellors aren’t judgmental about your circumstances – they’re here to offer you free, confidential and independent advice.

You never have to pay for this advice. Don’t agree to pay fees for financial counselling, advice about debt or to fix your credit file. The government funds financial counsellors nationally.

The National Debt Helpline number is:  1800 007 007.

View website:

Aged Care

Aged Care

Telephone: (02) 51242613

The Rehabilitation, Aged and Community Services provides integrated and effective services for rehabilitation, aged care and community care throughout the ACT. This includes healthcare and support for people with acute, post-acute and long-term illnesses. They aim to improve the quality and accessibility of services to our clients and promote care that covers the prevention, assessment, diagnosis, treatment, support, rehabilitation and maintenance of conditions. They work closely with other healthcare providers to improve communication between primary, acute, subacute and community healthcare services. They offer a range of aged care services, including:

Visit website:

My Aged Care

Telephone: 1800 020 080

My Aged Care aims to make it easier for older people, their families, and carers to find information on ageing and aged care in Australia. We provide online information and trained call centre staff to help you get an older person’s needs assessed and to find and access services.

Visit website:

Older Persons ACT Legal Service (OPALS)

National Elder Abuse Hotline: 1800 ELDER Help (1800 353 374)

Older Persons ACT Legal Service (OPALS) is a specialist service within Legal Aid ACT. It provides legal help to older people in Canberra. They can help you with legal issues involving elder abuse, enduring powers of attorney, guardianship and financial arrangements with family members. We will also refer you to other services if needed.

Visit Website:

Commonwealth home Support Programme

Telephone: 1800 200 422

As you get older, everyday tasks can become more difficult. Even though you need help, you may still want to live at home. Asking for help doesn’t mean losing your independence or moving out of home.

The Commonwealth Home Support Programme (CHSP) helps senior Australians access entry-level support services to live independently and safely at home.

CHSP works with you to maintain your independence rather than doing things for you.

Visit website:


Supporting Seniors

Following the National Cabinet meeting of 29 March 2020, the Prime Minister has urged older Australians aged 70 years and over to stay at home as much as possible to reduce the risk of infection.

This does not mean you cannot leave your home, rather you should exercise caution, avoid crowds and maintain physical distancing wherever possible.

The ACT Government values the role that our older Canberran's play in the community.

During this difficult time, it is more important than ever to support seniors in our community and do what we can to ensure their safety and well-being.

We want to ensure that seniors can continue to access essential services including health and housing.

We are all operating under new provisions, however, we are implementing measures with a balance of compassion and common sense to support seniors in our community to get through this challenging time.

We encourage all in our community to help us create a community of care and where you can please look out for seniors not only in your life but also in your neighbourhoods - times of isolation can be particularly harder on seniors.


COTA ACT continues to staff the Seniors Information Line which is open Monday to Friday, 9:00am - 5:00pm with staff that are available to take your calls, and listen to your concerns and provide advice.

They will be able to provide detail on the following services:

  • ACT Seniors Cards and discounts
  • social activities
  • aged care and retirement options
  • household assistance
  • transport
  • community and government services.

The Seniors Information Line can be reached on 6282 3777 or you can visit the COTA websiteExternal Link

Food Relief

The Canberra Relief Network (CRN) has been established in response to the community’s increasing demand for food and non-perishable essential items, following the COVID-19 Pandemic. The CRN is a collaboration and network of a number of community services organisations in the ACT.

The CRN is here to support the vulnerable in our community who have been impacted by this unprecedented health and economic crisis. The CRN has the capacity to support people impacted by the COVID-19 Pandemic such as: casual workers, international students, people in isolation due to COVID-19 infection, carers of individuals with COVID-19, people with disability, health challenges or chronic illnesses.

The CRN provides a central point of contact for individuals and connects them to the local services closest to them. There are a number of CRN community partners across the Territory, demonstrating the collective efforts that are being done to support vulnerable Canberrans during this time.

The CRN is here to help. To make contact, please call 1800 43 11 33 or visit Link

Woolworths and Coles have also launched services to support vulnerable people to access delivery services, which you may be eligible for. Further information can be found at the following links:


You can get tested for COVID-19 in the ACT if you have the following symptoms:

  • Fever of 38 degrees or greater (or recent history of fever such as chills or night sweats); or
  • Respiratory infection (such as shortness of breath, cough, or sore throat).

In addition, people who have sudden onset of loss of smell, loss of taste, runny nose, muscle pain, joint pain, diarrhoea, nausea, vomiting or loss of appetite may be eligible for COVID-19 testing, after assessment by a health professional.

Further information on being tested can be found on the ACT Government COVID website at, Link

Children, Youth and Family Services

Child protection and out of home care services remain open

Keeping children safe and supported is an essential focus for the ACT while we all work through the COVID-19 pandemic. Our Child and Youth Protection Services (CYPS) are continuing to operate.

CYPS has made some changes to the way we provide our services based on advice of health and government leaders to help stop the spread of COVID-19. We remain focused on protecting the health and safety of all families we work with as well as our dedicated staff. Please be assured, CYPS staff are still here to help you.

The following information answers some common questions you may have. If you have a different question, please contact your case manager who can help you.

Keeping children and young people safe: A shared community responsibility

Now more than ever, we ask all members of our community to look out for children, young people and families that may be struggling during this stressful time. With social distancing measures in place, they may be feeling isolated and unable to connect with the services or people they usually turn to for help.

Checking in with people who may be vulnerable can help lift their spirits and help them get support if needed. Think about making phone calls, sending text messages or connecting online. Ask how they are going and if there is anything they might need help with.

Essential services are still operating:

  • If you believe a child is in immediate danger, contact the Police by calling 000.
  • If you suspect a child is at risk of abuse or neglect by a family member, carer or guardian, use the online form External Link to report your concerns.
  • If your concerns relate to abuse outside of a family context, contact ACT Policing on 131 444 to make your report.
Multicultural and Temporary Visa Holders

Do you speak a language other than English?

Where you can find translated health advice

The Australian Government has developed a range of fact sheets and information resources in a range of languages available on the Australian Government's Health website

The Office for Multicultural Affairs has shared the link and advice on these fact sheets and information resources with the ACT multicultural community via the E-news, has posted translated versions up at the Theo Multicultural Centre and shared with Inter-directorate ACT Language Services Policy contact people.

Resources are currently available in Farsi, Italian, Simplified Chinese, Traditional Chinese, Arabic, Vietnamese and Korean on a range of issues including public transport; schools, students and parents; and isolation guidance.

Are you a Temporary Visa Holder?

The ACT Government is helping temporary visa holders and international students during COVID-19.Many people on temporary visas are not eligible for Job Keeper.

We are providing $450,000 to support these Canberrans. This funding will help those who are unable to go home, work, or receive Australian Government support. It will also help with the basics, so people can survive this period. The funding will be managed through a partnership between: For Canberrans seeking asylum, please contact Companion House Reception on (02) 6251 4550.

You can also email Companion House at

You need to have lodged a protection application with Department of Home Affairs.

For Canberrans on other temporary visas, please contact the Red Cross ACT Migration Support Program HUB on (02) 6234 7695.

Visit website:

Are you looking for services and programs to support the ACT?






Canberra Relief Network

The ACT Government is working together with community partners, including Uniting Care Kippax, Oz Harvest and The Foodbank to provide urgent food and essential items through a food pantry.

This new food pantry will ensure vulnerable people in our community can access supplies they need for themselves and their families during this challenging time.

If you are in isolation, if you are elderly, if you have a disability, if you have lost your job or you’re not sure how you will put food on the table, please get in touch by calling 1800 43 11 33 or emailing or for more information visit

Vulnerable Canberrans and others affected by COVID-19.

Open 9:30am to 2:30pm, Monday to Friday.

Welcome 2 Canberra

The Welcome 2 Canberra program welcomes new arrivals to Canberra as well as provides information and access to a range of services across Canberra that can enhance their settlement and sense of belonging.

The Welcome 2 Canberra ‘Go-To-Service’ provides answers to enquiries, assistance with the completion of forms and referrals to other services. Examples of what you can access through the Go-To-Service include assistance with the completion of Centrelink forms, ACT Government registrations, employment applications, migration forms and banking forms.

The Welcome 2 Canberra hotline (1800 512 234) is an instant information service for anyone calling from anywhere. The hotline is managed by Multicultural Hub Canberra staff during business hours and provides information, referrals and services to callers.

New arrivals to Canberra

Open 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday.

MARSS Australia Settlement Hub

Migrants, refugees, asylum seekers and humanitarian entrants can access support through MARSS’:

Emergency relief service -  supermarket gift cards, food hampers, financial assistance through payment of bills, utilities and transport, provision of essential items and services (clothing, medication and medical bills). This service is available to anyone in need. MARSS is delivering gift cards and food hampers to people unable to attend the office.

Asylum Seeker Homelessness service – supports asylum seeker men, women and families facing homelessness through accommodation, payment of rent and utilities, and casework, advocacy and referral.

Casework, advocacy and referral services – for migrants and refugees under the Settlement Engagement and Transition Support Program (SETS).

For more information please contact MARSS Australia by phone 02 6248 8577, email or visit our website at

MARSS Australia will recommence delivering all settlement programs through a mix of online and face to face delivery from July.

Migrants, refugees, asylum seekers and humanitarian entrants.

Open 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday.

Australian Red Cross

The Humanitarian Settlement Program (HSP) provides support to humanitarian entrants to build the skills and knowledge they need to become self-reliant and active members of the Australian community. HSP Service Providers support clients to achieve outcomes in the following areas as a foundation for successful settlement in; employment, education and training, physical and mental health and well-being, managing money, community participation and networking, family functioning and social support, justice and language services.

Specialised and Intensive Services (SIS) is a component of the Humanitarian Settlement Program (HSP) available to humanitarian entrants and other eligible visa holders who have complex needs. SIS offer clients short term needs-based support to help them access appropriate mainstream services and develop the necessary skills to manage their needs independently.

COVID-19 Emergency Relief is available assist people on temporary visas (including international students) who have become vulnerable due to COVID-19. Emergency payments are available for people on temporary visas who have no access to Centrelink or other support payments, have no income and have urgent essential needs.

Humanitarian Entrants referred by Home Affairs

Eligible vulnerable people on eligible visa types for

Specialised Intensive Services

Temporary visa holders and International Students facing hardship due to COVID19

Open 9am to 4:30pm, Monday to Friday

Multicultural Hub

Multicultural Hub Canberra is providing relief services through its ACT offices in Canberra and Gunghalin and through its centres across NSW, including offices in Queanbeyan, Goulbourn, Cooma and Bega.

The primary focus for the Multicultural Hub is providing support to clients who have lost employment and have limited or no access to benefits.

You can contact Multicultural Hub by calling 02 6100 4611 or emailing

Migrants, refugees and asylum seekers

Open 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday.

Companion House Assisting Survivors of Torture and Trauma

Companion House continues to provide support to asylum seekers and refugees, including:

  • virtual counselling services conducted mostly   by phone
  • urgent casework and emergency relief services
  • a food pantry with essentials relevant to   client communities (for example, bulk rice, cooking oil etc.)
  • home delivery of food, essential medications   and other essentials for those clients identified as vulnerable.

Companion House’s medical service also remains open primarily via tele-health, though some consultations are still being conducted face to face.

You can contact Companion House for more information by calling 02 6251 4550 or emailing

Asylum seekers and refugees

Open Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday

All counselling services are being delivered over the phone.

HelpingACT Incorporated

HelpingACT has established a food station at 14 Daniels Street, Franklin to support refugees, asylum seekers and Canberra’s homeless populations.

You can contact HelpingACT by emailing or visit the website for more information:

Refugees, asylum seekers and Canberra’s homeless populations

Available when called in advance.

Victim Support ACT

Victim Support continues to provide clients with information, case coordination, safety planning and access to brokered counselling. This work is primarily being done by phone and email.

You can contact Victim Support ACT using the Human Rights Commission contact us form or by calling 1800 8222 72 or 02 6205 2066.

Victims of crime in the ACT.

Open 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday.

St Vincent de Paul Society Canberra-Goulburn (Vinnies)

The St Vincent de Paul Society continues to deliver many of its support services to the ACT community.

The St Vincent de Paul Society Helpline remains open and available to direct requests for assistance to the available support in the relevant region and is delivering some practical items and resources to clients’ homes, where necessary.

St Vincent de Paul Society Centres will remain open only in line with Government and local government direction.

You can contact St Vincent de Paul Society via the Helpline on 13 18 12 or by calling 02 6282 2722 or emailing

All vulnerable members of the community

Open 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday.

Legal Aid ACT

Legal Aid has expanded its Helpline to deliver most of their legal advice and assistance support services. It is encouraged to provide the number to any individual who needs legal assistance or advice.

Legal Aid is also adapting its court and tribunal services to align with advice from Health authorities and Court directions.

You can contact Legal Aid by calling 1300 654 314 or emailing

All vulnerable members of the community needing legal assistance or advice

Open Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday from 8.30am to 4.30pm and

Wednesday from 8.30am to 8.00pm.

Face to face appointments in urgent and necessary circumstances.

Support for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders Peoples

Supporting ACT Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples

Individuals already experiencing ill-health are at an increased risk of severe disease from exposure to COVID-19, and we recognise Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities already experience a burden of disease much greater than other Australians.

While current instructions on COVID-19 apply to all Australians, the ACT Government is working directly with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community organisations to ensure critical services that are culturally appropriate continue to be delivered at this challenging time.

The impacts of social isolation and restrictions to movement on the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, a people who are highly mobile, highly engaged with community events, and so strongly connected to family, land, and culture, is recognised by the ACT Government.

Community input and suggestions are welcome on how we can adapt and provide flexible and novel solutions to minimise negative consequences to mental and social wellbeing during this time while protecting each other’s physical health.

It is important we recognise the strength of the ACT Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community, and the wealth of cultural knowledge they bring to this country. It is critical we protect and support the community to look after one another and get through this challenging time together.

We are working with community to raise awareness of measures to prevent exposure and the importance of social distancing.

Key ACT Government and community controlled services are still operating for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in Canberra, and service users are being encouraged to check websites and call ahead to see what options are available for service access, including flexible arrangements to support individuals to remain home and with family.

Winnunga Nimmityjah Aboriginal Health and Community Services (Winnunga Nimmityjah)

Winnunga Nimmityjah run clinical and social health services, however due to high demand, have stopped taking on new client memberships and have triaged priority to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples during this period.

Winnunga Nimmityjah are now a testing site for COVID-19 and need to be sure that staff on the frontline have all the protective clothing/equipment required to do this.

ACT Health Directorate is working closely with Winnunga Nimmityjah to provide additional supports to ensure continuation of services for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Canberrans.

During this time Winnunga Nimmityjah doctors are able to provide telephone consultation for some clients at greater risk, this includes current Winnunga clients who are:

  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander and 50 years or older
  • Non-Indigenous and 70 years or older
  • Being treated for chronic health condition or are immune compromised;
  • pregnant; or
  • a parent with a child under 12 months.

Please visit the WinnungaExternal Link website for more information.

Flu Vaccinations have been dispersed to Winnunga Nimmityjah to distribute to community members.

Immunisations should be maintained for younger members of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Community.

Gugan Gulwan Youth Aboriginal Corporation (Gugan Gulwan)

Gugan Gulwan provides case management, group and community programs and services to young Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children, young people and their families across the ACT region.

Due to social distancing requirements case management, community and group programs are being delivered in a limited face to face or online capacity.

Gugan Gulwan is a member of the Canberra Relief Network and continues to provided updated information and support to the local community through their programs and services, website, social media and community networks.

Please visit Gugan Gulwan websiteExternal Link or Gugan Gulwan Facebook pageExternal Link for further information.

Ngunnawal Bush Healing Farm (NBHF)

The NBHF Team are compiling and translating into culturally appropriate language, information on services and support available under the Health, Aged Care, Housing, Education, Justice, Cultural and Social-Emotional Wellbeing, Employment and Youth domains for distribution to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in the ACT/Queanbeyan and surrounding regions.

The NBHF has sourced a small number of hand hygiene kits and will distribute these to Winnunga Nimmityjah for provision to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander elders and other high risk patients.

Current and past NBHF clients are being contacted on a weekly basis by NBHF Community Liaison workers, either directly or via their nominated support person. The purpose of these outreach calls is to provide a general wellbeing check and to assist clients with making links to other services and online tools.

Development of a virtual NBHF Program in lieu of the standard NBHF Day Program is underway. The virtual program will cover a range of topics and online discussions such as:-

  • Alcohol and Other Drugs Prevention Education;
  • Supporting Connection to Culture;
  • Promoting Healthy Attitudes, Values and Behaviours;
  • Life Skills and Pre-Employment Development;
  • Setting and Working Towards Personal Goals;
  • Indigenous Horticultural, Agricultural and Environmental Knowledge Systems.

The NBHF is still accepting referrals with assessments carried out by phone or videoconferencing.

For all referral enquiries, please contact staff on (02) 6237 6700 or email at

Volunteering and Donations

We know that members of the Canberra Community are looking for ways help in the current COVID-19 pandemic.  Many people have reached out asking what they can do, where they can volunteer and donate.

Several Canberra not-for profit organisations are in desperate need for volunteers. As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic and Government recommendations on social distancing many regular volunteers, particularly those over 70 years of age, are no longer able undertake their volunteering roles. If you are able to volunteer your time there are many opportunities available through VolunteeringACTExternal Link website.

Canberran’s can donate directly to the Canberra Relief Network.  The Canberra Relief Network is a collaboration of community service organisations in the ACT supported by the ACT Government in response to the sudden and overwhelming demand for food and non-perishable household essentials item that is occurring and is expected to increase as a direct result of the COVID-19 Pandemic. Further information on the Network and how to donate is available on the Canberra Relief NetworkExternal Link website.

Hands Across Canberra also, provides information and links for donations to a range of Canberra charities and community organisations.  You can search for charities and opportunities to donate on the Hands Across CanberraExternal Link website.

Domestic and Family Violence

Domestic and family violence will not be tolerated at any time. 

Quick Exit

If you are in danger call 000.

If you are not in immediate danger but want to talk about your safety – call or email one of the services below.

In the ACT we are being asked to stay at home to avoid the spread of COVID – 19, but for some people their homes are not safe places and safety may need to be found elsewhere.

Organisations that can support you are still open and operating and can provide you with options to keep yourself and your family safe. But these services may be working differently – for example talking to you over the phone or via video conference – but services are still available. Services are working closely together so there is no wrong door to go through to ask for help.

There is also support available if you are using violence and want help to stop.

Help if you are affected by violence

ACT Family Violence Coordination Unit, ACT Policing

The Family Violence Coordination Unit remains open and responding to incidents of family violence. If you experience, see or hear family violence occurring call anytime:

  • Triple Zero (000) in an emergency or life-threatening situation
  • Police Operations on 131 444 if it is a non-emergency, but you require police assistance
  • Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 to report information

Open: 24 hours a day, 7 days a week

Domestic Violence Crisis Service (DVCS)

DVCS can provide support 24/7 to those in the community who are impacted by domestic and family violence, including those who are at risk of using violence. They can provide crisis intervention, legal advocacy, safety planning and referrals.

Phone: 6280 0900 
Open: 24 hours a day, 7 days a week

Canberra Rape Crisis Centre (CRCC)

CRCC counselling, crisis appointments and advocacy appointments are available on the phone. A 24-hour callout service to police and forensic services is open for those wishing to report sexual assault.

Phone: 6247 2525 
Open: 7am to 11pm, 7 days a week


Support is available via phone or web chat for those experiencing sexual, domestic and family violence

Phone: 1800 RESPECT (737 732) 
Web chat: 1800Respect - web chat External Link
Open: 24 hours a day, 7 days a week

Victim Support ACT at the ACT Human Rights Commission

Victim Support ACT is open and ready to support you. Please call us if you need to talk about your safety, access to counselling, immediate financial assistance in relation to a violent crime or are worried about the way you’ve been treated by police, prosecutors, the courts or corrections in connection to being a victim of crime.

Phone: 6205 2222 
Open: 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday

Women’s Legal Centre ACT

Women’s Legal Centre solicitors and social workers assist women who cannot afford a private lawyer and do not qualify for Legal Aid. If you are separated and are worried about how to manage your parenting arrangements during this time, or if you are contemplating separation and want to know your legal options to protect your safety or your kids’ safety, the Women’s Legal Centre can help.

Women’s Legal Centre can also help if you are having problems working with care and protection, or problems at work related to family or domestic violence or COVID-19.

The centre’s Aboriginal Women’s Program is also operating if you need a yarn or a hand to make sure you’ve got the support you need.

Phone: 6257 4377 
Email for referrals:
Open: 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday

Legal Aid ACT

The Legal Aid ACT Family Violence Unit is open and available by telephone to anyone who needs legal advice or assistance regarding family violence or related family law issues. This includes representation in the Magistrates Court (by phone) to obtain Family Violence Orders. Our Community Liaison team is also available for assistance with family violence related support, including our social worker, men’s worker, cultural liaison officers and Aboriginal support officers.

Phone: 1300 654 314 
Open: Monday to Friday, 8.30am to 4.30pm


OneLink continues to provide services over the phone to connect people with the services they need. When you get in contact with OneLink, an assessing officer will talk to you about your situation and what services might help. They will provide you with information about options and, where appropriate, will follow up to connect you to services.

Phone: 1800 176 468
Open: 8am to 6pm, Monday to Friday; 12.30pm to 5pm, Saturday and Sunday

Help if you are using violence or afraid you may use violence

Domestic Violence Crisis Service (DVCS)

DVCS can provide support 24/7 to those in the community who are impacted by domestic and family violence, including those who are at risk of using violence. They can provide crisis intervention, legal advocacy, safety planning and referrals.

Phone: 6280 0900 
Open: 24 hours a day, 7 days a week

Mensline Australia

Mensline national counselling service for men offers phone and online/video counselling for men affected by or considering using violence

Phone: 1300 78 99 78 
Online and video counselling: Mensline Australia - online counsellingExternal Link

Men’s Referral Service

The service provides telephone and online counselling, information and referrals for men who want to stop their use of violence.

Phone: 1300 766 491 
Open: 8am – 9pm, Monday to Friday; 9am - 5pm Saturday and Sunday

Online counselling: No to Violence - live chatExternal Link
Open: 8am – 9pm, Monday to Friday; 10am - 3pm Saturday, Sunday and public holidays

Women and Girls

Supporting women and girls in the ACT

The ACT Government acknowledges that groups will experience COVID-19 differently, and that women and girls may be facing unique pressures at this time.

Non-essential services for women and girls in the ACT are being delivered online or over the phone.

Women’s Information Service

The Women’s Information Service, a free information service for women and girls in the ACT is still available. The Women’s Information Service is designed to empower women to make informed choices, and we can put you in touch with local services and networks who offer assistance and advice across a range of areas. For now, this service will be available via phone and email, in keeping with social distancing requirements.

Phone: 6205 1075

Women’s Return to Work Grants Program

$1,000 individual Return to Work (RTW) Grants will continue to be administered to women who have been out of the workforce for an extended period. For now, this service will be available via phone and email, in keeping with social distancing requirements.

Website: Return to Work (RTW) Grants


Other services (mental health)

Women’s Health Service Counselling

The Women’s Health Service offers free services for women by women. Short, medium and long-term counselling on a range of issues is available.

Phone: 5124 1787

Website: Link


Lifeline is a national Charity providing all Australians experiencing a personal crisis with access to 24 hour crisis support and suicide prevention services. We’re committed to empowering Australians to be suicide-safe through connection, compassion and hope. Call 24/7 for crisis support and suicide prevention services.

Phone: 131114

Website: Link

Beyond Blue

We all have good days and bad days. Then there are those days when something isn't quite right, you've got something on your mind, or things just seem too much. Whatever it may be, sharing the load with someone else can really help. So no matter who you are, or how you're feeling, you can talk it through with Beyond Blue. Call 24/7 for advice, referral and support from a trained mental health professional.

Phone: 1300 22 4636

Website: Link

Next Step

Next Step is a free and confidential psychological support service run through Woden Community Service which helps you access the best type of mental health support to meet your individual needs. Next Step is delivered by specially trained coaches who are not counsellors or psychologists. Link

Phone: 6287 8066

Support for People with Disability

Canberra is an inclusive city and we want to ensure that our community continues to uphold these values during this time of crisis.

It is a challenging time for all in our community, particularly for our most vulnerable who may find these challenges difficult to navigate.

We want to ensure that people with disability in our community can still access essential services under current provisions.

Support for People with Disability

Food and Essential Supplies

Canberra Relief Network

Register for Emergency Food Relief:

Contact: 1800 431 133
The ACT Government is working together with community partners, including Uniting Care Kippax, Oz Harvest and The Foodbank to provide urgent food and essential items through a food pantry.

This new food pantry will ensure vulnerable people in our community can access supplies they need for themselves and their families during this challenging time.

If you are in isolation, if you are elderly, if you have a disability, if you have lost your job or you’re not sure how you will put food on the table. Register with us in our community pantry for the Canberra Relief Network hampers and collect your first hamper from either of our two pantries in Tuggeranong or Gungahlin.  You will need to order any future hampers through the Canberra Relief Network by phoning 1800 431 133 (Monday to Friday, 9.30am to 2.30pm) or by visiting their website please get in touch by calling 1800 43 11 33 or emailing

Visit website:

Home Medicines Services

The Home Medicines Service is available for people in home isolation and for vulnerable groups who wish to limit their potential exposure in the community. This service supports the use of home medicines delivery options available through pharmacies.

Visit website:

MARSS Emergency Relief

MARSS delivers Emergency Relief Funding (ERF) from the Commonwealth by providing practical help in the form of food hampers, vouchers for groceries and other household items and emergency help with bills. Our caseworkers take a holistic approach to helping people in emotional or financial distress. They can arrange for clients to pick up hampers from our Civic office, or organise home delivery if a client is unable to come in.

Under this program MARSS can:

  • provide supermarket and shop vouchers
  • help pay bills or utilities for clients in financial distress
  • provide bus tickets
  • negotiate payment plans
  • refer clients for internal or external assistance (welfare, housing and tenancy, employment, education, legal, domestic violence, counselling, physical and mental health)
  • help with any other issues

The experience we have had in the last few weeks indicates that there will be many members of the migrant and refugee community and other vulnerable groups struggling to pay living costs and bills, or to source clothing or household items. Any migrants, refugees, humanitarian entrants and asylum seekers needing emergency relief of this kind can be referred to MARSS by calling the MARSS Office on (02) 6248 8577.

Free Meals, Emergency Relief, Food Pantries Guide

VolunteeringACT’s Community Info Hub provides a guide, updated fortnightly, with information on free meals, emergency relief and food pantries, as well as laundry and showers, short stay and low-cost accommodation.

Visit website:

Gambling Support

We’ve all been doing things differently since #COVID19. Perhaps you, or someone you care about, are gambling differently or more often? At a time when stress and anxiety may already be a challenge, be sure to reach out for advice and support. Free and confidential support is available 24/7 from Gambling Help Online including how to avoid the dangers of unregulated online gambling. The Gambling Counselling and Support Service also offers free 24/7 support online and over the phone at 1800 858 858

Talking about gambling harm helps, and there are different ways to start the conversation. For advice and support visit our Don’t Play it Down page

Information is available for young people experiencing gambling harm on the At Odds website.

Being aware of the risks associated with different forms of gambling, can help us make informed decisions and choices. Some online gaming or betting services are illegal and aren’t registered to operate in Australia – you can find out more on the ACMA website.

Further information:

Alcohol and Drug Services

Alcohol and Drug Services

Canberra Health Services offers information, advice, referral, intake, assessment and support twenty-four hours a day.

We offer services for individuals, their family and friends, general practitioners, other health professionals, and business and community groups.

One phone call is all it takes - (02) 5124 9977

All referrals and initial contact with Canberra Health Services' Alcohol and Other Drugs Services can be made by calling the 24 Hour Helpline - 5124 9977.

The 24 hour Helpline is staffed by professional workers from our Alcohol and Drug Program, and provides:

  • information on alcohol and other drug and associated issues;
  • advice on assisting and managing people who may have alcohol and other drug issues; and
  • support to people affected directly or indirectly by alcohol and drug use.

Who can use this service?

All residents of the ACT who think they, or a family member or friend may have an alcohol or drug problem.

The Health Directorate also offers advice and information to general practitioners, other health professionals, and business and community groups.

Further information:

Jobs for Canberrans

Delivering Jobs

The ACT Government is working to ensure the economic recovery of the ACT and surrounding regions through a comprehensive economic response to the COVID 19 pandemic.

To do this, we need to work together with Canberrans to create job opportunities for those that need it and support local businesses through this difficult time.

The Jobs for Canberrans Fund was established in April 2020 to provide employment opportunities for people in the casual or semi-skilled workforce who lost their jobs or have been significantly impacted due to COVID-19.

In June, the Fund was expanded to offer additional opportunities for job seekers bringing the number of people employed through the Fund to over 450 people

Jobs have been made available for people who had relied on casual work and were not eligible for the Australian Government’s wage subsidy scheme or other support.

Roles have minimal pre-requisites and can be undertaken in a manner that is compliant with public health directions.

The ACT Government will continue to work with businesses, employee representatives and community services organisations to target those people most in need.


To be eligible to apply for roles, people must have lost their job, or have been significantly impacted as a result of COVID-19.

Roles will be made available to people most in need. Highest priority will be given to people ineligible for any Australian Government support.

Applicants will be stepped through eligibility criteria in more detail when they register.

A high number of registrations have been received since the program was announced. Registration is still open, so please sign up if you are eligible.

We will be working hard to process applications over the coming days and weeks.

If you have already registered, you will continue to receive notifications as new jobs become available.

Further information and sign up:

Community Info Hub

Telephone: 6248 7988
Do you want to find a support or interest group? Speak to the right people about housing, aged care or childcare? Are you a community services worker, needing specific information to help assist a client? The Community Info Hub can link you to the right services.

Whether you are a student, older person, public servant, raising a family, living with a disability, or from a culturally or linguistically diverse background, we put you in touch with the services you are looking for. The Community Info Hub is a one stop shop for all your community information needs. Ask us anything!

The Community Info Hub’s services are available on the CIH website and via& the Community Info Line 6248 7988. The Community Info Hub shopfront, located in the Griffin Centre at 20 Genge Street, is temporarily closed due to the COVID-19 public health emergency.

Visit website:

Community Directory

The Community Info Hub’s Community Directory can link you with services to support your needs, groups to connect with other people and activities to participate in your local community. With over 3,000 listings, it provides information on a wide range of topics.

From interest groups, sporting clubs and cultural communities to support groups, health services and welfare providers, there is something for everyone.

Visit website:

Centres and Sites

Further information on changes to access and services at Community Services Directorate's centres and sites will be added when available.

Supporting Public Housing Tenants

Supporting Public Housing Tenants

Housing ACT is contacting eligible households to update their details to ensure the one-off $250 payment can be made as soon as possible.

To support timely payment, eligible households can contact Housing ACT on 6207 1345, Monday to Friday between 8:30am – 5pm AEST to update their details.

More information on the payment can be found on the ACT Government’s COVID-19 website.

For your safety and the wellbeing of our staff please call or email instead of coming into the Central Access Point (Housing ACT shopfront) in Belconnen.

For tenancy related matters, there are a number of ways you can provide information or get in touch with us:

  • To lodge a housing application or provide additional information for your application please phone 6207 1150 or email
  • To lodge a rental rebate or speak directly with your Housing Manager please email or phone:
    • 6205 4681 (Intake and Stabilisation)
    • 6207 9166 (Southern Region)
    • 6207 1345 (Northern Region)
    • 6207 1395 (Intensive Region)
  • For all maintenance and property issues, please phone Programmed on 6207 1500 or email Programmed on
  • To lodge a complaint please phone 6207 1515 or email us at
  • For general enquiries and topics not listed above, please phone 133 427 or email

More information on access to Housing ACT


Further information on cancelled and/or postponed events across the Community Services Directorate will be added when available.

  • Women's Return to Work SPARK northside workshop (31 March 2020)
  • Youth Assembly (3 April 2020)
  • Citizenship Ceremony (6 April 2020)
  • Citizenship Ceremony (4 May 2020)

The next election for the ACT Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Elected Body (ATSIEB) will be held in NAIDOC Week in July 2021. For details go to the media releaseExternal Link