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Our History

Our History:

From its inception as the Marriage Guidance Council in 1973, the organisation has grown, evolved and diversified to become Relationships Australia NT as it is known today.

The Marriage Guidance Council was funded by the Cyclone Tracy Relief for Darwin and the Betting Control Board funds, and started out with a mere three staff members; a director, a staff counsellor and a secretary who collectively provided services to the greater Darwin area. Today Relationships Australia services much of the NT and has offices and services in Alice Springs, Katherine and Darwin.

By 1988 and the Marriage Guidance Council’s 15th AGM, it had employed a counsellor in Alice Springs and further five staff. In 1993, the staff complement had grown to eight; an Executive Director, four counsellors (one in Alice Springs), two receptionists and an admin person. At this time, marriage counselling was the sole service provided.

In the ten years that followed, the Marriage Guidance Council went through significant growth and diversification to service the needs of its Territory clients. In February 1995, the Marriage Guidance Council officially changed its name to Relationships Australia Northern Territory Inc.

Today Relationships Australia NT has offices in Alice Springs, Katherine and Darwin and provides services to Tennant Creek, Tiwi Islands and Nhulunbuy. We are very proud to employ a number of Aboriginal and Islander Cultural Advisors to serve the needs of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, in a culturally appropriate way. People who identify as Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander represent around 20% of the organisation’s clients and staff.

Relationships Australia NT’s budget has grown from less than $1m to almost $5m over the last ten years. Its client base has shifted towards working with greater numbers of disadvantaged people and a broader emphasis on working with children and their families.

The services we offer today include:

  • Counselling for individuals, couples and families
  • Employee Assistance Program
  • Relationship Education courses and information sessions
  • Specialised counselling for traumatised children and children at risk of or experiencing abuse or neglect
  • Specialised counselling and record tracing for former migrants and Forgotten Australians abused as children in institutions
  • Helping people affected by the Royal Commission into Childhood Sexual Abuse
  • Mediations for separating couples regarding both children and finances
  • Specialised culturally appropriate services provided by Aboriginal and Islander Cultural advisors for separating Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander couples regarding both children and finances
  • Partnerships and community based CALD (migrant and refugee) projects
  • Professional Training and Supervision
  • Youth Diversion service in Alice Springs
  • Youth in Communities professional development and mentoring for remote youth workers in approx. 14 communities across the NT
  • Family Law Pathways Network supporting information exchange and networking between professionals in the Family Law sector.

We are proud to have contributed to a community where relationships are respectful, diversity is valued and where people have a sense of belonging and connection.

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