Drought-affected communities in rural and remote NSW will benefit from increased funding to the Royal Flying Doctor Service thanks to the Nationals in Government.

NSW Nationals Minister for Mental Health Bronnie Taylor announced the Government would provide $750,000 this year to the Royal Flying Doctor Service South Eastern Section (RFDSSE) to enhance the Peer Ambassador program they offer to communities in isolated areas of NSW affected by drought. The program is a partnership with Lifeline Broken Hill Country to Coast.

Mrs Taylor said the funding would provide essential mental health support where it is needed most in rural and remote communities experiencing the ongoing drought.

“I am passionate about providing accessible services to those who need it in rural and remote areas. By providing additional support to the Royal Flying Doctor Service’s peer support programs, we are able to support more individuals, families and communities in need,” Mrs Taylor said.

“We know access to early intervention and prevention mental health services can be very difficult for people in isolated areas to access. That’s why the services provided by the Royal Flying Doctor are so critical in overcoming the challenges that distance presents.”

This initiative is focused on prevention and early intervention; enabling people on the land to give a hand to others in need. The funding is part of the $8.275 million allocated in the Emergency Drought Package to improve access to and delivery of mental health services in rural and remote communities, and brings the total drought support investment to $1.8 billion provided by the NSW Nationals in Government.