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Defence Member and Family Support

For ADF members and their families

1800 624 608

Programs & services

Defence Member and Family Support 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.

24 Hour support

If you need support, help, or advice at any time, the Defence Member and Family Helpline operates 24-7 and is staffed by qualified human services professionals including social workers and psychologists.

Support during deployment and time apart

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

Support during relocation

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

Partner employment assistance

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.

Related: Partners

Children’s education

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.

Related: Childcare

Dependants with special needs

Families who have dependants with special needs can obtain practical assistance to reduce the impact of relocation.

Related: Special needs

Emergency and crisis support

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 Member and Family Helpline on or 1800 624 608. We also provide support programs in instances of illness, injury or bereavement.

Related: Emergency & crisis support

Your community

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

Transitioning to civilian life

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

Defence Family Matters magazine

We produce Defence Family Matters, a free tri-annual lifestyle magazine specifically for the families of military personnel.

Related: DFM

Services for Reservists

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.

Related: Reserves

Services for Command

We provide a range of services to help Commanding Officers to support the welfare of ADF members and their families.

Related: Command