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Stroke Awareness Week 2-8 August 2021Theme: Recover-Regain-Reclaim

Stroke Awareness Week 2-8 August 2021Theme: Recover-Regain-Reclaim

The Stroke Recovery Association of NSW are highlighting the issue of Stroke during the annual Stroke Awareness Week, which is being held 2nd to 8th August 2021, we are able to provide information for a display. The Association is able to provide information sheets, brochures, posters and balloons to you and your organisation to enhance your displays during this week. All of these are able to be provided to you free of charge, however, we have also enclosed a payment slip in the event that you are able to contribute a donation towards the cost of postage or to the work of the Association.

Please contact us to place your order by 1st July 2021. Orders can be emailed to [email protected], or sent via post (PO Box 3401, PUTNEY, NSW, 2112).

The Stroke Recovery Association is also hosting a conference on Wednesday 4 August 2021 at the Burwood RSL. Or, Live Stream the event free of charge.

Medicare rebate changes begin next month

Medicare rebate changes begin next month

Changes to Medicare rebates could mean you have to pay more for some surgeries. With over 900 changes being made, doctors are calling for clarity. Just weeks before the biggest changes to Medicare in decades, GP’s, the private health sector and consumers, are grappling to understand the huge number of changes recently announced. Connect readers have already contacted us, concerned about the implications of the changes.

At the centre of the issue is uncertainty about whether some patients will have to pay out-of-pocket costs, as more than 900 items on the Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS) will be amended, with changes applying to general surgery, orthopaedic surgery, and cardiac services. The MBS is the list of health services that the federal government subsidises through Medicare rebates.

As part of this overhaul, hundreds of procedures and services on that list will be changed.

The full story can be found on the link below

Medicare rebates 


Healthy Living and Ageing (Developing a Strategy)

Healthy Living and Ageing (Developing a Strategy)

More than 20% of the North Coast population are aged over 65 compared to 18.5% for NSW and 15.7% for Australia. Given this over-representation, and the high proportion with chronic conditions, Healthy Living and Ageing was chosen for the second regional strategy of the North Coast Collective.  It is expected those over 65 will easily reach 30% of our population in 10 years.

We cannot continue to work in the same way.  Health professionals need to partner with older people and their families to manage health and chronic illness. Non-disease-focused approaches are needed to support older people to age well.

Healthy North Coast has supported the North Coast Collective by leading a needs assessment of the aged population and conducting a literature review. Both of these have shown an explicit need to develop a regional Healthy Living and Ageing Strategy.

More details can be found in the link below:


State of the( Older) Nation Report via Zoom

State of the( Older) Nation Report via Zoom

This Thursday 24 June at 2pm (AEST) the COTA Federation will be launching the State of the (Older) Nation Report via zoom.

Register now to hear about the report.

In 2018 the COTA Federation released the first State of the (Older) Nation report. It was the first of its kind, looking at how Australia’s ageing population felt about a range of issues.

We’re hoping you’ll be able to join us for the launch of the 2021 Report. It shows that three years on, many older people are feeling worse about the world – 33% say things are getting worse for their generation, fewer people are doing adequate exercise and more than one in two can be classified as vulnerable.

The discussion will be hosted by Meagan Lawson (COTA NSW CEO) and the panel will include Prof Anne Edwards (Chair, COTA Federation), Sue Leitch (COTA TAS CEO), Russ Gluyas (ACON) and Edith Chen (COTA VIC Volunteer).

Register now to hear about the report, and have your questions addressed.

Free OPAN Webinars How to be an Everyday Advocate and Alternatives to Chemical Restraints

Free OPAN Webinars How to be an Everyday Advocate and Alternatives to Chemical Restraints

OPAN are offering their latest webinars including:

How to be an Everyday Advocate; which you can join on Thursday June 24 at 2pm.

To discuss the role of aged care advocacy in championing older people’s rights, empowering older people to self-advocate, and becomes everyday advocates in our own communities.

Register here: https://www.eventbrite.com.au/e/how-to-be-an-everyday-advocate-registration-158514028727


Alternatives to Chemical Restraint; Wednesday June 30 at 11:30am

OPAN is partnering with the Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission to bring you a live webinar about alternative therapies to chemical restraint.

Register your interest here: https://www.eventbrite.com.au/e/alternative-therapies-to-chemical-restraint-tickets-156185000541

24 hours to block the Robo-Employment Services Bill – ACOSS

24 hours to block the Robo-Employment Services Bill – ACOSS

ACOSS is calling for people to contact their senators about a reconsideration of the expanded automation suspensions of job seeker payments.

The proposed changes could expand automated suspensions of JobSeeker payments for people who are late sending in their job searches and force unemployed people to negotiate compliance requirements with a computer, delaying their first payment.

The bill could reinforce the automated suspension of JobSeeker payments for people who have trouble meeting their online requirements, leaving people with a dead phone battery away from missing their next payment – and in some cases becoming homeless. Many people face huge challenges in online systems, such as being unable to afford or access internet or to navigate new technology.

The bill would also force people to negotiate a online ‘Jobs Plan’ with a computer before they have access to social security payments, delaying the first payment for an average of 144,000 job-seekers each year, leaving them almost $500 worse off.

Concerningly, the bill weakens workplace protections, like health and safety standards, for people participating in employment programs like Work for the Dole. On top of this, it also weakens protections for single parents and people with disability against excessive work and requirements.

Can you call your Senators now and ask them to block the Bill?

Senators will vote on the bill tomorrow morning, which gives us just 24 hours to block it. If we can flood Senators’ offices with calls today, we can shore up enough Senate opposition to block the ‘Robo-Employment Services’ bill and prevent the devastating damage it could cause millions of people already struggling just to get by. 



Remove roadblocks to delivering much needed community services – ACOSS

Remove roadblocks to delivering much needed community services – ACOSS

Community Sector services call on Federal and State and Territory governments to address key roadblocks that restrict their ability to effectively help many people experiencing poverty and hardship.

New research conducted for ACOSS and the COSS Network by the Social Policy Research Centre at UNSW Sydney pulls together the experience of a range of community sector service providers and peak organisations to reveal that most community organisations providing government funded services struggle with severely inadequate funding and insecure contracts that result in lack of employment security for their staff and uncertainty of service provision for people experiencing hardship.

The report Valuing Australia’s community sector: Better contracting for capacity, sustainability and impact provides recommendations to improve the capacity of community organisations to do their important work.

ACOSS CEO Dr Cassandra Goldie said:

“The most important change governments can make that will provide job security for frontline workers and certainty for people needing services is longer contracts and funding agreements that cover the full cost of providing the service.

“Service providers reported their intense frustration that one or two year service contracts, and delays in contract renewals meant they had to reduce staffing and stop much needed services.

“This could be solved by providing at least 5 year contracts and funding certainty, instead of keeping service providers on tenterhooks about whether their funding would continue.

“Service providers also want more notice of changes to funding so they can prepare staff and clients if they need to close a service or transition it to another provider.

“With so many communities impacted by fire, floods and the pandemic, we’re also seeking more flexibility for services in communities impacted by natural disasters. They need to be able to redirect funding to meet agreed alternative services.

“We want to see the design and management of government programs place the people and communities who use them at the centre of their design and delivery.

“We also identified a need for governments to support sector diversity by providing funding to small, medium and large organisations working to address poverty, disadvantage and marginalisation. Small organisations currently face challenges applying for funds, succeeding in competitive processes, and engaging in complex contractual and reporting environments.

“Most importantly, we call for the removal of restrictions on using government funds for advocacy or law reform in funding contracts. We are strongly opposed to the current attempts to put in place additional regulations that could lead to further threats to the advocacy capacity of community organisations.”

The report was supported through a partnership with Bendigo Bank, whose commitment to strong communities has seen over $251 million invested in local communities since 1998.


Read the report at: https://www.acoss.org.au/australian-community-sector-survey/


Schools and community services connect through speed meeting event

Schools and community services connect through speed meeting event

Working Together -Tweed and Wollumbin

On Wednesday 16th June Better Chances Forum (BCF), in partnership with the Department of Education (DET) and Tweed Council hosted a unique workshop that brought together community services and schools and education providers in the Tweed-Wollumbin region.

When thinking about service linkage, referral pathways and collaboration in the region, one of the most common barriers is simply being too time poor to be able to find out what services are out there and to build relationships with those services.

So how could we help services and education staff overcome this? The answer was simple (and, not to mention, a lot of fun): speed dating.

‘Working Together’ was run as a service speed dating event. Community services set up stalls in a circle around the venue and when we began, schools and education providers had 5 minutes to connect with a community service before moving to the next. The event provided an efficient way for key people from the education sector to connect with a myriad of services in their region, all in the one go. We knew it would be a very high energy and fast moving activity, so to ensure that all attendees had the key information in one place, we compiled a Stall Holder Information Booklet that included information and contact details for all the stall holders in the room on the day. This booklet provided a central reference point for attendees and was something they could take home to continue using.

Due to the impacts of COVID, this was the first ‘Working Together’ event we were able to run in two years and it was a huge success. 100% of our attendees agreed that the workshop was well designed and engaging and 100% of our attendees learned new things and/or made new connections that will assist them to work more effectively together.

We’d like to thank the Department of Education and the Tweed Council for the effort put into co-hosting this event with us.

If you are interested in getting involved, we are hosting another Working Together event for the Lismore-Richmond region on 11th August 2021. We foresee it will be another sell-out event, so be sure to register your place here.

BCF is convened by Social Futures and funded by NSW Department of Communities and Justice. For more information about Better Chances Forum visit our website

Rekindling the Spirit

Rekindling the Spirit

Conversations in Domestic and Family Violence

Join us to hear guest speakers from service providers including:

ACON – DVCAS – Women’s Resource Centre and Community Members.

WHEN?     Tuesday 29 June 10.00am to 1.00pm

WHERE?   Lismore Regional Gallery

This is a free event that includes lunch and opportunities for networking and collaboration.

Let’s support each other in moving forward on this critically important issue.

For catering purposes please RSVP Peta-Lee on 02 6622 5534