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CatholicCare Wilcannia-Forbes’ Steffi Purdue and colleagues across western NSW advocate on behalf of people experiencing hardship or are at financial risk (Supplied)

CatholicCare Wilcannia-Forbes delivered more hours of support and assisted more clients in 2022-23 as natural disasters and rising financial stress caused strong demand for social services in the regional New South Wales diocese.

A total of 4590 people across western NSW received support from the organisation in the 12 months to June 30, a 7.5 per cent increase from the previous year. 

The hours of support delivered by CatholicCare Wilcannia-Forbes jumped by 14 per cent to 15,159 hours in the same period. 

CatholicCare Wilcannia-Forbes serves the Wilcannia-Forbes Diocese, which spans the western 52 per cent of NSW and 414,398 square kilometres. 

Statistics demonstrating the organisation’s impact have been published in its latest annual report. 

CatholicCare Wilcannia-Forbes mobilised to provide support in the wake of flooding at Eugowra and communities along the Lachlan catchment in late 2022 that caused great loss and hardship. 

“With the unprecedented flood disaster, our financial counsellors met a new community need as events unfolded,” CatholicCare Wilcannia-Forbes chief executive officer Anne-Marie Mioche said. 

“During November and December 2022, we assisted 199 residents affected by flood, and in many cases, resulting trauma. Our disaster recovery support sessions at Eugowra and Forbes continue.” 

CatholicCare Wilcannia-Forbes has seen increased financial stress across all demographics. 

“Our financial counsellors negotiate and advocate on behalf of people who are experiencing financial hardship or are at financial risk,” Ms Mioche said. 

“People who have never accessed our services before are reaching out for support.” 

CatholicCare Wilcannia-Forbes also launched new services to meet community needs. This includes the Broken Hill Children’s Contact Service, which enables children from separated families to interact safely with both parents, and the Men’s Behaviour Change Program. 


CatholicCare Wilcannia Forbes supports communities in challenging year (CatholicCare Wilcannia-Forbes)