About EDFA

Welcome to Eating Disorders Families Australia

Eating Disorders Families Australia (EDFA) was founded by a passionate group of parents who have cared for, and are caring for, young people with eating disorders.

We believe in the power of lived experience and sharing our knowledge with others to reduce the time and suffering the whole family endures. 

The shared experiences of caring for a child desperately in need of treatment and care, while navigating a complex system, was the catalyst for EDFA.

EDFA was created by families and carers for families and carers, and we are committed to supporting them to be the most informed and effective carers for their loved one.

We are proud to be a collective voice on a national platform. We know that parents and carers have a pivotal role to play in the treatment plan and must be respected for their opinions when decisions are being made about eating disorder treatments.

Expert parents and carers

We understand eating disorders. As expert parents and carers there’s not much we haven’t seen or experienced first hand. We ‘get it’ because we lived it, we survived it, or are surviving anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, binge eating disorder, ARFID, OSFED and more.

And collectively, we have a strong desire to help other parents on their own journey to recovery.

Because recovery is possible, but it’s not always linear and there is much to consider and understand.

Doctor treating anorexic teenager and giving eating disorder support to family

Family at the heart of treatment

The team at EDFA is passionate about supporting the effective involvement of families and carers in treatment programs.

Family and carer involvement is an important aspect of treatment for people with eating disorders, and can improve the likelihood of treatment success.

This is not opinion, this is based on clinical research and evidence.

The advantages of allying with carers

As a service or clinician, you are likely to find many advantages to working closely with families and carers in treatment, including:

  • Better outcomes for patient
  • Improving job satisfaction
  • Better information for clinician and patients
  • Recovery-oriented environment around patients
  • Building a safer and stronger community around patients
Siblings affected by eating disorders getting support.

Impact on the whole family

An eating disorder diagnosis impacts every member of the family. And while it may be obvious that parents and carers carry the load, it is important to recognise how siblings are affected.

Their mental health and wellbeing can be compromised by the worry about their brother or sister, so it’s important that siblings are supported as well.

Carer Support Groups

Learning and hearing from others who ‘get it’ and can provide helpful practical advice is key to being able to support our family members effectively. 

We ‘get it’ because we are all experienced parents and carers with real, authentic, lived eating disorder carer experience. We know how isolating it can be, and we are committed to providing increased opportunities for people to connect in face-to-face settings and online. 

strive Carer Support Groups:

  • Provide a safe, supportive place for carers to meet each month in a semi-structured environment which allows for both knowledge sharing and peer support
  • Provide information and resources to assist parents and carers to understand eating disorders and their integral role in recovery
  • Encourage empowerment of carers in their role in the recovery of the person with the eating disorder
  • Are run by trained volunteer carers, for carers

Eating Disorder Education

EDFA runs bi-monthly national education and information webinars, with each seminar hosted by a different lived experience or clinical expert in the eating disorder field.

We run these eating disorder education seminars so we are able to up-skill parents and carers by providing resources and information on evidence-based, emerging and adjunctive therapies.

Experience has shown us that education helps people to be more effective, informed and compassionate carers. 

Find the next Eating Disorder Education Webinar. 

Together we are stronger

Eating disorders affect children, adolescents and adults all over the world. Having an eating disorder can lead to many lengthy complications if not treated effectively, including both mental and physical ailments. In extreme cases, eating disorders can even be fatal. Finding an effective treatment program for your loved one is essential for parents and carers of people with eating disorders.

Here at EDFA, we recognise that together we are stronger through peer support, connection, information and education, your journey with your loved one will be a supported one of the most important components of any eating disorder treatment program is education. 

Learn more about how EDFA can help you learn about and understand the complexities of eating disorders and how to manage and cope with the challenges. Take the Feed Your Instinct early identification test here.

Become a member of EDFA for $25 per year (Australian Carers Only)

EDFA is a proud not-for-profit, predominantly volunteer-run organisation. 

We invite you to be part of a revolutionary peer support group making positive changes in the eating disorder space. Strength in numbers means we are able to affect change and have the collective voice of the carers recognised.

We provide opportunities to connect with other parents and carers who share your experiences, helping you to feel less alone and isolated.

Yearly membership is just $25.

Membership gives access to:

A range of resources in our Member Only section of the website including Educational Recordings, Member Recommended Clinicians and Services, and more.

Over 70 support groups and education sessions per year. including:

Twice monthly education sessions

strive Carer Support Groups for carers of loved ones with any type of eating disorder (run three times each month)

strive ARFID Carer Support Group (run monthly)

strive bulimia nervosa Carer Support Group (run quarterly)

strive binge eating disorder Carer Support Group (run quarterly) 

strive4Men Carer Support Group (run quarterly) – a group for male carers 

siblings Support Group (run monthly) – a group for siblings of those with an eating disorder

daily online support through our private strive Australia Facebook Group and the opportunity to connect, share, learn and ask questions is another benefit of being part of our EDFA community.

discounts to eating disorder events and conferences

Your membership helps EDFA with ongoing costs of running a not-for-profit organisation, and importantly, shows Government that families value, need and believe in this type of lived experience support. Strength in numbers helps EDFA lobby as the collective voice of carers for  better services, treatments, access to expert clinicians and specialised eating disorder units, to help our loved ones in their recovery journey and to acknowledge the impact of an eating disorder diagnosis on the entire family unit.

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