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Family Relationship Services Program

The Family Relationship Counselling Service provided by Cairnmillar is funded under the Australian Government’s Family Relationship Service Program (FRSP). The relationship counselling service is available to individuals, couples, families and children experiencing relationship difficulties.

Services Provided

  • Counselling for couples about to be married and require pre-marriage education.
  • Counselling for families wanting to improve or strengthen their relationships.
  • Counselling for families having relationship difficulties to prevent separation
  • Counselling for individuals who have separated
  • Counselling for individuals who have separated and are having difficulty parenting effectively
  • Counselling for individuals with relationship difficulties
  • Counselling for children who have been affected by separation and divorce
  • Counselling for grandparents and other extended family members affected by a family separation

Eligibility for the Service

The Service is available to all members of the community irrespective of barriers such as:

  • Race, Religious background, language or ethnic background
  • Gender
  • Disability
  • Age
  • Socio-economic disadvantage, or
  • Any other unjustifiable basis

Cairnmillar receives funding for the FRSP counselling in the following regions:

  • South East Outer Melbourne
  • Inner Melbourne
  • Boroondara City

Referrals to another FRSP Service, FRC or Family Relationships Online

In some cases, clients of the service will be referred to the Family Relationship Advice Line (Advice Line) or another FRSP service. This involves advising them of the following information. The Family Relationship Advice Line (Advice Line) is a national telephone service providing free information, advice and referral service to assist people affected by family relationship or separation issues. The advice Line complements the information and services offered by Family Relationship Centres and Family Relationships Online. It provides a nationally accessible service for people who may not have access to a Centre or the internet.

The Advice Line number is 1800 050 321 and it is open 8am – 8pm Monday to Friday and 10am – 4pm on Saturdays (local time, excluding national public holidays). The Advice Line has four core components:

  • Information officers
  • Parenting advisers
  • Legal Advisers
  • Telephone dispute resolution service

Calls to the advice Line are answered by trained information officers who provide the caller with appropriate information and referrals to other services and a parenting adviser, where required. Separated parent who call the Advice Line are offered a transfer to a parenting adviser. Parenting advisers, being qualified social workers, then undertake a more in-depth assessment of the caller’s needs and can provide individual, specialised advice. If, during the caller’s assessment the parenting adviser believes the caller would benefit from simple legal advice that are able to transfer callers to a legal adviser. A parenting adviser may also assess a caller as suitable for dispute.

Cairnmillar Client Charter

Our Mission

Cairnmillar serves the community by promoting positive relationships for the achievement of wellbeing and the fullness of life.

Our Commitment

  • Providing you with high quality professional relationship service
  • Providing services to people regardless of gender, race, sexual preference, and religion, and culture, social or economic circumstances
  • Contributing to community wellbeing by providing preventive and early intervention programs and support services, which minimise the emotional, social and economic costs associated with disruption to relationships
  • Helping people to deal positively with significant life changes, to develop their  potential and to optimise their quality of life
  • Creating an environment in which clients and staff are encouraged to learn and develop.

Our Values

Cairnmillar staff and directors are committed to high quality, client-focused, professional service provision aimed at enabling children, young people and adults, in all their diversity, to develop and sustain safe, responsible, supportive and nurturing relationships.

Ethical Standards

Cairnmillar recognises the essential dignity of each and every person and our practices are supported by the following ethical standards:

  • Cairnmillar services are to be used only for the good of the organisation and not for personal gain or profit by our staff or board members
  • All Cairnmillar’s staff have a responsibility for preventing situations which may cause harm to themselves or others, by working safely and identifying risks to safety
  • No staff will engage in any sexual relationship with a client/s or former client/s
  • Counselling will not be provided to members of Cairnmillar‘s staff, their partners or direct family members.


Your right to confidentiality in Counselling and family dispute resolution is protected under the Family Law Act 1975. Confidentiality is limited, however, when a counsellor or a family dispute resolution practitioner suspects child abuse or reasonably believes there is a threat to a child, another person, property or public safety.

Privacy Statement

Cairnmillar is committed to providing you with a quality service which includes ensuring that your privacy is maintained. We are bound by the Privacy Act 1988 and the Health Records Act 2001 under which you are entitled to:

  • Know why your personal information is being collected and how it will be used;
  • Ask for access to your records, including your health information;
  • Take up opportunities to stop receiving direct marketing material;
  • Correct inaccurate information about you’
  • Know which organisations will be given your personal information’
  • Ensure organisations only use your information for purposes they have told you about;
  • Find out what information an organisation keeps about you and how they manage it.

Cairnmillar is committed to providing excellent client service and welcomes positive feedback on the services provided and any feedback, you care to give.

Collection and storage of personal information

Under Cairnmillar’s funding agreement to provide counselling services to the Commonwealth Department of Families, Community Housing and Indigenous Affairs (FaCSHIA), Cairnmillar is obliged to provide information and statistical details about our services through an electronic data collection system called FRSP-OnLine.

The data collected is used to monitor contract performance accountability and to provide trends in service delivery and other social indicators. Cairnmillar may, from time to time, enter into contracts with other agencies who might specify similar accountability requirements. This Privacy Statement also covers those contracts.

All psychologists, provisional psychologists or counsellors providing counselling and psychotherapeutic services at Cairnmillar are required to keep case notes about matters or information gained in individual, joint or family sessions.

Cairnmillar collects information from the forms that are completed when attending the service, or through information provided by the person or agency referring clients to the service and information gained in the sessions. All information collected by Cairnmillar is stored as written case records, electronic files and/or computerised data records.

Cairnmillar Complaints Policy

If you are not happy with any aspect of the services you have received please

  • Speak directly to your counsellor, psychologist or program facilitator
  • If you are still concerned phone (03) 9813 3400

More Information

Find out more about the FRSP counselling service by following this link to the brochures and fact sheets prepared by The Attorney-General’s Department.