Roadmaps mobile counselling will support rural people with substance abuse

Roadmaps launch: Andrew Harvey, Gargi Ganguly, Craig Leonard, Kevin Mackay, Mark Coulton, Sue Williamson, Ed Zarnow, Caitlin Maginnis and Maree Keen. Photo: BELINDA SOOLE
Roadmaps launch: Andrew Harvey, Gargi Ganguly, Craig Leonard, Kevin Mackay, Mark Coulton, Sue Williamson, Ed Zarnow, Caitlin Maginnis and Maree Keen. Photo: BELINDA SOOLE

A new program has been launched to stop people from communities in Western NSW missing out on drug and alcohol support services because they require travelling to other towns.  

The Roadmaps program has helped a lot. It has opened my eyes – and made everything a lot easier.

Roadmaps participant

The new Roadmaps mobile counselling service, officially launched in Dubbo on Thursday, aims to provide people the support they need within their community.

The Roadmaps program is a free service, operated by Lyndon Dubbo Outreach, as part of the not-for-profit Lives Lived Well organisation. The program is is funded by the Western NSW Public Health Network (PHN) and the Australian Federal Government. 

Roadmaps provides an intensive rehabilitation program over two days a week, for six weeks. The program involves individual and group counselling sessions, and links participants with support services in their community. 

Roadmaps will service Gilgandra, Nynagan, Warren and Wellington.

“Problems with drugs and alcohol affect all communities. The need in the smaller communities is just as high in the larger regional towns and city areas,” Lives Lived Well director of operations Ed Zarnow said.

“Sometimes I think the smaller rural communities get forgotten...They miss out on some of the services available,” Mr Zarnow said.

Federal Member for Parkes, Mark Coulton officially launched the program.

“We know that people do well when they receive support in their own community, with family and friends close by,” he said.

Public Health Network CEO Mr Andrew Harvey said the program offers the “right care, at the right place at the right time.”  

A Roadmaps participant, who didn’t wish to be named said  he ‘wanted to change’, when asked why he joined the program. 

“I wanted to make my life better than what it is.” 

The launch marked the fourth week of the program and one participant said they didn’t feel six weeks was long enough, as ‘we’re only just starting to get better’. He wanted to ensure he had the skills and support to be successful after the program. 

Roadmaps provides a follow up appointment at two weeks and four weeks after the program. Another round will begin before Christmas this year. Participants have been invited to be mentors in the Gilgandra and Wellington programs. 

To enquire about Roadmaps call 0429 927 714 or email DubboOutreach@liveslivedwell.org.au.