The Butterfly Foundation have launched the #TalkingHelps campaign that encourages Australians living with an eating disorder to get support.

Anyone, of any age, gender, culture or background can experience eating or body image concerns. Butterfly Foundation has a confidential, free and qualified support team who are ready to talk. Whether you’re concerned for yourself or for someone else, #TalkingHelps.

eating or body image concerns

Only 25% of Australians living with an eating disorder currently access treatment

“Our latest campaign ‘Talking Helps’, aims to eliminate this common stereotype and encourage help-seeking by focusing on the stories of five unique Australians,” said Butterfly CEO, Kevin Barrow. “When you can relate to a person’s life experience and story of their eating disorder it is often a strong step to dismantling the barrier that is stopping you from seeking help. Seeing yourself in another person’s story can help to break down the feeling of isolation and help you to connect with the support you need.”

Katie, one of Butterfly’s Talking Helps Champions who has lived experience of anorexia and bulimia, found her sexuality and being in a same-sex relationship presented a different set of challenges when it came to her eating disorder experiences.

“I didn’t want my partner at the time to think that I was comparing our body types. I didn’t want her to be overly focused on her own eating, or her own body image.”

However, reaching out, getting help and subsequently learning to be kinder to herself have been paramount to the quality of life that she now experiences.

Juliette Thomson, Psychologist and Manager of Butterfly’s National Helpline commented, “Anyone can experience an eating disorder, but people who do not fit the image of what an eating disorder looks like can have a harder time accessing treatment and care. In fact, less than one in four people with eating disorders access professional help.”

“The Helpline is a free, safe and confidential service providing counselling, support groups, information and referrals to health professionals around Australia screened for an understanding of eating disorders. All our counsellors are qualified mental health professionals with specialist training in eating disorders and body image.”

“Talking to our Helpline can be the first step in getting support, even if you’re not ready to change. It offers support along the journey, with a relapse, or acts as an important source of information if you’re worried about someone you know.”

For more information on Butterfly’s ‘Talking Helps’ campaign visit: The full campaign media release can be read here:

Help and Support

Butterfly Helpline counsellors have competence training from LGBTI Health Alliance, Aboriginal Cultural Competence Training and an understanding of the challenges people from different cultural backgrounds face. 

There is also a Translation and Interpreting Service that is free and available to access via the Helpline. It is available to anyone from a non-English speaking background, via 131 500. More information about eating disorders can be found via Butterfly’s website in 23 different languages.

Anyone needing support with eating disorders or body image issues is encouraged to contact:

  • Butterfly National Helpline on 1800 33 4673 (1800 ED HOPE) or ua.gro.ylfrettub@troppus
  • Eating Disorders Victoria Helpline on 1300 550 23
  • For urgent support call Lifeline 13 11 14