Culturally safe alcohol and other drugs support for the community of Meekatharra and surrounds

People living in rural and remote parts of the Midwest and Goldfields now have access to culturally safe alcohol and other drug outreach services thanks to new funding to provide additional staff and services in regional WA.

A drug and alcohol clinician has joined the team at Mission Australia in Meekatharra to provide the outreach service for people living in Meekatharra, Cue and Mt Magnet.

The service supports individuals and their families who are experiencing issues associated with alcohol and other drug use through case management and support to access the right treatment options.

Counselling, group work, and community education and awareness support is also available.

WA Primary Health Alliance Regional Manager Amy Perry said alcohol and other drugs were a health and social issue that impacted the whole community in a multitude of ways.

“This funding has given us the opportunity to increase the capacity of existing alcohol and other drug programs and services in regional and remote areas, including Meekatharra, allowing them to work with individuals, families and the community to reduce the impact of alcohol and drug use,” she said.

The Alcohol and Other Drug Outreach Service will work closely with a number of other Mission Australia services relating to family violence, school attendance, family support, public tenancy, emergency relief and another WA Primary Health Alliance funded service, the Meekatharra Mental Health Support Service.

Federal Member for Durack Melissa Price said alcohol and other drugs could have a serious impact on the community.

“Ensuring people living in regional and remote communities have access to culturally safe support remains a priority for our Government,” she said.

“Through providing additional staff and services in regional WA, we will help to maximise access to, and the effectiveness of, drug and alcohol support services.”

As part of the funding, WA Primary Health Alliance has also contracted:

  • Mission Australia to provide an AOD service in Onslow, which will complement an existing service it currently runs in other areas of the Pilbara; and
  • Hope Community Services to extend services it currently provides in Laverton out to Mount Margaret, as well as other remote towns.

Mission Australia Area Manager Midwest Gascoyne Dr Paul Royce said due to having an active presence in the area and strong referral pathways the organisation has been able to hit the ground running.

“These services are culturally safe and will help to reduce harm and support behaviour change before the use of alcohol and other drugs becomes entrenched or problematic,” he said.

Mission Australia’s Alcohol and other Drug Outreach Service – Meekatharra  is open Monday to Friday 8.30am to 4.30pm. Contact 08 9956 5100 for more information.

This activity has been made possible through funding provided by the Australian Government under the PHN Program.