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29 January 2016

Hi Carers Victoria Supporter

Welcome to the first issue of Voice for 2016.
We return from our break refreshed and eager to get back to the work of representing the concerns of carers in Victoria.

The festive season isn’t over yet with Carers Victoria involved in the LGBTI Midsumma Festival in Melbourne in January. We’d love to see carers join us at the Pride March on 31 January. Please see below for details.
And we are proud to share that Carers Victoria member Despina Havelas (pictured right) was this week awarded the Brimbank Council Australia Day Citizen of the Year for her advocacy and support of families with children with Autism through her group Autism Angels.
Despina Havelas pictured right.
Carers Victoria congratulations Despina on this much deserved recognition of her tireless work for her community.

We wish all of our readers all the best for the new year ahead. 

Carers Victoria News
Pre-Budget Submission Priorities
Carers Victoria has delivered our Pre-Budget Submission to the Victorian Government. It is our strong recommendation that to address the challenges carers face we presented the following priorities to the Victorian Government:

Priority 1: Development of a whole-of-government state-wide Victorian Carer Strategy
Priority 2: Ongoing investment in carer identification, tailored information and advocacy
Priority 3: Continued support of carer specific services and programs

You can read our Pre-Budget Submission here. We invite all feedback either via our website or through email to

Midsumma Festival

Carer’s Victoria is proud to participate in the Midsumma Festival again this year (17 January – 7 February 2016). A celebration of Melbourne’s LGBTIQ community, the Midsumma Festival has a terrific program of events, exhibitions, forums and other activities. Staff ran a stall at Carnival Day in the Alexandra Gardens and will be joined by members , family and friends to participate in the annual Pride March this Sunday.

Pride March – Sunday 31 January 2016
Carers Victoria is participating in the Pride March on Sunday 31 January, 2pm – 5pm (assemble from 1.30pm at Albert Park, Cnr Lakeside Drive and Fitzroy Street, St. Kilda).

All carers and their families are welcome to join Carers Victoria staff. The Pride March takes about 2.5 hours, is family friendly and an amazing experience for all. The day finishes with performances, food stalls and picnics on the foreshore at Catani Gardens. 
2016 Mingle Appeal
The 2015 Mingle events (Mingles) were a huge success, with over 1200 carers coming together across Victoria to unwind and enjoy a fun filled day of entertainment and activities with other carers. 

Planning for the 2016 Program has already begun and thanks to the generous support of donors who have donated to the 2016 Mingle Campaign we are well on our way to reaching our goal of hosting 10 Mingle events.

There is still time to donate to the Campaign and help make it possible for more carers to attend Mingles this year. Simply call us on 1800 242 636 or visit Thank you for your support.

The Big West Festival: Carers artwork ‘Who Carers!’

Carers Victoria helped celebrate the biennial Big West Festival’s 10th Anniversary late last November. The Festival is Melbourne’s western suburbs’ biggest community-based arts and cultural festival with a history of engaging local, national and international artists.
Carers created artwork based on the Festival’s theme ‘The Inner And Outer World Of The House’ and their individual experiences as carers, naming the collective artwork ‘Who Carers!’
The carers explored a range of mediums and creative approaches in developing their artwork, selecting a piece they had produced to be enlarged and transformed in to a paste-up. The paste-ups were collectively showcased on the brick wall on the corner of Nicholson and Irving Streets in Footscray. The featured on the northern side of the busy thoroughfare, attracting a lot of foot traffic and slow moving cars along the road way. 
Information Roadshow
Carers are encouraged to attend our state-wide information roadshow to build on their knowledge about the roll out of the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) and Aged Care reforms, including Consumer Directed Care. The free events are an opportunity to hear from our CEO Caroline Mulcahy, General Manager of Carer and Community Services Kate Johnson and also a representative from the National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA).

The roadshow starts in Traralgon on Wednesday 17 February. 

All questions can be emailed to or you can call 1800 242 636.  

Education and Training Workshop and Program Overview
Carers Victoria offers carer workshops and educational programs to help carers enhance their knowledge about how to best support their own health and wellbeing, and that of the person they care for.
See our upcoming Education workshops here or browse our new 2016 Carer Support Group education workshop and program overview here to book in a session.
Caring Differently – Better Questions Workshop
A NEW Workshop.
The Caring Differently – Better Questions Workshop offers highly effective communication strategies and practical tips that will enable carers to enhance their communication skills. This can lead to better outcomes for the person who is receiving care as well as improved communication, relationships and confidence in other areas of the carers life. 
Counselling Sessions 2016 
Carers Victoria's counselling team will be running the following group counselling sessions this year.

Considering Residential Care, Castlemaine 
This is a 5-day program and will commence on Thursday 25 February in Castlemaine.

Sharing the Care, Bentleigh
This is a 3-day program for those with someone in residential care and commences on Tuesday 15 March in Bentleigh.

New Horizons, Bentleigh
This is a 3-day program for bereaved carers and commences on Monday 4 April in Bentleigh.

Group Counselling Sessions, Footscray 
Group counselling sessions are available for people with similar caring experiences. These are held in a safe and confidential environment, facilitated by counsellors. 

Carers of People with Mental Issues – Group Counselling Sessions 
This is a 6-session program beginning on Wednesday 17 February 2016. 

Carers Of Frail Aged/Dementia – Group Counselling Sessions 
This is a 6-session program beginning on Friday 19 February.
Parents of Children with a Disability – Group Counselling Sessions
This is a 6 session program beginning on Thursday 21 April.

For more information and bookings please call our Advisory Line on 1800 242 636 and ask to speak to our counselling team. 
Midsumma Festival: Outing Disability
Outing Disability is an innovative project aimed at increasing awareness of LGBTIQ people with disability. It is a photographic exhibition developed by Family Planning NSW in partnership with photographer Belinda Mason.
The exhibition will be open to the public at Footscray Library from 29 January to 4 February as part of Midsumma 2016. A conversation and Q&A will be held at 4pm on the last day of the exhibition.
This is a free community event.
RSVP for the conversation and Q&A session.
Out of the Woods: Musical Theatre
People with disabilities and mental health issues and their carers who live in Hobsons Bay are invited to participate in and learn about musical theatre.
The program takes place on Mondays during school terms (starting Monday 1 February) from 10am to 12pm at the Laverton Community Hub.
People of all abilities are welcome.
Cost: $5 per session
Contact Myf Powell for more info: 0400 508 653,
Hearts in Mind Wellbeing Programs
Hearts in Mind offers innovative wellbeing programs for mothers of children with autism, disability or other long-term needs.

Replenish your energy stores to reduce anxiety and stress and increase resilience through occasional and weekly sessions at Reservoir Neighbourhood House, including support and information, a nine-week mindfulness meditation course and creative workshops.
Melton: Sunrise Group for women who are carers
Women who are carers for someone living with a physical disability, intellectual disability, or a mental or chronic health condition are invited to join a free support group that meets fortnightly in Melton. Make new friends, have fun and feel more connected. Women of all ages are welcome.
For more info, contact Lauren at Women’s Health West on 9689 9588 or
'Having A Say' Conference
VALID’s 'Having a Say Conference' is on again at the Deakin University Waterfront Campus in Geelong between 10–12 February. The conference is for people with a disability and provides them with opportunities to meet, participate in discussion and celebrate. It includes the Our Choice Expo, Art Competition and a Red Faces event.

The Expo aims to empower people with disabilities, their families/carers and workers about the choices and options available through the NDIS for current and future participants. For more information about how to get involved and more, go to the VALID website
New LGBTI Website Launch
Touchbase is a new national website aiming to provide comprehensive information to assist LGBTI communities manage their health and wellbeing. 
University of Tasmania Patients’ Rights online course
The University of Tasmania is running a free online community outreach unit. The Patients' Rights course aims to develop knowledge of the Australian healthcare system with a focus on the legal and ethical aspects of patient rights, including access, participation, respect, privacy, and safety. Explore aspects of patient rights and apply these to healthcare situations in a practical way, as healthcare professionals and providers, carers and consumers.
The Patients' Rights course is specifically designed to provide skills to better navigate interactions with the healthcare system.
To enrol or for more information, please click here. If you have any questions please call Nathan Savage on 03 6226 8526.
Get Involved
City of Stonnington Carer Support Forum
The City of Stonnington Access and Inclusion unit is hoping to host a carer support forum this year, to address the barriers and challenges faced by people caring for someone with disability. They would like this to be guided by carers in the community, and be developed with their priorities, goals and challenges in mind. To do this the unit has developed a short (5–10 minutes) survey to guide the development of the forum. 
Calling Arabic, Croatian and Hindi speaking carers
The Multicultural Centre for Women’s Health has launched a project called ‘Dealing with it myself’, which will support working carers from five migrant and refugee communities, including the Indian community. They are currently organising interviews for carers to share their stories and experiences so that they may help support others in a similar situation. All discussions and interviews will be confidential.
Please call Rosi Aryal on 94180919, or email her on
Caring Community News

Beach accessibility in the western suburbs

A recent article in The Age highlighted a couple of initiatives from Melbourne's western suburbs to provide people with disabilities access to the beach.

Beach matting on Williamstown Beach gives people on wheelchairs a route to the water, while Altona Beach provides a beach wheelchair, with wide tyres that can move over the sand.

Both accessible features are available via the Surf Life Saving Clubs during patrol hours between 12pm and 5.30pm, Saturday and Sunday and are available until Sunday 27 March.
Victoria Police Release Equality is Not the Same... Year Two Report
In late December Victoria Police released its Equality is not the same... report, which is the second report from a three-year action plan. The action plan aims to establish a clear direction for Victoria Police to strengthen community trust and confidence following settlement of litigation in the Federal Court of Australia alleging the existence of the practice of racial profiling within Victoria Police in February 2013.

Carers Victoria represented carers on both the Disability Portfolio Reference Group and the Seniors Portfolio Reference Group.

This second report, as well as its first iteration, can be found on the Victoria Police website
Curious Treasure Colouring Book
A Bendigo artist and designer, Jacqui Lynch, has developed a colouring book for carers to generate mindfulness and help with de-stressing. ‘Curious Treasure: A treasure trove of unexpected delights’ is filled with 30 nature-based images to help people relax and enter into a meditative mood while enjoying the growing popularity of colouring in.
Media Watch
Residential aged care: how can I afford it?
The Sydney Morning Herald, 26 January 2016
Disabled children shut out of private schools
The Age, 20 January 2016
How to have a conversation about aged care
The Sydney Morning Herald, 20 January 2016
Transgender children, the law, and a boy born in the skin of a girl
The Guardian, 19 January 2016
Finding respite care, “it’s all about trust”
Aged Care Report Card, 19 January 2016
Run for the kids has extra meaning for Jackson family
The Herald Sun, 13 January 2016

Win a double pass to the see the film Brooklyn

We have five double passes to the new film written by Nick Hornby, based on a book by Colm Toibin, and starring Saoirse Ronan.

BROOKLYN tells the profoundly moving story of a young woman Eilis Lacey (Academy Award nominee, Saoirse Ronan). Lured by the promise of America, Eilis departs Ireland and the comfort of her mother’s home for the shores of New York City where, unlike home, she has the opportunity for work and for a future – and love, in the form of Italian-American Tony (Emory Cohen). When a family tragedy takes her from Brooklyn back to Ireland, she finds herself absorbed into her old community, but now with eligible Jim (Domhnall Gleeson) courting her. As she repeatedly postpones her return to America, Eilis finds herself confronting a terrible dilemma – a heart-breaking choice between two lives, two men and two countries.

In Australian cinemas nationally FEBRUARY 11.

Courtesy of our friends at ABCG Publicity and Transmission Films, the first five people to email their name and postal address to by Friday 5 February will win a double pass to see the film. 
Team Vision Super Ride the 30th Annual Murray to Moyne to Raise Funds for Carers Victoria
In 2015, the Vision Super team rode in the 300km Murray to Moyne cycling relay raising $30,000. They generously donated the proceeds to Carers Victoria and the Royal District Nursing Services.

The Vision Super team will join 1500 riders to participate in this year’s Murray to Moyne relay (2–3 April 2016). Vision Super has once again pledged to donate money raised from the ride to Carers Victoria and this year, to the Snowdome Foundation.
Together we can help the Vision Super team reach and even exceed the money raised last year.

If you would like to support the Vision Super team raise funds for carers living in Victoria, enter your details on the online form and from the Team drop-down menu, select 360: VISION SUPER (Carers Victoria). Complete the form by making a donation. 
  Carers Victoria Voice
Carers Victoria
Level 1, 37 Albert Street, Footscray 3011
Phone: (03) 9396 9500
Carer Advisory Line: 1800 242 636

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