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Christmas 2009

Braver, Stronger, Wiser

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The Salvation Army has launched a major initiative to help deal with depression in rural Australia, as figures show depression now affects one million adults in Australia each year.

See media release or read on below for more information.

We would love to hear your feedback about the DVD. Please email us.

What is Braver, Stronger, Wiser?

Braver, Stronger, WiserBraver, Stronger, Wiser is a new DVD produced by The Salvation Army that has been designed especially to help people in rural communities recognise and deal with depression.

You can register to receive your FREE Braver, Stronger, Wiser DVD by calling 13 SALVOS (13 72 58) or filling in the form below. DVDs will be sent from mid-December and during January.

The DVD aims both to celebrate the life and resilience of rural Australia, and to help counter disturbing suicide statistics coming out of many farming communities.

Braver, Stronger, Wiser shares the stories of four people living in rural and remote Australia who have struggled with – and sought help to manage – various forms of depression. Read more about the characters below.

It features an extensive range of resources including emergency contact numbers, a link to The Salvation Army’s Hope for Life online suicide prevention training program, expert advice from Professor Michael Baigent of beyondblue, and much more.

Anna Rudd, manager of The Salvation Army’s Dream Films and producer of Braver, Stronger, Wiser says: “The whole purpose of the DVD really is to save lives, and to get across the message that there is hope, and there is help available.”

From mid-December this year, The Salvation Army will freely distribute 500,000 of the DVDs to more than one million rural Australians, including mailing it to 51,000 of Australia’s most remote households who have access to few or no medical or counselling services. It will also be distributed through rural GP networks, Salvation Army corps (churches), rural chaplains, 50 rural ABC radio stations, rural postal agencies, and rural Landcare offices.


About the characters

The four key people featured in Braver, Stronger, Wiser all show how depression damaged their lives – and how they sought help and are today successfully managing the issue.

Catherine Driver battled postnatal depression and could not get assistance … she has since been diagnosed as bi-polar and today manages a 70,000 acre property in Charleville, Queensland, as a single mum.

Mark Pickford – a fifth generation farmer – was running a farm that at one point was losing $10,000 a month. He talks in the film about how he battled depression after having to sell the farm. However, the outcome has been very positive, with Mark now enjoying much improved relationships with his family, particularly his children.

Hannah Stone had suicidal thoughts and was diagnosed with depression due to a chemical imbalance. She spoke bravely to her school as a teenager about her depression … and today she has turned a corner and works in real estate.

Warren Timothy turned to alcohol and marijuana after his father’s death. Today he is clean and sober, and after a battle with depression is a happy family man.

Register to receive the DVD


Salvo rural chaplains & support

Rural chaplain hands a Christmas hamper to a woman living in rural areaThe Salvation Army provides a network of support for people in regional and remote areas in need of practical assistance, or who would simply benefit from a listening ear or a hand of friendship. This includes:

  • Rural chaplaincy - a team of chaplains provide emotional and practical support across rural areas of Australia. Contact a chaplain in NSW, ACT, Qld or in Vic., SA, Tas., WA, NT or call our Social Program teams on (02) 9266 9536 or (03) 8878 4500.
  • Drought relief support - to access, please refer to your nearest Rural Chaplain, as above.
  • Qld flood assistance - please call our flood assistance line on 1300 66 22 17
  • Outback Flying Service - covers vast areas of remote Australia. Contact the Queensland Outback Flying Service chaplains on (07) 4749 3875 or the Northern Territory Outback Flying Chaplains on (08) 8945 0176.
  • Telephone counselling - trained counsellors at The Salvation Army Hope Line are available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year to take your call. Call 1300 467 354 (or 1300 HOPE LINE) from anywhere in Australia for the cost of a local call.
  • Hope for Life - to access The Salvation Army suicide prevention and bereavement support service, visit
  • For more information, read our page on rural support provided by The Salvation Army.

Other contacts

  • The Salvation Army Qld Flood Assistance Line 1300 66 22 17
  • The Salvation Army Hope Line 1300 467 354 or 1300 HOPE LINE
  • The Salvation Army Hope For Life
  • Australian Psychological Society (find a psychologist) 1800 333 497
  • Beyondblue info line 1300 22 46 36
  • Bush Crisis Line and Support Services (24hr support for rural health practitioners and their families) 1800 805 391
  • Centrelink (info on all government benefits) 13 61 50
  • Centrelink Drought Assistance Line 13 23 16
  • Centrelink Farmer Assistance Line 1800 050 585
  • Kids Help Line 1800 551 800
  • Lifeline 13 11 14
  • Lifeline’s “Just Ask” (Rural mental health information) 1300 13 11 14
  • Mensline Australia 1300 789 978
  • Parent Help Line (Child and Youth Health) 1300 346 277
  • Relationships Australia 1300 364 277
  • Rural and Remote Mental Health 13 14 65
  • Rural Women’s Telephone Counselling Service 1800 182 098
  • Trans-Help Foundation (Support for transport drivers and their families) 1300 787 996
  • Women’s Information Service 1800 188 158
  • Emergency (Police, Fire, Ambulance) Dial 000

Fact sheet on depression

If you believe you have symptoms of depression, talk to a GP or other health professional. Depression can be treated and with the right treatment, most people recover … it’s estimated around one million Australians live with depression. It’s an issue that many people face. Help is out there.

Download our fact sheet on depression. All information in this fact sheet has been provided by beyondblue: the national depression initiative