Category Archives: Communication

Article from ProBono Newsletter 6 May 2021

Advocates perplexed over government’s independent assessments plan

Disability advocates say they are confused by the federal government’s messaging around independent assessments, after National Disability Insurance Scheme Minister Linda Reynolds confirmed the controversial reform will proceed in “some form” despite widespread opposition.

What’s the issue? Advocates say the government has been sending mixed messages about independent assessments (IAs) – a reform that would drastically change the process for determining NDIS eligibility. After swift backlash to the reform from disability groups, Minister Reynolds said two weeks ago that the government would pause its plan to introduce IAs. While this made disability groups hopeful the policy could be dumped, Reynolds told Senate Estimates on Monday that the introduction of IAs were still set to go ahead. Disability advocates are now in the dark about exactly when and how IAs will be rolled out. They are calling for the government to reset relations with the sector and ensure people with disability are put at the centre of NDIS decision-making.

Tandem – a survey for carers 6 May 2021

Dear family ambassadors,

I hope you can catch some of sun out there today.

You might have seen our recent eNews with our survey Act for an inclusive mental health and wellbeing system’. As the finalisation of the new Mental Health and Wellbeing Act approaches it’s important, we as families and supporters have our say. We would greatly appreciate your thoughts and feedback as the voice of our members is so valuable in the work that we do. It’s lengthy however, only answer what you feel comfortable with. Thanks for your continued effort and commitment to a more compassionate family inclusive mental health system.  

Kind regards,

Jennette Coffey
Policy and Project Officer

Tandem Inc.
Level 1, 37 Mollison Street Abbotsford Victoria 3067
P 8803 5555 F 8803 5599

1800 314 325  Tandem Support and Referral Line

Sign up to Tandem’s eNews to get regular mental health updates

Tandem eNews special edition 4 May 2021

Dear members and supporters,

Act for an inclusive mental health and wellbeing system

In 2019, Tandem made a submission to the Royal Commission into Victoria’s Mental Health System. We produced this based on extensive consultation with you, our members.
We learnt that you support a mental health system that is Safe, Inclusive, Fair and Funded.
We now have the final Royal Commission report in our hands. We can hear your voices resonating throughout the 3000 pages informing the recommendations.
The final report highlights the need for a system that is safe and inclusive for family, carers and supporters. We now need to ensure that the reforms implemented reflect the intentions of the report.

We need to ask for your help again.

Please complete this survey by end of Monday 10th May to inform the implementation of:

  • Recommendation 42: A new Mental Health and Wellbeing Act
  • Recommendation 44: A new Mental Health and Wellbeing Commission
  • Recommendation 54: Towards the elimination of seclusion and restraint
  • Recommendation 61: Sharing mental health and wellbeing

    Information In this eNews edition

      • Introduction: Act for an inclusive mental health & wellbeing system
      • Tandem Members Meeting – Thursday June 10
      • COVID-19 Mental Health Packages no longer available
      • Tandem Support & Referral Line
      • Other Mental Health Helplines and Webchats

    Thank you for your ongoing support. We will keep you informed of any consultation opportunities that arise.

    To join the Tandem register to take part in working groups and consultations, contact us at can access the complete newsletter via the link below:

Alfred Health Carer Services Free Getaway Tours for Carers

Free Getaway Tours for Carers

We are pleased to present  Active Getways for Carers. These offerings will be a chance to take a break from your caring role and an opportunity to re-charge and try something new.

We have limited places available.

Important Information:

You must be able to independently make your own way to the pickup and drop off points.

You are responsible for determining if the activities included on the tour are suitable for your interests and physical capabilities. Click the links above for more information.

You will need to be physically capable of travelling by bus/coach and comfortable with walking, stairs and steps.

If you do not wish to participate in a certain activity on the tour, you will be able to have free time in the same location.

A waiver will need to be signed if you wish to participate in the Trees Adventure activity. The courses have varying levels of difficulty from very easy to challenging.   You will be able to choose which courses you are comfortable with, or you can sit out this activity and watch the fun from below.

If you are successful in obtaining a place on the tour we will confirm via email on Wednesday 5 May with further details. We cannot guarantee everyone will be offered a place. Places will be prioritised to carers who have not attended a getaway before.
Express your interest online

I cant make these but would like to be on the waiting list for future Getaways

NDIS Newsletter 22 April 2021

1800 800 110

Participant First: Help shape the NDIS

Sign up to join the Participant First Engagement Initiative

Want to provide your feedback to shape the future of the NDIS?

Our Participant First Engagement Initiative helps us connect with participants, families and carers to get your ideas on creating a better participant experience.

If you’d like to work with us on delivering a better scheme for all, we’d love to hear from you.
Learn more.

For more information you can access the newsletter via the link below:

VMIAC Weekly Newsletter 22 April 2021

Just Saying!

From new consumer rights resources, to campaigns to change the future of Victoria’s mental health system. Keep reading to find out about this and more in this weeks VMIAC newsletter!


Now what are they doing about us, without us? We’ll be calling on you next week to act! Keep an eye on our social…

Read More

To access the newsletter click on the link below:

Inner South Family and Friends Support Group Meeting 7.30pm Tuesday 13 April 2021

GUEST SPEAKER: Andrew Foster
Discovery College Co-ordinator,
Alfred Mental and Addiction Health

TOPIC: Courses about Mental Health and Wellbeing – (designed and delivered for you, by you and with you)

VENUE: Level 4, 549 St Kilda Road Melbourne and/or ZOOM
Please note If restrictions change, presentation will be via Zoom only, but current situation enable us to meet as ‘in the good old days’ to catch up with friends, chat, share our experiences
and from 7.15pm to enjoy refreshments provided by our hard working committee.

Kindly always check the website on the day to check for any changes.

You can also join via internet or phone line (even land line)
Join Zoom meetings from a warm, comfortable spot at home, with some healthy nibbles
A pen and paper might also be handy to jot down notes.
A chat session will commence at 7.15pm, so please join early as Andrew will start at 7.30pm.

To join the Zoom meeting  please phone: Eleni on 0412 018 722 or
Judi on 0425 723 746 or 9528 2820 for details

TheMHS Learning Network Webinars 2021

Hear from well-known speakers who will bring the research, clinical, and lived experience perspectives under one ‘umbrella’ – enabling sector-wide access to the best available, current evidence and sharing of information. All integrated with expert commentary, including implications for those with lived experience.

You can access more information via the link below:

Connect Health – Accessible Psychological Interventions (API)

Flexible support for people with mild to moderate mental illness

Connect Health is currently taking referrals for the Accessible Psychological Interventions (API) service in Bayside.

API services include a range of short term psychological interventions. These are available in individual and family formats and are matched to people’s needs.

Interventions include:

  • cognitive-behavioural therapy
  • skills training
  • psycho-education
  • relaxation strategies
  • other evidence-based interventions.

API services can be delivered by clinical psychologists, psychologists, mental health social workers, occupational therapists and mental health nurses.

Refer via SEMPHN Access & Referral (8.30 am-4.30 pm weekdays)

  • Ph: 1800 862 363
  • Fax: 1300 354 053

Referral forms (including medical software templates) are available on the SEMPHN Access & Referral page. Other referral forms are accepted if they contain the required information.

Consent is needed for clients to receive services.

HeadtoHelp Support Services

Mental health

HeadtoHelp: Share the Bear

Who is HeadtoHelp for?

The HeadtoHelp service is open to Victorians of any age who may be experiencing distress or mental ill health. This includes people who have never accessed mental health services before and their family and friends. It also is for family and friends of those in aged care.

Who can refer to HeadtoHelp services?

Anyone can refer to HeadtoHelp. Support/services are accessible to everyone, at no cost. A Medicare card, ID or Mental Health Care Plan is not required. The team at HeadtoHelp intake are clinicians who use the Initial Assessment Referral Decision Support Tool (IAR-DST) to make an assessment and refer people to the appropriate type of service, with their consent.

Anyone can call HeadtoHelp central intake on ph: 1800 595 212Monday to Friday, 8.30am-5pm. HeadtoHelp services do not provide after-hours or emergency mental health advice or support.  In case of emergency, call 000.

Share the Bear! 

A friendly and relatable bear was designed to promote the HeadtoHelp service. The bear’s worries, stresses and loneliness are relatable feelings for many Victorians since the pandemic started.

Share the bear with your patients through some of these helpful resources: