The Gay & Lesbian Counselling Service (GLCS) of NSW offers anonymous and confidential telephone counselling, information and referral to the gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender (GLBT) and related communities, on sexuality and general life issues. All for the price of a local call or free if you’re in regional NSW. We also run free groups in Newtown.

The service has always been volunteer-driven, since Phone-A-Friend was started by CAMP (Campaign Against Moral Persecution) in 1972, operating from the home of two early members. CAMP seeded various activist and support groups, while Phone-A-Friend kept the company registration – becoming Gays Counselling Service in 1983 then Gay & Lesbian Counselling Service in 1990.

While the experience of being queer has changed since the ‘70s, non-judgemental support services are still needed; we answer 1300 – 1600 calls per year plus numerous enquiries from mainstream services and still have new people dropping in to our support groups.

• Counselling & Information Line – daily 5.30pm – 10.30pm: 8594 9596 (Sydney), 1800 184 527 (regional NSW)

• Lesbian Line (for women, by women) – Mondays 6.30pm – 9.30pm: 8594 9595 (Sydney), 1800 144 527 (regional NSW)

• Women’s Coming Out Group – fortnightly Thursdays 7pm; no need to register, check our website or call 8594 9500 on the day in case of cancellations. Next group: Thursday 11 November, 43 Bedford St Newtown.

• Men’s Group – re-launching early 2011, watch this space!

• SMART Drug & Alcohol Recovery – weekly Mondays 6pm; not GLBT exclusive but staffed by volunteers and GLBT-friendly.

The Sydney Roller Derby League has made us their service partner for November – thanks SRDL. Come to the bout Saturday, November 20 and please drop your spare change in our fundraising tins. Details at  www.sydneyrollerderby.com

info: Fiona Paskulich is the GLCS administrator co-ordinator. to find out more phone 02 8594 9500 (Wed – Fri), email admin@glcsnsw.org.au or visit www.glcsnsw.org.au

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