Face to face support groups
Support for people experiencing an eating disorder or body image issue and for their carers, friends and family.
You’re not alone. Learn from others’ experiences in a safe space. Support groups can be an important support for recovery – whether for your own, or if you’re supporting someone experiencing an eating or body image disorder.
Note: all our face-to-face programs are going online while COVID-19 isolation measures are in place. You will receive personalised support through a small group video-conferencing format.
Support services in Hobart and Sydney
Currently Butterfly runs support groups and other support services in Crows Nest, NSW and Hobart, Tasmania.
Not in either of these locations?
Why join a support group?
Connect with others in a safe space
Find hope and inspiration through other’s experiences
Learn skills and strategies to develop helpful thoughts and behaviours
Who are our face-to-face support groups for?
People experiencing an eating disorder or body image issue
If you are experiencing, or think you may be experiencing, an eating disorder or body image issue, find out more about our recovery support groups.
Meet our support groups team
Michelle Sperling is the National Manager, Treatment and Support.
She is a registered Clinical Social Worker and Psychotherapist. A highly-experienced eating disorder clinician.Michelle has worked in a wide range of settings including individual counselling, Butterfly’s Intensive Outpatient Program, Recovery and Carer support groups and programs.
Michelle is trained in evidence-based therapies such as Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), Schema Therapy, Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT), Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), Interpersonal Therapy (IPT) and Narrative Therapy. Michelle has a holistic approach to treatment and advocates that recovery is 100% possible. She is passionate about working with those experiencing and caring for someone eating disorder.
Jessica facilitates Sydney recovery support groups.
Jessica has been a counsellor on the Butterfly National Helpline for over two years and has more recently taken on the additional role as a support group facilitator.
With a Graduate Diploma in Counselling, Jessica understands the complex nature of eating disorders and uses her counselling skills to guide people with lived experiences.
Dedicated and passionate about working with eating disorders, Jessica is guided by her compassionate and curious nature to support those in need.
Jessica works to help you connect to your inner “healthy-self” and realise your full potential, one that she believes is deserved.
Through her work she hopes to increase understanding and available support for people experiencing eating disorder.
Archana facilitates Sydney carer support groups.
Archana facilitates the carer support group and has also facilitated the recovery support group. In addition to working on Butterfly’s National Helpline Archana is completing a Masters in Psychotherapy and Counselling, and holds a Bachelor of Counselling.
She recently co-facilitated a six-week workshop “Understanding Eating Disorder Recovery for Carers”, helping carers to develop practical skills to help their loved one through recovery.
As a mother of two girls, Archana feels passionate about empowering carers in supporting their loved one through their recovery.
Caitlin facilitates Hobart recovery and carer support groups.
Caitlin has been co-facilitating the Butterfly support groups since 2016 and has lived experience as a young carer of her two younger sisters who experienced eating disorders.
She is able to relate to this perspective as a sibling in the support groups, and both her siblings are now recovered, young adults.
Caitlin is currently completing a Masters in Clinical Psychology and additionally has experience as a Lifeline crisis support volunteer.
As Tasmanian’s eating disorder coordinator, she provides support and general information about eating disorders. She also provides guidance to individuals who are experiencing eating disorders and their carers and families.
She wholeheartedly believes that recovery is possible and she joined as a facilitator to spread this message and provide hope to people experiencing eating disorders and their families and carers.
Hobart support groups are supported by the Crown, through the Tasmanian Department of Health.
Rebecca facilitates Hobart carer support groups.
Rebecca has lived experience as a carer for her daughter who developed an eating disorder at 19. Both Rebecca and her ex-husband work in the medical field, but they became frustrated at the difficulties of finding the right care for their daughter.
Rebecca and her daughter relocated to Sydney for 10 months following her daughters’ hospitalisation and participated in Butterfly’s Intensive Outpatient Program. Rebecca’s daughter is now 22, traveling the recovery road and doing well.
Despite the move to Sydney helping Rebecca and her daughter it was isolating to be far from home. This has led Rebecca to join as a support group facilitator because she is passionate about improving the availability of care to Tasmanian’s experiencing eating disorders. She brings compassion and understanding to the support groups by providing experience-based support to carers.
Hobart support groups are supported by the Crown, through the Tasmanian Department of Health
Other services in Hobart, Tasmania
Our Hobart team can provide you with general support and referrals to local health professionals and services. For more information please contact Georgina, Mondays-Wednesdays on Georgina.Taskunas@thebutterflyfoundation.org.au or 0474 004 443
Carer recovery programs
Our peer support facilitators, accompanied by our registered psychologist, run regular programs to support carers, families and friends in their important roles in supporting recovery. Find out more about our Collaborative Care Skills Workshop.
Recovery and carer programs in Sydney
From Butterfly House, in Crows Nest, Sydney, we also run recovery programs:
Collaborative Care Skills Workshop
A face to face evidence-based workshop run by our qualified counsellors, designed to train and support carers in their role, providing practical skills to support a loved one progress in their recovery. Find out more [LINK to Collaborative Care Skills Workshop page].
Emerging program for those experiencing or recovering from an eating disorder
This eight-week skills-based program for people experiencing or recovering from eating disorders helps you to re-engage with your healthy self. It looks at positive thinking and feelings about your body and food, provides new inspiration towards wellness and gives you renewed hope for recovery.
Can’t find what you’re looking for?
Our Helpline can give you referrals to services and health practitioners around Australia or just provide support when you need it.