Family stories

Family experiences with Family Wellbeing Services

Family Wellbeing Services client (2mins) without authorisation

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“I have learnt to budget, I was bad at spending, wasting money. When I can, I go to women’s group, come to Family Wellbeing Services, or go to the community centre and talk to someone. It helps.”

“My support worker encourages me, gives me motivation to move forward, she is supportive, I don’t feel judged.”

“I had all these loose threads in my head, now I have a plan.”

“Counselling really helped me, it gives me things to think about and I can realise the consequences of my actions.”

“Family Wellbeing Services set good foundations for the future and moving forward in life. I am improving myself and would like to study and get a good job to look after my family.”

Family Wellbeing Services have helped more than 28,000 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander families. Here are some of their stories. Names have been changed to protect their privacy.

  • Gaining confidence in her parenting – Kelly's story 

    Kelly is a mother of 2 boys aged 8 and 11 living in a rural town. The school guidance officer thought Family Wellbeing Services could help Kelly manage and provide for her kids and the whole family is happier and healthier thanks to their support.

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  • I know how to make great choices and decisions – Jenny's story 

    Single mum of 4 kids Jenny was forced to move to escape domestic violence and the family needed help to get their lives back on track. That's where Family Wellbeing Services stepped in.

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  • It is good to yarn with someone outside your family – Kelvin's story

    Kelvin is a single dad with 2 kids aged 5 and 8. When he first contacted Family Wellbeing Services, he was hoping they could help him show the courts he could provide his kids with a good home, but they were able to offer him a lot more support. Life is getting better for Kelvin and his kids.

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  • They respect my choices and privacy – Sarah's story 

    Dealing with domestic violence and control and struggling to have enough money for food, Sarah reached out to Family Wellbeing Services. Thanks to their quick response, her family is safer and happier.

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  • They got me a bike so I can get out and cool down – Henry and Shelley’s story

    Henry is a 24-year-old Koori man with a strong cultural background and goals of passing lore onto the next generation. He met Shelly, a Murri woman aged 34, they fell in love and she fell pregnant. Due to her alcoholic past, Shelly had anxiety throughout her pregnancy, while Henry had trouble with his anger. Both went to Family Wellbeing Services for help.

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  • Reconnecting after family separation – Jess's story 

    Jess had been separated from her kids for more than 5 years by their father. When they were no longer able to live with their father, the children asked Child Safety to contact their mum. Child Safety referred Jess to Family Wellbeing Services for support so she could navigate the system and rebuild her relationship with her kids.

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  • Accepting help for the first time makes a big difference – Lisa's story 

    Lisa had declined all support before Family Wellbeing Services reached out. Weekly visits from a Family Wellbeing Services worker and connections to health clinics, women's groups and social health teams has helped the family.

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  • Overcoming homesickness and a language barrier – Alex's story 

    Moving to a new community left Alex feeling alone and unsupported. Financial difficulties meant the family was unable to attend sorry business and there was a lot of conflict in the home. Contacting Family Wellbeing Services helped turn things around for the family.

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  • Overcoming grief and addiction to be reunited with her kids – Nicole's story 

    Nicole is a mum of 5 young kids who was living with and caring for her ill father. Having struggled with alcohol and drug addiction, her 2 oldest children were living with other family members. The death of her father led her to relapse but thanks to Family Wellbeing Services, Nicole got the support she needed and now the family is reunited.

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  • I feel supported – Sherry's story 

    Sherry is a 24-year-old mother with 4 young children. She had a difficult childhood, with a lot of domestic violence. Her parents were addicted to alcohol and other drugs. Thanks to Family Wellbeing Services, Sherry says, "I can now reach out to people, feel supported and know that I am not on my own."

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  • I am so grateful – Fiona's story 

    Fiona and her teenage son had to flee domestic violence and were placed in a refuge where they experienced a lot of trauma. Fiona found them somewhere to live but it was a struggle to pay rent, bills and put food on the table. Visiting Family Wellbeing Services has helped them.

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  • Reuniting Larnie and her kids – Larnie's story 

    Larnie has trouble managing day-to-day tasks. She finds it hard to trust people but working with a supportive and non-judgemental worker at Family Wellbeing Services has helped her build a connection with her kids. Larnie hopes she can give them a different life to hers.

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  • Finding new ways to manage – Desleigh's story

    Desleigh is a 33-year-old married mother of 7 living in a remote community. Desleigh has been struggling to feed her 4 children because of her gambling problem. A friend encouraged her to go to her local Family Wellbeing Services and Desleigh now has support with raising her children and a plan in place to get out of debt.

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  • Rebuilding Lara's relationship with her kids – Lara's story 

    Lara is a 24-year-old Aboriginal woman living with her partner, James. She has 3 young children aged 6, 4, and 10 months. Anger issues, drug use and domestic violence meant her children were unable to stay safe at home, so they are in Lara's mum's care. She is working with Family Wellbeing Services to build a relationship with her kids.

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