The Support Act Wellbeing Helpline is a free, confidential phone counselling service, available to anyone who works in Australian music or the arts.
The service is accessible 24 hours a day, 365 days per year by calling 1800 959 500 within Australia. You can also email us from anywhere in the world using the form below and a counsellor will call you back (or set up a time to contact you).
If you are calling to speak to a counsellor after hours, please state that you wish to speak to someone now, otherwise arrangements will be made for you to be contacted the next business day to arrange an appointment.
Remember: if you or someone you care about is in crisis or at immediate risk, dial 000.
ABOUT THE HELPLINE
The Support Act Wellbeing Helpline is delivered in partnership with AccessEAP, a leading not-for-profit Employee Assistance Program provider with close to 30 years experience in mental health and workplace wellbeing. Funding support is provided by the Australian Government through the Office for the Arts and The Tony Foundation.
The Helpline is staffed by professional counsellors who understand the challenges of working in music and the arts. They offer expertise in all areas related to mental health (e.g. depression, anxiety, addiction, suicidal feelings) as well as issues which can be mental health related (such as loneliness, relationship breakdown, financial worries, illness and workplace conflict).
The Helpline includes four dedicated support lines:
LGBTQI+ Support Line (option 2) staffed by counsellors and professionals who have completed ACON Pride Inclusion training for LGBTIQ+ and gender diverse members of the industry.
First Nations Support Line (option 3) staffed by Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander clinicians or those with cultural awareness training who understand the challenges you may face. Learn more.
Manager Support Hotline (option 4), a consultative service for artist managers, line managers and team leaders. Learn more.
Sexual Health and Safety Support Line (option 5) providing counselling support in relation to sexual harassment and any form of sexual abuse.
NATIONAL RELAY SERVICE
If you are deaf and/or find it hard hearing or speaking with people who use a phone, the National Relay Service (NRS) can help you. Find out more here or use the numbers below:
Voice Relay number
1300 555 727 (and then add 1800 959 500)
133 677 (and then add 1800 959 500)
SMS relay number
0423 677 767 (and then add 1800 959 500)
CALLING FROM OVERSEAS
To access the Wellbeing Helpline from overseas, call +61 (02) 8247 9111.
This will take you through to our provider Access EAP directly, so you will not be given the same menu options as calling the Helpline, however the service is the same.
You can also call any of these toll-free numbers while overseas or email email@example.com and someone will respond to you in the next business day.
We have developed a range of print and digital resources for the Support Act Wellbeing Helpline (SAWH). These are freely available for everyone, individuals and organisations, to download and display, at work, home, local venues, rehearsal spaces, on 12 seaters, flight cases and amps. Help us share the number: 1800 959 500.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
The Wellbeing Helpline is accessible 24/7 by calling 1800 959 500 within Australia. You can also seek counselling via email from anywhere in the world. Please note that unless it’s an emergency, appointment with counsellors will be scheduled for between 8am – 6pm, Monday – Friday. Appointments can be by phone or video conference.
The Wellbeing Helpline is available to anyone who works in the Australian creative industries, including performing arts, music, film and television, and visual arts. You do not have to be currently working to call the Helpline.
The Wellbeing Helpline is particularly targeted at those who may not have access to an EAP. The Wellbeing Helpline does not replace an organisational EAP or ongoing professional clinical support. It is strongly recommended that organisations and companies investigate implementing their own EAP. If you do not have access to an EAP, the Wellbeing Helpline is for you.
The Wellbeing Helpline is staffed by experienced clinicians from AccessEAP. All clinical professionals have an average of more than 15 years’ experience. Clinicians are predominantly psychologists, with some specialist social workers and counsellors. All hold full registration and membership with the appropriate accreditation bodies in Australia.
Support Act and our colleagues at the Arts Wellbeing Collective work closely with the clinicians to ensure they have an understanding of the challenges faced by music and performing arts workers, and many of the clinicians have direct experience working in the industry. However, you may still need to explain some aspects of your job. We immensely appreciate your patience if the clinicians are not across every aspect of your work environment.
Yes. You can call for support, counselling or coaching on any aspect of your mental health and wellbeing. There is diverse experience among the clinicians and specialist support is available for people from:
- Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities
- Culturally and linguistically diverse communities
- LGBTQI+ communities
And for people experiencing
- Harm from gambling, alcohol and other drugs
- Financial and legal issues
- Relationship issues
- Family violence
- Sexual harassment
If you would like to speak with a clinician of a particular age, gender, religion, race, sexuality, political bias or any other diverse background or experience, please let the team know when you call.
The clinicians are experienced utilising the National Relay Service – 1800 555 660 or visit relayservice.com.au
You can also submit an online booking at supportact.org.au/wellbeinghelpline and request an Auslan or Deaf / Blind Tactile interpreter, or request to connect with a clinician who signs.
The Wellbeing Helpline is designed for short-term support. Many people report feeling relieved and ‘helped’ after just one conversation! If you need ongoing support, the clinician will assist you with this.
You will be asked your name and a brief description of which part of the creative industries you work for, e.g. music, visual arts, performing arts etc. Some personal details are required for duty of care purposes. You do not need to disclose anything that you are uncomfortable sharing.
Yes. Absolute confidentiality is assured, and is in fact mandatory for all clinicians, except where required by law. The clinicians are extremely aware of the importance of confidentiality, and sensitive to both legal and ethical confidentiality requirements.
Support Act receives reporting of pure statistical data that shows how many people accessed the Wellbeing Helpline, and high-level data about themes. No names or personal details are shared in this reporting.
The clinicians staffing the Wellbeing Helpline care about you as a person. There is no presumption or judgement on your role, background, status or experience – they care about the issues that you experience as a human.
The Wellbeing Helpline is currently available via phone or video conference.
Yes. You will be asked when you call whether you’d prefer to speak to someone then or make an appointment for a more suitable time.
Yes. No matter what it is – maybe you need advice on managing isolation during the COVID-19 closure period, or how to navigate the ups and downs of work, tips for post-show wind down, strategies for maximising time with family or anything else – big or small, if you feel you could benefit from a conversation with a qualified mental health professional, the Wellbeing Helpline is for you.
That’s ok – this is a great starting place! The clinicians can help point you in the right direction if the Wellbeing Helpline is not what you need right now.
Yes. Sometimes it takes a while for you to find a connection with a clinician who ‘gets’ you and your experiences, preferences and style. That’s fine and totally normal – we strongly encourage you to keep reaching out until you find someone who feels like a good fit for you.
Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org and we will respond asap.
MENTAL HEALTH RESOURCES
In addition to the Wellbeing Helpline, Support Act develops and implements a range of life-saving mental health prevention, education and training programs. We also curate a wealth of evidence-based mental health resources, specifically for those who work in music.