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30 September 2020

Beyond Blue small business mental health initiative a life-saver: Ombudsman

The Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman Kate Carnell has praised Beyond Blue for its latest initiative to support the mental health of small business owners.

Beyond Blue has today launched a free online training course to help small business advisers provide mental health support to small business owners impacted by the COVID crisis.

“Beyond Blue, with the help of partners Xero and Go1, is once again taking a lead role in supporting the small business community at a time when they need it most,” Ms Carnell says.

“There has never been a tougher time to be in business and the psychological distress caused by this pandemic cannot be underestimated.

“Given small business loans are often secured against the family home, the stakes are incredibly high and that is understandably taking a huge toll on small business owners’ mental health.

“Beyond Blue is responding to the needs of small businesses, by providing evidence-based training to trusted advisers – who small business owners often turn to in times of crisis.

“Equally small business advisers are in a good position to notice if their client is struggling to cope.

“This free online course offers small business advisers information about what signs to look out for, how to start a conversation with a client they’re worried about and how to connect small business owners to appropriate support. This practical support can save lives.

“It equips advisers with the tools and confidence they need to play a crucial support role that goes beyond financial advice.

“I thank Xero and Go1 for their commitment to supporting the small business community in a holistic way.”

The free Mental wellbeing: support yourself and small business course can be accessed by all Australian small business advisers via Beyond Blue’s Heads Up website.

The Beyond Blue Support Service is available via phone 24/7 on 1300 22 4636 or via beyondblue.org.au/get-support. The new Coronavirus Mental Wellbeing Service is available 24/7 at coronavirus.beyondblue.org.au. Its dedicated phone line, staffed by mental health professionals briefed on the pandemic response, is now open on 1800 512 348.