AID: Member for Burnett Stephen Bennett is angry a flood trauma program has been stopped.
AID: Member for Burnett Stephen Bennett is angry a flood trauma program has been stopped. Max Fleet

Flood trauma aid stops

THE State Government has scrapped a mental health program established to help people recover from the trauma of the 2013 floods, Member for Burnett Stephen Bennett has claimed.

But Member for Bundaberg Leanne Donaldson said the program was provided in partnership with the Federal Government and was only meant to run for two years.

Mr Bennett said the $700,000 Centacare Community Mental Health Service was an initiative of the former LNP state government, and cutting it showed neglect of regional Queensland.

He said the decision not to fund the hydrotherapy pool for Childers, and now ending this program, was "really disturbing"

. "They've already had staff leave because there was no funding, and now the fact is there will be three staff out of work in a month," he said.

"This is an issue that won't go away," he said.

"We have teachers telling us that when it looks like raining hard kids are worried about how they're going to get home or even if their homes will be there."

Centacare Family and Community Support Services deputy program manager Shari Jackson said the program had seen some good outcomes in the community, but there were still some clients needing further support and assistance.

"There is still work to be done in the community to build resilience to cope with significant weather events and trauma response that people are still having to that," she said.

"Hoarding is a problem, possibly due to holding on to everything since the flood as they lost everything in the flood, also buying/collecting items are a form of comfort to them

. "Education and support is needed on this issue."

Ms Jackson said there was also a concern with elderly clients who may not have family or friend support in the local area.

People were lonely, had been displaced and experienced significant trauma and associated difficulties arising from this.

The program had also been extended to include resilience building activities in schools.

Ms Donaldson put the focus on the Federal Government, and said it was its eligibility criteria which would see the program cease once the two years was complete.