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Australian Indigenous HealthBulletin

Counselling and wellbeing program



The Royal Flying Doctor Service of Queensland (Qld) offers a Counselling and wellbeing program based in Cairns. This program was first implemented in 1996, and has since grown to include a team of health workers and professionals. The program delivers training, education, and mental health promotion services to primary health care clinics and other support services. It also aims to develop a culturally competent workforce that includes Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander professionals.

The program is now available in 13 locations in the Cape York area of Qld, including remote communities. Members of the Counselling and wellbeing program team visit remote locations on a fortnightly basis, and use telephone and video-conferencing support to provide consultation and advice. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community capacity building and workforce development are also a part of the program, to help build on existing community strengths and create social support networks for community members 'at risk' - for example, of mental health issues, self-harm, alcohol or other drug use, or coming into contact with the justice system.

Abstract adapted from Royal Flying Doctor Service


Cairns Base
Royal Flying Doctor Street
General Aviation Cairns Airport
Aeroglen Qld 4870
Ph: (07) 4040 0444
Ph: (07) 4040 0500 (24 hour emergency contact)
Fax: (07) 4040 0199

Related publications

Osborne B (2007)

Welfare reform, courts and healing: restoring the justice? The RFDS Counselling and Wellbeing program.

Paper presented at the National Indigenous Justice CEO Forum. 21-22 November 2007, Brisbane


Last updated: 17 August 2015
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