(02) 6620 1800 [email protected]
Request for Proposal – Mental Health Services for Older People Affected by Social Isolation

Request for Proposal – Mental Health Services for Older People Affected by Social Isolation

The Request for Proposal focuses on older people with increased risk of mental ill health due to greater social isolation because of social distancing restrictions and Covid risk, please find details of the Request for Proposals on Tenderlink.

We invite community aged care and mental health services to please circulate this information through your networks particularly those who are working with older people living independently in the community.

Summary: Request for Proposal Mental Health services for older persons affected by social isolation

 TenderLink Ref Number: NCPHN-950800

Type of Notice: Request for Proposal

Region: New South Wales

Contract Value: Not Specified

Applications close at 5:00 p.m. NSW on 5/2/2021.

Healthy North Coast (HNC) trading as North Coast Primary Health Network (NCPHN) is one of 31 Primary Health Networks established throughout Australia in 2015. We work alongside community members and health professionals to improve access to well-coordinated quality health care. Our aim is to work together to transform the healthcare system and reduce health inequities.

HNC is seeking proposals from suitably qualified and experienced organisations to deliver services to address social isolation, emerging mental health challenges and loneliness among the older community, who have been particularly impacted by social distancing requirements.

REGISTRATION: Request for Proposal (RFP) documents are to be obtained through the TenderLink portal.

ENQUIRIES: Enquiries should be directed via the TenderLink portal. HNC staff are unable to respond to enquiries in relation to the Request for Proposals.

SUBMISSIONS: Completed responses must be submitted via TenderLink. Respondents will receive a Successful Submission Receipt timed and dated upon completion. A notification of a successful document upload is not a confirmation of a Successful RFP Submission. Should assistance be required please use the online manual on the portal under Support/Online Manuals/Making a Submission or contact Tenderlink Customer Support on 1800 233 533.

Better Chances Forum 2020 wrap up

Better Chances Forum 2020 wrap up

(Cover image from BCF member Richard Clark- representing the importance of connecting on country)

The Better Chances Forum (BCF) brings together people from organisations and groups across the Northern Rivers region of NSW to support better chances for Children and Young People and their families.

The Northern Rivers Better Chances Forum met on Wednesday 25 November, at Ballina Surf Club to connect, share and reflect.  

Attendees were asked to reflect on ‘What was important in your/our practice to hold Children, Young People and families well in 2020? Considering, what changed, why and what did this mean?’ Also, ‘How you intend to work in 2021?’ –

Themes presented on the day 


  • In 2020 many saw increased engagement and connection with families and the sector. 
  • We will continue to create space and time for connection. As a sector we value caring for each other. Create spaces to heal, connect, grow, flourish  

Collaborate with community  

  • We missed being out in community 
  • 2021 focus on being out in the community – learning with community and with other services. Community ownership of activities and connection to community. (see image below from BCF member) 

Being intentional about how we work and why we are doing what we are doing- what is the best way, for our Children, young people and families, to deliver our work 

  • Challenge our assumptions – consider, ask and offer options. Eg, Online options 
  • No wrong door – if someone rings take the call and follow up.  

Flexible, adaptive, creative- especially in Education  

  • 2020 highlighted gaps in the system, especially for vulnerable families, regular welfare checks with families were required- we need to balance red tape and wellness.  
  • We can think differently to get the same job done – organisations trusted staff to connect directly with families – we were able to balance- some systems will not continue to have this flexibility. 
  • In 2021 flexibility can be supported by linking with other BCF members who have flexibility in how they can support children, young people and families.   
  • We need to understand and build on the skills and strengths across the sector, ideas around a BCF skills map/audit  
  • Continue to be adaptive to change. Use more creative thinking and innovation to push boundaries and find solutions  

Intentional about the wellbeing of each other 

  • Checking in with staff – be present – find out regularly how staff and families are going.  
  • Intentional practice in managing staff regarding wellbeing. COVID provided opportunities to connect across the region – not consistently happening pre-COVID. By supporting wellbeing among staff we see good work with children, young people and families – drives good performance.  
  • Acknowledge our personal and professional presence in our work. We need time to manage the different priorities we all have- focus on us as part of the community.  

BCF intend to communicate these themes to the wider community sector and include these in our developing BCF shared practice framework.    

For more information about Better Chances Forum visit our website   

Community fishing net – the net symbolises community working together different colours symbolise different groups, but we all work/hunt/gather for the one community we are trying to all feed. During COVID, time and place became a significant part of providing appropriate support professionally and personally as we supported each other during a pandemic (Image from BCF member Kayeleen Brown) 

New service for families to begin in 2021

New service for families to begin in 2021

Social Futures has announced that is has secured a three-year contract with the NSW Government to deliver a new service, Family Connect and Support,  on the Far North Coast.  Social Futures will also be delivering the service in partnership with Pathfinders on the Mid North Coast.

The new program will replace the Family Referral Service and follows reform in the sector, with responsibility for the service being transferred from NSW Health to the Department of Communities and justice.

Social Futures CEO Tony Davies has welcomed the development. “It’s great that we get to continue to support families in this region,” he said, “It’s a recognition of the exceptional work we’ve done in the State’s North and the reputation we’ve built with the families we’ve supported, the Government and other service providers.”

There will also be some changes to the services offered, including additional planning for priority populations such as Aboriginal families, families with children aged from 0 to 5, and children and young people affected by mental illness.

Davies was also encouraged by the expansion of services the government has outlined and Social Futures will be able to deliver.

“There are some new features in the agreement that will help us be more flexible in responding to large scale emergencies and supporting isolated families and communities.  The introduction of Family Group Conferencing is a great idea and one that we will be putting into practice here and in the Mid-North Coast”.

Full details of the changes announced by the government and a list of regional providers can be found here: https://www.facs.nsw.gov.au/families/support-programs/all-families/family-connect-and-support

NSW Government’s Workforce Survey: Identifying Problematic and Harmful Sexual Behaviours in Children and Young People

NSW Government’s Workforce Survey: Identifying Problematic and Harmful Sexual Behaviours in Children and Young People

The NSW Government wants to hear from you and other frontline workers or managers of frontline workers about how NSW can improve prevention, early intervention and specialist responses to children and young people with problematic and harmful sexual behaviours.

You are well placed to assist the government in understanding what information and resources would be helpful for the workforce. Your participation in the survey will help identify service gaps, challenges and importantly, promising practices and initiatives already in place.

Please click on this link to complete the survey.

You can save the survey if you haven’t finished and can come back to it at another time. The last date you can do the survey is 18 December 2020.

You can find out more about the survey by reading the attached information sheet.

The survey is being conducted by ARTD Consultants in partnership with NSW Health, Department of Education, Department of Communities and Justice and NSW Police Force. You can contact Jack Cassidy from ARTD should you require assistance completing the survey via [email protected]

Participation in this survey is voluntary and there are no implications for refusing or withdrawing your participation or choosing to only answer some of the survey questions. By completing the survey you are consenting for your responses to be analysed as part of a report on the findings.

Thank you for agreeing to be part of this important initiative.

Do you have an Advanced Care Directive?

Do you have an Advanced Care Directive?

  • Advance care planning is your instructions to family and doctor about what you want to happen at end of life
  • It comprises: appointing a substitute decision-maker and completing an Advance Care Directive.
  • Advance Care Directives differ between states and territories. Follow the link to see what you need for the State or Territory you live.

Many families benefit from taking the time to develop an advance care plan. Take time while you’re healthy to plan ahead. It’s important for people who are older and are frail, or people who have a chronic illness, multiple diseases, an early cognitive impairment, or are approaching their end of life. An Advance Care Directive only goes into effect if you are unable make decisions for yourself. If that time ever comes, your Advance Care Directive will guide your loved ones and doctors so that they can make decisions that respect your values and preferences.

An Advance Care Directive is a written record of your preferences for future care. The Directive can record your values, life goals and preferred outcomes, or directions about care and treatments. Advance Care Directives can also formally appoint a substitute decision-maker. It is recommended you discuss your directive document with your doctor. You do not require a lawyer to complete it.

Free personalised advance care planning advice is available from Advance Care Planning Australia 9am-5pm (AEST) Monday to Friday. Call 1300 208 582 or visit advancecareplanning.org.au


Parkinson’s Specialist Nursing Service for Northern NSW

Parkinson’s Specialist Nursing Service for Northern NSW

Northern NSW Local Health District (NNSWLHD) now has a new Parkinson’s Clinical Nurse Consultant. The position is co-funded by Parkinson’s NSW will support people with Parkinson’s, their families and carers who reside in the Tweed, Byron and Ballina. Support will be offered at outpatient clinics, home visits and hospitals.

Parkinson’s disease is the second-most common neurological condition in Australia. The number of Australians affected is expected to increase as the population ages. People living with Parkinson’s have more frequent hospital admissions and until now has had limited care and support in the community.

The first referrals to the service will be taken in December. Please contact the service on (02) 6620 6361 for more information or to make a referral.

Carer Gateway Holiday Schedule

Carer Gateway Holiday Schedule

For many carers the Christmas and New Year period may be a time of additional stress. If you are a carer and could use some support you can access Carer Gateway support services over the holidays, aside from public holidays.

Carer Gateway offers a range of free support services for carers including carer support planning, counselling, peer support, carer directed support packages, planned and emergency respite services.

These services are free for anyone caring for a family member or friend who is living with a disability, a long term medical condition, mental illness, alcohol or drug dependency or someone who is frail due to age.

Carer Gateway provides practical information and advice and connects carers with local services in their area. Carers can access these services by calling 1800 422 737 or visiting www.carergateway.gov.au 

Carer Gateway is operating 8am – 5pm over the Christmas and New Year period, other than on public holidays.

Carers NSW is the dedicated Carer Gateway Service Provider across Hunter New England, Central Coast and the North Coast of NSW, and will provide services to carers in this region.

To keep up to date with Carers NSW connect with us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

ACOSS Media Release: Fundraising reform a welcome first step

ACOSS Media Release: Fundraising reform a welcome first step

The Australian Council of Social Service says that the agreement signed by federal, state and territory treasurers to reform charitable fundraising regulation and create a cross-border registration scheme is a welcome first step towards the ultimate goal of comprehensive reform of Australia’s outdated fundraising regulations.

ACOSS CEO Dr Cassandra Goldie said:
“ACOSS welcomes this first step towards reforming Australia’s outdated and inconsistent fundraising laws. This reform will ensure that charities that fundraise nationally do not have to register in multiple jurisdictions.

“Substantial reform to fundraising regulation has been recommended by multiple reviews, inquiries and a royal commission. Despite this welcome proposal, there is still significant work to do to comprehensively reform the hodgepodge of fundraising laws that apply to charities across Australia.

“We also welcome the fact that fundraising reform remains on the agenda for the National Emergency Management Ministers Meeting stemming from the National Federation Reform Council. We look forward to working with these ministers to achieve genuine, comprehensive reform of the current fundraising laws.

“It’s crucial community sector charities are supported in their important work. Community sector services are vital at all times but especially in crisis. The community service sector provides support to people when they need it most, when they’re facing homelessness, escaping domestic violence or dealing with mental health issues. These services have been crucial in the health and economic crisis.”

Increase for Medicare Chronic Disease Management (CDM) for Aged Care.

Increase for Medicare Chronic Disease Management (CDM) for Aged Care.

The Federal Government has funded additional Allied Health Services including physiotherapy, occupational therapy and exercise physiology that are now available for Aged Care residents. Those who are eligible, supports include an additional five annual sessions, transport and one allied health assessment per year to aged care residents. More information can be found in the link


Reference link https://ahpa.com.au/news-events/australian-government-introduces-new-residential-aged-care-covid-19-measures-to-increase-allied-health-access/