Defence Community Organisation offers a broad range of programs and services to help Defence families make the most of the challenges and opportunities provided by the military way of life.
If you need support, help, or advice at any time, the Defence Family Helpline operates 24-7 and is staffed by qualified human services professionals including social workers and psychologists.
Time apart from families due to deployments, training or other Service requirements is an integral feature of Defence life. Our services seek to inform and prepare you for these times and provide you with support to make these experiences positive and strengthening ones for your family.
Related: Deployment & time apart
We offer support, practical assistance and resources to help Defence families to manage a mobile lifestyle, and reduce the effects of relocation on family wellbeing.
Related: During deployment
Partners of ADF members can apply to access funding for employment assistance to enhance their career options and to help them to secure employment when posted with their partner. We also help partners develop stress management strategies and build on their strengths and resilience.
We provide information, resources and programs to help minimise the disruption to children's education caused by relocation. Our Education Liaison Officers are specialists and available to advise Defence families on education issues. School based Aides and Mentors support Defence children through the process of changing schools and times of parental absence.
Related: Kids' education
Children of mobile Defence families can receive priority of access to Defence childcare centres around Australia. Funding may also be available for community organisations which provide childcare services and Defence partners seeking to set up a family day care business.
Families who have dependants with special needs can obtain practical assistance to reduce the impact of relocation.
Related: Special needs
Practical assistance is available to families facing a crisis when an ADF member is absent from home for Service reasons. In other times of need, families can access 24-hour support, social work and assessment, or referral from the all-hours Defence Family Helpline on DefenceFamilyHelpline@defence.gov.au or 1800 624 608. We also provide support programs in instances of illness, injury or bereavement.
Related: Emergency & crisis support
Families seeking to connect with or contribute to their local community can obtain personalised advice or access our directory of Defence and community run organisations, groups and events in their local area. Not for profit community organisations running programs in support of Defence families can apply for financial support.
Related: Your community
We provide a range of practical guidance and support to assist ADF members planning to leave Defence to make a seamless transition to civilian life.
Related: ADF Transition
We produce Defence Family Matters, a free tri-annual lifestyle magazine specifically for the families of military personnel.
The families of Reserve members can access a broad range of support services, particularly when the Reservist is on continuous full-time service or away on deployment or exercise.
We provide a range of services to help Commanding Officers to support the welfare of ADF members and their families.