Are you having trouble healing after the recent bushfires?

I am offering FREE counselling to those in the Hawkesbury community who feel that their mental health has been affected by the 2019/2020 bushfire season

My name is Bernadette McCarthy and I am a Psychologist and local resident living in East Kurrajong. Whilst my family escaped direct damage to our property and have come out relatively unscathed during the recent bushfires, I have been keenly aware that others in our community were not so lucky. Many residents did suffer directly in a number of ways – whether as service personel, defending homes, losing property or impacting livelihoods. Then there are those who were not directly affected but have been left feeling profoundly impacted by the months of stress, worry and hyper-vigilance caused by the length and severity of this fire season. Most people will heal naturally over time as they process the events with friends and family and get their lives back in order. For others though, recovery is not so straightforward and they may need some extra help to get their lives and mental health back on track.

The bushfires may be over for most but for some people the effects will still be causing distress many weeks or months later.

Are you:

  • Feeling unusually worried or anxious about the threat of bushfires or other natural disasters?
  • More emotional or teary than usual?
  • Having difficulty sleeping or having bad dreams?
  • Experiencing painful memories or flashbacks that you can’t switch off?
  • Finding it hard to relax?
  • More irritable, stressed or snappy than normal?
  • Withdrawing from life, friendships or family life?


The government has announced a package of counselling help for those whose mental or emotional health has been affected by the recent bushfires.


Who can access this service?

This service is for anyone who feels that their mental health has been negatively affected by the recent bushfires – whether you were in the front line or were not directly affected. *It is not for those who have mental health issues for other reasons.

Key points:

  • Provided at no cost to you (I will be bulk billing these sessions directly to Medicare so there will be no gap)
  • Private, discreet and confidential
  • No GP referral required for up to 10 sessions in 2020
  • Provided by a Hawkesbury local
  • Available on Fridays (by appointment only)
  • Location: Kurrajong Village


Please get in touch with me if you or someone you love has been affected and would like some support.