Dubbo is now officially home to its own Lifeline centre which opened its doors to the public for the first time on Monday.
The official opening comes at a good time following a statement from Lifeline Central West CEO Stephanie Robinson which stating there was a major upsurge in calls.
"Three weeks ago we took the largest number of calls in Lifeline's 57-year-history," Mrs Robinson said.
"The Dubbo-based team will serve a vast area, including Wellington, Narromine, Mendooran, Coonabarabran, Coonamble, Walgett, Bourke and Lightning Ridge.
"Our new centre will be a safe space for people to have group or one-on-one counselling sessions and will also serve as a base for our trained volunteers to provide community outreach."
The new centre will also be the base for the Rapid Community Support Program (Rapid) - an outreach program which goes directly to towns hit by significant events such as drought and bushfire to provide counselling and support within their own community.
A $500,000 boost from the NSW Government will enable it to continue operations as part of an additional $6 million investment provided to Lifeline in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Dubbo-based centre became reality after funding of more than $600,000 from the NSW Government to provide people living across the states Central West with better access to mental health support.
Minister for Mental Health Bronnie Taylor was given the honour of opening the centre on the day.
"We want people living in the Central West to be able to access timely support from counsellors who understand their local community and the pressures they might be under," Mrs Taylor said.
"As well as establishing a dedicated Lifeline presence in Dubbo, the funding will also allow Lifeline Central West to triple the number of crisis telephone calls answered in Dubbo and its surrounds."
- Do you have something to say? We welcome your letters which may run in print and online.