Our Mental Health Service
Boab Health’s Mental Health service provides free, confidential, and safe mental health support and counselling services for people living in the Kimberley region. Our team of qualified and caring mental health professionals offer a range of mental health support services based on your individual needs. We work in partnership with your GP to ensure we are adopting a holistic approach to your health and wellbeing. Our mental health team supports individuals experiencing a range of mental health concerns such as psychological distress, low mood, stress, depression, and anxiety. We offer short-term, evidence-based psychological supports to help improve your overall feeling of well-being. We also offer a care coordination support program for people experiencing complex or severe mental health issues. You can download our mental health brochure here.
Our Mental Health service is for individuals who can be safely managed in the primary care setting and is not suitable to those currently in crisis or requiring urgent assistance.
We provide services in Balgo, Bidyadanga, Broome, Dampier Peninsula communities, Derby, Fitzroy Crossing, Halls Creek, Kalumburu, Kununurra, Warmun, Wyndham, and some communities in the Fitzroy Valley.
Mental Health Services Available Include:
> Low Intensity Psychological Intervention (LIPI)
Our LIPI service is designed to offer brief, evidence-based interventions for people experiencing or at risk of mild mental health conditions, that can be easily accessed with or without a referral from a health professional.
If you are experiencing any of the below, this service may be of help to you:
- Feeling anxious or experiencing panic attacks
- Low mood, sadness
- Feeling hopeless or worthless
- Finding it difficult to do everyday things because of how you feel
- Worrying more than usual
- Not being able to relax because of your thoughts or feelings
- Avoiding doing things because they make you feel anxious
Interventions focus on the here and now, offering support, education and skill development to help improve your mental wellbeing and daily functioning. This might include learning self-help techniques such as anxiety and mood management, relaxation, problem solving and mindfulness.
Our LIPI service can be delivered in individual sessions, or through one of our group programs. We accept self-referrals, please contact us to discuss your needs.
> Psychological Therapy
This service provides short-term, structured psychological therapy/counselling for people with a diagnosable mental health condition, that may be experiencing moderate levels of psychological distress.
It is also available for people who have attempted suicide or self-harm or may be experiencing thoughts of suicide/self-harm and are ready to begin a process of healing.
Our team of mental health professionals utilise a range of evidence-based therapeutic approaches matched to an individual’s need, to achieve the best clinical outcome.
A referral from a GP, Psychiatrist or Paediatrician is required to access this service.
Referrals from other health professionals will also be considered, pending endorsement by the individual’s GP. Please call us to discuss.
> Clinical Care Coordination
Our clinical care coordination program supports people with severe mental illness. We assist GPs with case management support for people experiencing complex mental illness by providing care coordination and support in the primary care setting. A referral from a GP, Psychiatrist or Paediatrician is required to access this service.
> Group programs and courses
Our group programs and courses differ from group therapy. During these programs, we aim to empower you with knowledge, tools, and practical skills to help improve your mental wellbeing. Your confidentiality is assured, we won’t ask you to talk about your personal issues in our group programs.
Evidence suggests group programs can be just as effective and sometimes more effective than individual counselling. Group programs can help people feel less alone and provide an opportunity to hear from others experiencing similar issues.
> Child and youth services
We offer face-to-face child services in Broome and Kununurra. For other locations, we may be able to offer telephone or other support. Contact us for more information.
Our child mental health service provides individual counselling to children aged 0-12 years and their parent(s) and/or carers. We help children and families with common concerns such as:
- Anxiety and depression
- Sleep problems
- Social and emotional issues
- Attachment difficulties
- Emotional and behavioural dysregulation
- Grief, loss, and trauma
Our child counselling services utilise age-appropriate evidence-based child-specific interventions such as play therapy, child-centred parenting support, cognitive behavioural therapy, and mindfulness. We provide a developmentally appropriate and natural way for children to communicate and express feelings and experiences in a safe and supportive environment. For more information download our child mental health service brochure.
> Youth Enhanced Service – Kununurra
Boab’s Kununurra-based Youth Enhanced Service provides clinical mental health services and family support for young people aged 12 to 18 years of age. This service supports young people (and their family/carers) experiencing, or at risk of developing, complex or severe mental health issues who would benefit from intensive support. To be eligible for this service the young person must be enrolled at a school in Kununurra. As part of our clinical approach, we provide specialist mental health counselling, community support, care coordination and tailored therapeutic groups. This is a flexible service to provide an engaging and positive experience for young people.
> A Better Life (ABLe) Program – Wyndham
The ABLe program aims to improve the independence, participation and long-term lifetime wellbeing of people living in Wyndham who are affected by mental health issues, including drug and alcohol misuse or problems with gambling. This program includes building resilience and supporting participants to manage the impacts of their mental health issues sustainably. This program is open to people living in Wyndham who are aged 16 to 65 years.
We do not require a GP referral for our ABLe program.
How to Access our Services?
We require a referral from your GP or other health professional* to access the majority of our mental health counselling services. Referral forms are available here.
*We accept referrals from remote areas and child and maternal nurses, midwives, paediatricians, psychiatrists, and Kimberley Mental Health and Drug Services and Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service professionals.
There are some counselling and group programs where you can self-refer or be referred to by a family member or another service. Contact our friendly team, who will be happy to talk to you about our specific program referral requirements.
More information for health professionals about how to refer to our services (including our eligibility criteria) is available here.
What to Expect after a Referral is made?
Once we receive your referral, we will contact you directly to undertake an initial assessment. During this assessment, we talk with you to gain an understanding of your current situation, challenges, and goals.
From there, we will recommend a treatment plan. The type of support we offer will depend on your individual circumstances, and the level of support required. We may offer you a place at one of our group programs or short-term counselling.
During your initial assessment, we may also provide you with resources and other support options. We will also inform you of approximate wait times to access our counselling and group programs.
Throughout your involvement with our service, and with your consent, we will keep your GP updated on your treatment, progress, and any further recommendations we may make.
We offer free, government-funded counselling for people living in the Kimberley who cannot access private mental health services. Our services are often in high demand and wait times for appointments can vary depending on your location and service requirements.
If you can pay for mental health support, we ask you to consider seeking a referral to a private psychologist in the first instance. Depending on your level of cover, some private health insurers cover psychological services.
What can you expect from a counselling session?
Our mental health team is staffed by qualified and committed professionals. Services we provide include:
- Psychological counselling and support
- Goal setting and problem-solving
- Communication skills
- Self-help strategies
- Referrals or links to other relevant services
- Individual risk and safety assessment, management and planning for self-harm and suicidal ideation
Services we do not provide!
- Crisis response (contact Kimberley Mental Health and Drug Service – KMHDS)
- Services for people experiencing acute mental illness (e.g. experiencing mania or psychosis) (contact KMHDS)
- Counselling for complex post-traumatic stress disorder, personality disorders, dementia, delirium, or intellectual disability.
- Case management as the primary service (contact KMHDS)
- Outreach services (except in communities) (contact KMHDS)
- Court reports, other medico-legal reports (e.g. for workers compensation), or court-mandated counselling
- Cognitive, developmental, learning disability, or neuro-psychology assessments
- Relationship or couples counselling or mediation (try Anglicare or Relationships Australia)
- Long-term/ongoing therapy
While you wait for your appointment.
If your symptoms worsen, or if you have any urgent concerns, contact your regular health service. Otherwise, you may contact Boab Health Services and ask to speak to a mental health professional, who can assist you in accessing the most appropriate support for you. In an emergency, always present to your local hospital or remote clinic or contact the 24-hour telephone supports below.
Contact us if you would like to know more about any of our services or programs.
In an emergency!
Always call 000 in an emergency or go immediately to your local hospital or remote health clinic.
There is always someone available to listen. If you, or someone you know, requires urgent assistance call: