To find out about events for ADF families in Sydney, visit our Eventbrite page. You'll be able to RSVP, add events to your calendar and share with friends.
With the internet and social media flooded with a range of COVID-19 information and advice, it’s important to make sure the information you’re seeking comes from an official source. To help you, we’ve put together a list of official websites where families can get up-to-date information about a range of COVID issues like travel restrictions and border closures, non-essential travel and fines, testing locations, school arrangements, jobs and business information.
If you are looking for national information and contacts about COVID-19, see the Coronavirus tab on our Emergency and Crisis webpage.
We have also developed a Coronavirus Advice webpage which has a range of information and resources about wellbeing, tips to manage in isolation, how to support kids, maintaining healthy relationships and information about reunion leave arrangements.
For more mental health and wellbeing information and resources see our Health and Wellbeing webpage.
Information about Defence’s involvement in the whole-of-government response to the COVID-19 pandemic, including live blog updates can be found at the Defence response to COVID-19.
We’ve also put together some other educational resources that may help families with children during COVID-19 restrictions.
Community groups & contacts
Community group facilities are currently closed due to the COVID-19 restrictions, but you can still get involved with their online activities and virtual catch-ups. If you want to get in touch with a community group in your area, follow them on Facebook to keep up-to-date.
Kissingpoint Cottage is a Defence community house in the Sydney district of Ermington/Dundas. They support Defence members and their families in a fun and friendly environment where everyone understands the unique lifestyle and challenges faced by Defence families.
If you are new to the area or would simply like to make some new friends, find them on Facebook and join in their weekly online sessions. They would love to meet you!
Kissingpoint Cottage are running weekly catch ups and our Monthly Book Club via Zoom. We have weekly art and craft packs for contactless collection for playgroup and after school club, as well as adult crafts.
Randwick Family Centre is a community group that offers a safe place for Defence families and serving members of ALL ages, to come and connect with like-minded others. The centre and community group caters to needs of the community by providing unique and diverse activities for members. Bringing together the Defence Community in the local area of the East and surrounds. Randwick Family Centre is a place and group where you can play, learn, train, develop and most importantly; a place to connect and belong. They have a range of online activities like craft kits, after school pizza nights, online playgroup, book club and more that you can enjoy from home. Follow them on Facebook or contact the coordinators to find out more.
The Family Co is an organisation dedicated and focussed to provide services that lead to safety and well-being for families in the Sutherland Shire and St.George areas. They bring together a range of services offered by dedicated professionals that help to create brighter futures for children and their families. They aim to support and strengthen the capacity of families within our community, particularly those who have been impacted by disadvantage, violence and trauma. Through providing these services, they contribute to the promotion and maintenance of safety and wellbeing among all family members. Our Head Office is located at Jannali in Sydney’s Southern Suburbs.
The Family Co offer a dedicated Family Support Worker for Sutherland Shire & St.George based defence families, providing assistance to families facing difficult circumstances who could benefit from extra support.
The aim of the family worker is to strengthen a family's supportive and social networks, as well as enhancing the parent/ child relationship, impacted by defence specific circumstances.
The Defence Special Needs Support Group is a non-profit benevolent volunteer organisation established to assist ADF families with a family member with special needs.
The Australian Kookaburra Kids Foundation supports kids living in families affected by mental illness. The program provides recreational educational camps and other activities, giving kids a break, in a fun, positive and safe environment. Kids have the opportunity to meet other kids in similar families and develop new friendships.
Where: Kookaburra Kids Head Office
PO BOX 681, Gymea 2227
The Australian Military Wives Choir is a choir for women who support military personnel. As a no audition, no experience necessary group, they welcome new members. Despite their name bearing the word ‘wives’, they welcome any woman who has close links to serving ADF members. Perhaps you're a female ADF member or a close family member - a partner, wife, sister or mother?
Follow them on Facebook to see their online activities.
Open Arms continues to provide 24/7 counselling and support services to Australia's military community during COVID-19. If you have served one day of continuous full-time service in the ADF you can call them for support. They also support families, reservists and some peacekeepers. Call Open Arms – Veterans and Families Counselling on 1800 011 046 for free, confidential counselling and group programs to support mental health and wellbeing.
Lifeline is a national charity providing all Australians experiencing a personal crisis with access to 24 hour crisis support and suicide prevention services. Lifeline is committed to empowering Australians to be suicide-safe through connection, compassion and hope.
Beyondblue provides information and support to help everyone in Australia achieve their best possible mental health, whatever their age and wherever they live.
The Redfern Community Centre is designed for all groups from the local community. The Centre seeks to create and strengthen social links through shared cultural and recreational pursuits with a focus on art, music, culture, employment and training, and community events. Visit their website or follow them on Facebook to find out more about their online activities.
Where: 29-53 Hugo Street, Sydney.
When: Mon-Fri 9.00am-5.00pm, Sat 9.00am-2.30pm
3Bridges Community create opportunities for personal growth and assistance with day-to-day life. They run a number of programs focused on education and training, support and personal development, or social activities. Their services are for people of all ages including children and families, youth, adults and senior members of the community. 3Bridges looks after the Carss Park Community Centre, Penhurst Community Centre, Arncliffe Community Centre, and the Menai Community Centre.
Where: Carss Park Community Centre, 1/72 Carwar Ave, Carss Park
When: Mon–Fri 9.00am-4.30pm
Where: Menai Community Centre, 34 Allison Cres, Menai
When: Mon–Fri 9.00am-4.00pm
Where: Penshurst Community Centre, 23 St Georges Road, Penshurst
When: Mon–Fri 9.00am-5.00pm
Go4Fun is a free healthy living program for kids to become fitter, healthier and happier. The program is fun and interactive and supports 7 to 13 year old children and their families to adopt a healthy lifestyle and a long lasting and healthy approach to living. Children and their families become fitter, healthier and happier as they have fun, meet new friends and learn new skills. Follow them on Facebook to see their online activities.
Charity Bounce is a not for profit organisation that exists to build resiliency and positive job futures for young people at risk (12-24), using innovation through basketball to create ‘out of reach’ opportunities that inspire and motivate change. With a focus on ADF families and Indigenous and culturally diverse communities, Charity Bounce aim to move young people toward a more positive future through the development of sports, education and employment focused social programs. The programs are delivered in partnership with sporting organisations, engaging professional athletes alongside youth workers to motivate and inspire participants.
The following resources and websites can give you a good grounding in local information and services available.
HMAS Penguin + Annex
Victoria Barracks (Paddington)
Timor Barracks (Dundas)
You can also talk to your Unit Welfare Officer for more information.