Media Release by The Hon Jenny Macklin MP

Lifeline for distressed Gosnells parents

Parents struggling to cope with the birth or death of a child will retain access to a local lifeline, thanks to a $140,000 Australian Government boost for the Gosnells Women’s Health Service.

The Minister for Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs, Jenny Macklin, said the Australian Government would continue to fund the not-for-profit organisation’s Building Stronger Families Project, providing critical support for distressed families for a further 12 months.

“Supported through the Government’s Local Answers initiative, Gosnells Women’s Health Service assists up to 2,850 people through individual, couple and group relationship counselling and educational sessions,” Ms Macklin said.

“The service provides invaluable practical help to people in the Gosnells area to improve parenting skills, build social networks and enhance family relationships.”

The service increases parenting abilities by strengthening families including the vital bonds between parents and children and between couples.

These relationships can change significantly with the birth or death of a child, placing incredible strain on families.

The service also has a resource library – stocked with brochures, books and DVDs – and information on other professional support services for new parents.

The health service provides parents with counselling and relationship skills sessions for post-natal singles and couples.

The Member for Hasluck, Sharryn Jackson, said the Women’s Health Service has a strong track record of assisting mothers who have difficulties with the birth of their children.

“Through the Women’s Walk and Talk group, mothers have reported feeling empowered through talking with other women and staff about ensuing the birth of their child is a positive experience,” Ms Jackson said.

The Australian Government is proud to support such initiatives which improve family life.