Eating Disorders Victoria (EDV) provides a comprehensive support and information service on all aspects of eating disorders. EDV incorporates a unique approach to the provision of clinical and non-clinical support services through a blend of qualified professionals and lived experience of employees and volunteers. The approach and services provided by EDV have a direct impact on the mental health and wellbeing of thousands of Victorians every year.
Our Strategic Approach
EDV operates at a number of strategic levels in the pursuit of a future where the incidence, duration and impacts of all eating disorders are reduced. The following objectives form part of the strategic plan 2012-15.
- Build and grow the EDV brand as a single point of information, support and referral for people with eating disorders and their families, friends and the wider community
- Diversify funding and income sources to increase annual income.
- Develop strategic partnerships to ensure EDV services are embedded in mental health and community systems; specifically in the areas of education, research, advocacy, marketing, funding and health promotion.
- Influence and participate in shaping broad public health and wellbeing policy.
Eating Disorders Victoria engages with key policy makers and stakeholders to help shape policies which support the cultural changes that are needed to reduce eating disorders in our community.
We have representatives on advisory committees, collaborations and consortia relating to eating disorder treatment services, positive body image, obesity, healthy eating in schools and others.
Key activities in recent times have included:
- Membership of:
- Advisory committee for the Centre For Excellence in Eating Disorders (CEED)
- Advisory Committee for Body image and Eating disorders Treatment Recovery Service (BETRS) at the Austin/St Vincent’s Hospitals
- Eating Disorders taskforce established by Minister for Mental Health, Hon Mary Wooldridge
- National Eating Disorders Australian Collaboration (NEDC)
- Submissions/presentations to:
- Victorian Government in response to the proposed mental health reform strategy for community based (PDRSS) mental health services.
- Victorian Government in response to the proposed reform of the Mental Health Act
- Australia and NZ Academy of Eating Disorders (ANZAED) annual conference
- Development of:
- New community awareness campaign ‘Feed the Soul’ to encourage a holistic and healthy approach to beliefs, attitudes and behaviours about food and eating
- Community and media activities in Body Image and Eating Disorders Awareness week in September
- Media content and responses as requested
- EDV position paper and guidelines on the portrayal of body images by the media, fashion and advertising industries
- Content for publications in partnership with other professional organisations regarding eating disorders and body image (including Diabetes Victoria, Beyond Blue, Better Health Channel, Australian College of Educators)
Prevention and early intervention strategy
Broad community approach:
Awareness of eating disorders to the wider population is promoted through information dissemination as a preventative strategy. This is achieved through:
- the provision of a number of events, workshops and community awareness activities throughout the year;
- extensive media activities;
- dissemination of brochures and fact sheets through the Eating Disorders Helpline,
- comprehensive and up-to-date website.
EDV staff work closely with schools to educate teachers, student welfare officers, school nurses, parents and the school community on eating disorders and early identification of problems.
Our schools approach includes:
- prevention - building understanding of protective factors to enhance mental health and wellbeing, encouraging positive role modelling, examining school policies and culture;
- mindfulness - exploring individual and family eating behaviours which can protect against eating disorders and obesity;
- early identification and intervention through increased understanding of early warning signs and risk factors in students.
- other activities as developed in response to requests from schools for information and support
Clinical and non-clinical support throughout the recovery process
First point of contact:
Services such as the Eating Disorders Helpline and the EDV website are often the first point of contact for many people who discover they have an eating disorder, or their family and friends. Through these services, information and support is made easily accessible to service users (who can choose to remain anonymous if they wish), in a confidential, respectful and non-threatening manner.
Clinical support from EDV Psychology
EDV offers private psychology sessions for individuals with an eating disorder and friends and family who are supporting a loved one through this difficult time. This service is designed for those seeking a psychologist who understands the needs of people affected by an eating disorder. Clinicians at EDV Psychology have specific training, experience and skills in supporting people with eating disorders, and aim to help clients create sustainable changes so they can live a healthy and fulfilling life. We work collaboratively with our clients to develop skills and coping strategies that will empower them with tools to sustain positive growth and change for recovery.
Non-clinical support to complement medical treatment:
EDV's non-clinical support services effectively underpin and strengthen clinical treatment through the provision of resilience skills, education, encouragement and support for families and friends.
These services include:
- Support groups (individual, family and friends and/or combined groups),
- Psycho-education programs for individuals affected by an eating disorder and carers, family members and friends,
- Online services such as the EDV Online Forum,
- the EDV specialist library,
- Professional, community and schools education.
Relapse prevention and recovery maintenance
EDV recognises that eating disorders are serious and chronic illnesses which require long-term support for healing and full recovery to take place. We also recognise the reality of relapses both in the early stage of recovery, and in some cases after a full recovery has been made.
EDV provides ongoing support to promote long term recovery through the provision of:
- support groups;
- the EDV specialist library;
- up to date information and research via the EDV website;
- EDV Online Forum.
What Our Users Say:
Feedback from EDV service users communicates the invaluable nature of the support services provided to people and the profound impact these have on people's lives:
"I see light where before there was darkness. You guys have been lifesavers. I can't begin to thank you."
"I feel exceptionally lucky to have such knowledgeable experts available to us."
"Thank you for uplifting our spirits, knowing there is someone out there who genuinely cares"
"It was helpful to discuss how far I've come through recovery"
"I felt encouraged for the progress I have made myself"
"(The recovery support group) helped me gain insight into the problem"
"(The carer workshop) was very inspiring and empowering"
"Keep up the great work, you're all doing a great job in supporting sufferers and carers/families of people with eating disorders"
- Last revision date: Tuesday, 26 May 2015 14:19