Helping military families cope with trauma

Families play a critical role supporting current and former Australian Defence Force (ADF) members, so it’s vital that they are supported themselves.

12 December 2019

Helping military families cope with trauma - booklets developed by DVA and Phoenix Australia

DVA has partnered with Phoenix Australia to develop a series of booklets to support the families of serving, transitioning or ex-serving members of the ADF who are experiencing mental health concerns following trauma.

When launching the booklets, Minister for Veterans and Defence Personnel, Darren Chester said the booklets are another way the department is putting veterans and their families first. They also show that the Government works closely with professional organisations such as Phoenix Australia to deliver the best resources possible.

The booklets are called:

  • Supporting your partner
  • Helping your children
  • Supporting your son or daughter
  • When your parent is having problems (for 13–17 year olds)
  • What’s happening to my family? (for children 9–12) 

The books were developed through a collaborative process led by Phoenix Australia involving DVA, members of the veteran and Defence communities, families affected by trauma, Open Arms – Veterans & Families Counselling, and Defence Community Organisation.

For those in need of immediate mental health support and counselling, Open Arms can be contacted on 1800 011 046. DVA’s online wellbeing portal,, also provides veterans and their families with resources and links to services for support with mental health and wellbeing.

The five booklets are currently free to download via the AT-Ease website.

Note that the content of the AT-Ease website is being moved over to that of Open Arms. The AT-Ease website will remain live until the end of January 2020.