Community Service MYTHS Revealed
There are many myths in the community regarding the types of people who require our assistance.
MYTH: Elderly people love their own company and don’t like to go out.
Many older people either lose the ability to go out alone through a disability or frailty, or lose their confidence to go out alone because of a bad experience they may have had. If you would like to find out more, contact Gail Reid on 5335 3500 or click here to go to our Aged & disAbility pages.
MYTH: All homeless people are older alcoholic males who sleep on park benches.
Homelessness affects people of all ages and gender and can happen to all types of people. A person who does not have access to safe, secure, adequate housing is considered to be homeless in Australia. If a person is living in emergency accommodation, or are couch surfing (staying at many different peoples couches for short periods of time) they are considered homeless. For more information regarding homelessness go to Homelessness Australia.
MYTH: People are homeless because it’s their fault.
Rent rises, rental property shortages, public housing waiting lists are just some of the reasons people become homeless. Other reasons for homelessness include women escaping from domestic violence, people with mental health problems, economic stress and people with drug and/or alcohol problems. If you or someone you know has housing difficulties, contact our Housing program.
MYTH: People who require Emergency Relief aid all receive Centrelink payments.
UnitingCare Ballarat regularly assists low income working families who are having financial difficulties because of mortgage or rent rises, unexpected expenses, multiple bills turning up at once and/or trying to pay for children’s uniforms and books at the beginning of the school year. For information regarding our Welfare programs click here.
MYTH: Calls to Lifeline are from people who are thinking about committing suicide.
People call Lifeline for many reasons including crisis support, mental health issues, loneliness, isolation and anxiety. If you are having any of these difficulties please call Lifeline on 13 11 14.
MYTH: Alcoholics are always derelicts.
Most people with alcohol-related issues are every-day people who work, have families and friends, which can often make the problem a hidden issue and difficult to deal with.
MYTH: Marijuana is harmless and not as ‘hardcore’ as other drugs.
Marijuana can’t directly kill you – but smoking it is not risk-free. Regular marijuana use has been shown to be associated with long-term problems, including poor academic performance, memory loss and lung cancer. Smoking marijuana can lead to panic attacks, depression and other mental health problems and increased anxiety. If you or someone you know has a problem with alcohol or other drugs, contact UnitingCare Ballarat’s Alcohol and Other Drugs program.