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Eating disorder carer support groups

Get help with self-care while supporting a friend or family member

Online from anywhere in Australia

The support group is a space where people can feel free to discuss topics related to recovery from disordered eating. This is a space for people to provide and receive social support so that they can feel heard and understood. The support group does not replace treatment by a trained professional. As such, if you were wanting to get answers to specific practical questions around eating disorder recovery, it is best to either direct them to your treating professionals, or contact the Butterfly Foundation via phone or webchat. 

  • Join FREE from anywhere in Australia
  • A safe and conversational space facilitated by our specialist counsellors
  • For anyone aged 16 +
  • You don’t need to register – just log in
  • Join anonymously if you like.

When: First and third Wednesday monthly, 6:30 pm – 8:00 pm AEST
(Note: you can only log in if there is a group on at this time)


Step-by-step tech guide

Hobart, Tasmania

**Postponed until further notice**
If you would like to be updated with the new dates kindly email:

  • Get strength and support from others who are on the same journey
  • Our facilitators have experience of caring for someone with an eating disorder.

Find us at: Ground Floor, WOTSO building 162 Macquarie St. Hobart, 7000
Time: 7:00 pm – 8:30 pm
2020 dates: Tuesdays - 15 April (Wednesday), 12 May, 9 June, 14 July, 11 August, 8 September, 13 October, 10 November, 8 December 

Registrations essential: Call our Helpline on 1800 ED HOPE or email

Age: 18yo and over.
Accessibility: We are located in Hobart CBD near Franklin Square.
Fee: $10

Supported by the Crown, through the Tasmanian Department of Health. 

Sydney, New South Wales

**Postponed until further notice**
If you would like to be updated with the new dates kindly email:

  • Get strength and support from others who are on the same journey and our specialist professional counsellors
  • Learn from others with similar experiences - you don’t need to do this alone!

Find us at: Butterfly House, 103 Alexander Street, Crows Nest
Time: 7:00 pm – 9:00 pm
2020 dates: Wednesdays - 25 March, 29 April, 27 May, 24 June, 29 July, 26 August, 30 September, 28 October, 25 November, 16 December

Registrations essential: Call our Helpline on 1800 ED HOPE or email

Age: 18yo and over.
Accessibility: We are in Crows Nest, 12min walk from St. Leonards Station and 2 min walk from Willoughby Rd buses 257 and 343.  There is on-street parking in surrounding streets.
Fee: $20 ($30 per couple).


What can I expect in my first group?

You will be welcomed into an accepting space. The group is focused on how best to support your loved one through their recovery journey and will discuss topics related to making positive change and self-care.

What happens during the group?

There is no set discussion and participants are encouraged to share their own experiences as honestly and as safely as they feel comfortable. You are welcome to listen if you are not ready to speak. The shared experience of the group relies on a willingness to show compassion to others and oneself.  

How is my privacy respected?

What is said in the group stays in the group. Your privacy and confidentiality are respected. 

I identify as a diverse identity, is this a safe space for me?

The Butterfly Foundation recognises that eating disorders can affect anyone regardless of race, colour, culture, religion, sex, sexual orientation, age, disability or gender identity.  Our services are an inclusive and safe space for all members of our community.  

I am not sure if the person I am caring for has an eating disorder (or they have not been diagnosed). Can I still attend?

If you are unsure whether a loved one is experiencing an eating disorder or has not been diagnosed you are welcome to come along.

Meet the team

Michelle Sperling - Manager recovery support services & Sydney facilitator

Michelle Photo

Michelle facilitates Sydney recovery and carer support groups.

Michelle is a registered Social Worker and Psychotherapist. A highly-experienced eating disorder clinician, Michelle often facilitates our groups, and is Manager of Butterfly’s Recovery Support Services.

Having worked in a wide range of settings including individual counselling and recovery and carer support groups and programs, Michelle also provides carer support services to the IOP Family Day and support counselling for Butterfly events featuring speakers with a lived experience.

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), Family Based Therapy (FBT) and Narrative Therapy.

Michelle uses a holistic approach to treatment and is passionate about working with carers and lived experience, advocating that full recovery is possible.

Archana - Sydney facilitator

Archana Photo
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 - Eating disorders coordinator and Hobart support group facilitator

Caitlin facilitates Hobart recovery and carer support groups.

Caitlin is our Hobart facilitator and 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 - Hobart facilitator

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. 

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