Services during COVID-19

People who are Homeless

The Department of Communities and Justice (DCJ) have purchased additional accommodation for people who are homeless, at risk of homelessness or rough sleeps should they need to isolate due to COVID-19.  It is the same service / number as before (below).

At present the phone line will say it is for 5 days and can be extended in 5 days lots, however the Illawarra Shoalhaven Local Health District are liaising with DCJ to ensure their messaging is updated in line with any changes. Additionally DCJ are enhancing their assertive outreach program and will be out talking with rough sleepers and offering them accommodation.

Karitane is Open Offering 100% Virtual Services

Parents Can Now Self-Refer Karitane Open, 100% Virtual Services

We know these are challenging and uncharted times and we want to ensure parents and carers get the support they need. From today, Monday March 30th we have have transitioned all our services to be delivered using Telehealth platforms. We are committed to supporting families through COVID-19 and we know now more than ever parents need support.

Parents Can NOW Self-Refer!

As COVID-19 continues to put increased pressure on the health system we no longer require a GP/health professional referral. We have made access for parents easier than ever, parents can now self-refer on-line here.

All parents need to access Karitane support is a smartphone, laptop or tablet. We are continuing to look at new ways to support families and will be sharing online supported playgroups, parenting workshops and more soon. Karitane digital services include;

Virtual Home Visits
Individual consultations up to 2 hours (video call) with a Karitane Child and Family Health Nurse for parenting challenges relating to sleep and settling, breastfeeding, feeding and nutrition, routines, and adjusting to parenting. The number of Virtual Home Visits you receive will depend on your individual needs and our intake team will develop the right support plan for your family.

Toddler Behaviour Telehealth Support
Aggression, tantrums, whinging and hyperactivity can be normal in the toddle years, but sometimes they can be ongoing and stressful. We provide you with skills and strategies to manage the challenging times and improve the quality of your relationship with your child. This service can include both short term support and more intensive support with Internet-Parent Child Interaction Therapy.

Mental Health Telehealth Support
Are you, or someone you know, feeling overwhelmed, worried or sad during pregnancy or soon after birth of a baby? If so, this could be Perinatal Mood Disorder (PMD). PMD is very common, 1 in 5 mums and 1 in 10 dads experience it as a new parent. Our team are qualified in Perinatal Mental Health and our offering support using Telehealth platforms.

Self-Refer Now

Guide for Local Aboriginal Land Councils

Supporting Apprentices and Trainees

Coronavirus Explained In Your Language

SBS have produced 15 ‘Coronavirus Explained In Your Language in language videos.

Available in Filipino, Greek, Italian, Korean, Mandarin, Punjabi, Spanish, Tamil,

Arabic, Cantonese, Hindi, Indonesia, Pashto, Persian, Vietnamese.

Click HERE to link to the relevant language. SBS is planning to produce another 10 this week

A COVID – 19 and domestic violence

Please know that being outside to escape harm and seek safety is LAWFUL.

It is considered a ‘reasonable excuse’ under the Public Health Act to be to be outside if you are:
  1. ‘accessing….social services, domestic violence services, mental health services’
  2. ‘avoiding injury or illness or to escape risk of harm’.

We are open – and we know home is not always the safest place to be. If you or your children are experiencing violence, abuse or controlling behaviours inside your home call us on 4255 6800 or come to us at 2/10 Belfast Avenue, Warilla.

What to look out for….. these are some of the ways people using family violence may use COVID-19 as a tactic or reason to abuse you:

  1. Withhold necessary items such as food, medicine, hand sanitiser or disinfectants.
  2. Misinform you about the pandemic to control or frighten you.
  3. Use the pandemic as an excuse to gain total or increase control of the family’s finances.
  4. Threaten or prevent you and your children from seeking appropriate medical attention if you have symptoms or hide your Medicare card.
  5. Increase their monitoring and criticism of your parenting, such as blaming you if the children ‘misbehave’ or are upset.
  6. Further isolate you or your children in the home by restricting your movements within the house, forcing you or the children into specific spaces in the house, or disabling your mobility devices.
  7. Increasingly monitor your personal communication devices such as mobile phone, email, online messaging.
  8. Use COVID-19 to excuse, blame or justify their abusive and violent behaviour towards you and the children.
  9. An ex-partner may use COVID-19 in their attempt to reconcile or enter/live in your home. They may try to emotionally manipulate you to allow them to stay to ‘help’ you with the children.
  10. Breach a family violence intervention order.
  11. An ex-partner may use COVID-19 to threaten you about isolating the children. This could include using Family Law contact orders to bluff you to allow them in to stay or have contact with the children.
  12. Feel more justified and escalate their isolation tactics.

Read more here: https://bit.ly/344traY

Illawarra Women’s Health Centre

I’m writing to let you know that, as per the attached fact sheet from NSW Health regarding the Violence Abuse Neglect teams and the classification of domestic and family violence services as essential, until otherwise directed by the NSW Government the Illawarra Womens Health Centre is working on the assumption that we are classified as an ‘essential service’ and we will remain open for:

  1. Domestic and family violence and related mental health support services (including crisis support); and
  2. Essential medical services such as abortion, contraception and adverse cervical screening results.

This includes when we go into ‘lockdown’ which is expected shortly. We have all the appropriate hygiene and distancing protocols in place.

The fact sheet states very clearly that VAN services are considered ‘essential services’, because of the higher risk existing DFV clients will be in in this shutdown/lockdown environment as well as more generally, the inevitable increasing rates of DFV due to the crisis (which has been well covered in the media).  The fact sheet specifically notes that in many instances it is NOT appropriate to provide telehealth support to DFV clients, because it creates additional risks for them and where possible support should be provided in person.

Also, we have established a Social Support telephone service, as per the attached flyer. Please feel free to refer your clients to this line, or the above services.

Please let me know if you have any questions or if you need the Centre’s support.

Sally Stevenson AM, General Manager

t:   4255 6800 m: 0419 169 911

e:  sallys@womenshealthcentre.com.au

Sticky Stuff Online Training

Yfoundations would like to invite you to Sticky Stuff Online training

Sticky Stuff Online is an engaging and interactive version of the popular one day face to face Sticky Stuff training. The online training is suitable

for anyone who is working with young people and looking for tools, tips and activities for engaging young people around the topic of sexual health.

Sticky Stuff online is FREE to access and should take about an hour to complete, providing you with a certificate upon completion.

To access the training:

  1. Click this link
  2. Create your own account in Yfoundations’ Learning Management System (LMS)
  3. Follow the steps in the welcome email after creating an account and enrol into training.
  4. The training will remain accessible for 1 month after you create your account.

Feel free to contact Nusrat Jahan (nusrat@yfoundations.org.au) if you have any questions or concerns or visit Yfoundations website for more details.

We hope you will enjoy Sticky Stuff Online!  

Sticky Stuff online training is funded and developed in collaboration with NSW Department of Health.