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COVID-19 vaccination resources

Please see below links to Easy Read COVID-19 vaccination resources now available: Fact sheet about the third dose; Fact sheet about booster doses; The difference between the third dose and a booster dose; COVID-19 vaccination consent form. These resources can also be accessed alongside other COVID-19 vaccination Easy Read resources. Please also see links to a video produced by the Council for Intellectual Disability, in partnership with the Department of Health, around COVID Vaccination Stories on YouTube and Facebook.

COVID-19 Vaccine Provider Alert – 1 December 2021

The Department of Health has issued its next COVID-19 vaccination – Disability Provider Alert 1 December 2021. In this update you will find a new easy read consent form, easy reads about booster and third doses, booster in-reach rollout, and current vaccination hubs. This provider alert along with other resources and information about the COVID-19 vaccine rollout is available from a dedicated web page for disability service providers on the Department of Health website.


Are you prepared for thunderstorm asthma events?

Hospitals are experiencing significant demand due to COVID-19, so it’s important for community members to stay well.

October through December is thunderstorm asthma season. If your patients have asthma or hay fever (or have had it in the past), now is the time to be ready, so you can manage any symptoms and stay out of hospital.

Community members can protect themselves and those in their care by following these simple steps:

  • Monitor the epidemic thunderstorm asthma risk forecast on the VicEmergency app.
  • Don’t be outdoors in a storm, especially the winds that come before them.
  • Take preventative medication as directed, even when they’re symptom free.
  • Carry relievers and know how to manage an asthma attack. Follow their asthma action plan or use asthma first aid.
  • If you or your loved one develops mild asthma symptoms, call NURSE-ON-CALL (1300 60 60 24), see a local doctor, or speak with a pharmacist.
  • If their condition is urgent, not improving or getting worse, call triple zero (000) or attend hospital.

Supercare pharmacies are open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, with a free registered nursing service on-site from 6 pm to 10 pm, every day.

View English and multicultural resources relating to thunderstorm asthma to share with your patients.

With around half of all Australians experiencing mental illness in their lifetime, we want to help reduce inequities related to poor mental wellbeing.

We know that it’s important to intervene early to improve long term outcomes, so we’re working to help improve the mental wellbeing of young Victorians aged 12-25 years by helping them feel more connected to their communities.

Another key focus area is creating a more equitable society for people of all genders, including promoting healthy masculinities and tackling harmful gender stereotypes for young men and boys aged 12-25 years.

We see mental wellbeing as the embodiment of social and emotional wellbeing – not merely the absence of mental illness. Mental wellbeing is a dynamic state in which people are able to develop their potential, work productively and creatively, build positive and respectful relationships with others, and meaningfully contribute to the community.

Click on link below for more information:


Your Mental Health

Hello! Sana from ABC Radio National’s podcast All in the Mind here. Motherhood is many things: a joy, a slog, an exercise in extreme patience. For some, it’s a major test of their mental health.

Soon after giving birth, Gabrielle Micallef experienced postpartum psychosis – an extremely rare illness, but a debilitating one.

She’s a psychologist but even she’d never heard of it, until her diagnosis.
So, with Mother’s Day upon us, we’re making motherhood the focus of this month’s mental health newsletter.

It also happens to be my very first Mother’s Day as a mum (sleep, I miss you).
But you don’t have be a parent to find something of interest in the stories below.

Maybe you have a difficult relationship with your mum – our episode on the damage done by emotionally immature parents explores how to heal and establish boundaries.

Maybe you’re struggling with stress and finding balance — check out ABC Everyday’s piece on energy accounting, and how it can help.

Or maybe you’re a person of colour and want to make sure your child feels comfortable in their own skin – check out our episode on what dolls reveal about race. It features mum Dr Toni Sturdivant, who went to incredible lengths to help her daughter feel proud to be black.

And there’s more on Gabrielle Micallef’s brush with postpartum psychosis too.

Happy listening/reading! Catch you next time.


All in the Mind is an exploration of the mental: the mind, brain and behaviour — everything from addiction to artificial intelligence.

It airs on Sundays at 12.30pm and is repeated on Tuesdays at 1.30pm and Fridays at 2am on RN.

Listen free on your mobile device on the ABC Listen appApple PodcastsGoogle Podcasts or your favourite podcast app.

And to read more of the ABC’s mental health coverage, head to our dedicated pageIt would be fantastic if you could share information about Connecting Up with the not for profits council works with.

I’ve attached a flyer that summarises what we’re about. Thanks so much for circulating it.

I’ve also attached our latest eNewsletter to our NFP members.

We can supply you with fully refurbished hardware eg smartphones, laptops, desktops, networking equipment and much more.

Please let me know what you’re interested in, the quantity and budget, and I’ll put together some options to choose from.

Here’s a link to our product catalogue

Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions, or would like to discuss further.

Thanks and best wishes,

Robert Kalka
Business Development Manager
p: 0415 441 424


For more information click on the link below:

Beyond Blue Support Service

Support. Advice. Action

Beyond Blue fact-checks anxiety and depression treatments

29 Jun 2020

Beyond Blue has released two new booklets designed to help people separate fact from fiction about what really works for managing anxiety and depression.

Two free Beyond Blue online booklets – A guide to what works for anxiety and A guide to what works for depression – review and rate the scientific evidence available for 440 psychological, medical and complimentary approaches used to treat anxiety and depression.

If you live in the City of Port Phillip and would like some help

City of Port Phillip Council is continuing to support the community, particularly our most vulnerable members, during the COVID-19 outbreak by continuing to provide assistance and key services including:

  • aged care and disability services
  • social support
  • food services.
  • medicine services
  • emergency and relief packages

 Ask Izzy

You can access the website via the link below:

MAY 2020   l   VOL 14


The official monthly newsletter curated by our top staff

Hello everyone

We hope you are all well and staying safe.  We are still providing our remote technical support and training at reduced rates whilst in isolation.

For our Home clients, whilst you are in isolation it is a good time to clean up and synchronise your devices, perform a security check and tune up, migrate to the cloud, review your phone and internet plans, or create photo books!  We can help you with all of this remotely, so now is a good time to get this done and take advantage of our reduced rates.

For our Small Business Clients, now is a good time to also perform a security audit, review IT systems to ensure efficiency, create a regular security maintenance plan for your business, transform your digital space, upgrade your equipment for greater performance, and review your phone and internet plans – We saved one of our clients $7,000 per annum doing a phone and internet review.  You can also take advantage of our reduced remote support rates to get this work done.

In the meantime there are plenty of extra curricula activities for all to take part in whilst in isolation.  Here are few we love and wish to share with you to break the ‘groundhog day’ blues.


Here are a sample of the many free activities and places you can visit online from the comfort of your own home.  Just click on the names underlined below to open each website. You can access the complete newsletter via the link below:

JUNE 2020   l   VOL 15


Hello everyone

We are pleased to announce that we are able to loan a number of iPads and laptops for FREE to seniors who do not have a device over the next six months, in order to help them stay connected with their family, friends, community and events.

If you have a parent, grandparent, neighbour or friend who qualifies and would benefit from having a free device with internet for 3-6 months, please email us on or call our office on 03 9596 4547.

In the meantime please find below some helpful tips we have put together for you.

STORING YOUR PASSWORDS – a tip for everyone!

We highly recommend that you have:

  • strong passwords of at least 8 characters using a combination of upper case, lower case, numbers and symbols,
  • different passwords for different accounts,
  • change them regularly,
  • where possible enforce 2-step verification – especially for your banking, shopping, email and social media accounts, and
  • store your passwords in a safe place.

We know this takes time and you are probably wondering where you should store your passwords.  Please do not store your passwords in a word document or notes or other file on your devices.

Either do this the old fashioned way – have them written down in an address book.  Write the passwords in pencil so you can change them easily when you regularly change your passwords, and store this address book in a safe and secure place away from your devices.

Or use a cloud password keeper such as LastPass, 1password or the password keeper in your antivirus program if your antivirus program provides this feature.  If you do use a cloud password keeper, make sure it provides the 2-step verification feature to access all of your passwords.

2-step means when you enter your password, a code is sent to your mobile phone.  This code needs to be entered into the log in screen on your device in order to access all of your passwords.  If 2-step is on, you need the password and your mobile phone to access your accounts.
You can access the complete newsletter via the link below:


ABC NEWS Healthy foods can help prevent and treat depression


Worldwide, more than 300 million people live with depression.

Without effective treatment, the condition can make it difficult to work and maintain relationships with family and friends.

Depression can cause sleep problems, difficulty concentrating, and a lack of interest in activities that are usually pleasurable. At its most extreme, it can lead to suicide.

Depression has long been treated with medication and talking therapies — and they’re not going anywhere just yet. But we’re beginning to understand that increasing how much exercise we get and switching to a healthy diet can also play an important role in treating — and even preventing — depression.

So what should you eat more of, and avoid, for the sake of your mood?

Ditch junk food

Research suggests that while healthy diets can reduce the risk or severity of depression, unhealthy diets may increase the risk.

Of course, we all indulge from time to time but unhealthy diets are those that contain lots of foods that are high in energy (kilojoules) and low on nutrition. This means too much of the foods we should limit:

  • processed and takeaway foods
  • processed meats
  • fried food
  • butter
  • salt
  • potatoes
  • refined grains, such as those in white bread, pasta, cakes and pastries
  • sugary drinks and snacks.

The average Australian consumes 19 serves of junk food a week, and far fewer serves of fibre-rich fresh food and wholegrains than recommended. This leaves us overfed, undernourished and mentally worse off.

By Megan Lee

ABC Your Mental Health

Pandemic. Disaster. Recession. Protests. Isolation. Loss. Anxiety.

Over the last six months many of us have had our lives change in ways we would never have imagined might be possible. Among those hit hardest have been young people, vulnerable communities and those living alone.

But despite all these difficulties, there are remarkable moments that offer hope. The ABC has heard from people helping each other, communities coming together and individuals learning to cope with a ‘new normal’.

Over the next six weeks, we’ll bring you these stories. We want to help you feel connected, inspired and supported.

We’re also going to share podcasts, videos and other content that may help you manage your own mental health and support those in your life who are struggling.

Let’s get started.

ABC Your Mental Health

Your brain on nature

Many of us find spending time in the great outdoors can be calming, and studies have shown that connecting with the natural world can help improve your mood.

It turns out you don’t need to get out on a day-long bush walk to get your nature hit. Simple interactions with nature – like heading to the park, looking out a garden or having indoor plants in your home – have been found to be good for your mental health.

Sarah was bushwalking with friends when she had a light bulb moment, realising that nature could help her as she recovered from a recent brain injury.

“I discovered that spending time in the natural environment also lifted the depression and anxiety triggered by being away from work for so long, with no idea when I would return.”

The anxious shrink

Dr Mark Cross understands anxiety viscerally. Not only is he a psychiatrist, he’s also lived with the condition nearly all his life. And he’s made the decision to be open about his struggle – a rare move for a doctor. His latest book is called ‘Anxiety: Expert Advice from a Neurotic Shrink Who’s Lived With Anxiety All His Life’’.

Anxiety by Cross, Dr Mark, ABC Books

Expert Advice from a Neurotic Shrink Who’s Lived with Anxiety All His Life

You can access the complete newsletter via the link below:

ABC Your Mental Health

Starting a conversation about your mental health can be incredibly difficult.

Despite growing awareness of mental health issues, many of us still find it very difficult to share what’s happening for us.

When Emily started a relationship with her boyfriend, she knew she needed to be honest with him.

“I consider myself to be very open talking about experience with mental health, but at the same time if you meet someone and you want them to like you, it’s kind of scary disclosing things that are really vulnerable.”

She was nervous about opening up, but she found the that sharing her experiences brought them closer together and has allowed him to be supportive.

When and how to tell your new partner about your mental health

You can access the complete ABC Mental Health news via this link:

Brain Changer: The Good Mental Health Diet
by Felice Jacka

3.85  ·  Rating details ·  106 ratings  ·  11 reviews
‘This is a fascinating book, by a leading researcher, covering one of the most exciting areas of modern nutritional research – how what we eat impacts our gut and brain. The combination of personal stories and cutting edge science is a real winner.’ Michael Mosley

You feel how you eat.
We accept that the quality of our diet affects the health of our heart and liver. S

Psychiatric Times July 2020 Edition

Does Insomnia Predict the Onset of Mental Illness?

Does Insomnia Predict the Onset of Mental Illness?

July 11, 2020

Because insomnia is a syndrome marked by chronic sleep onset and/or continuity problems associated with impaired daytime functioning, it is important that clinicians screen for sleep issues in their patients.  You can access the Psychiatric Times via the link below:

Hoarding Home Solutions Newsletter 28 July 2020