Health and Well Being

QPR: Question, Persuade, Refer

QPR stands for Question, Persuade, and Refer — the 3 simple steps anyone can learn to help save a life from suicide.

Just as people trained in CPR help save thousands of lives each year, people trained in QPR learn how to recognise the warning signs of a suicide crisis and how to question, persuade, and refer someone to help.

QPR training will provide you with:

  • knowledge and skills to identify warning signs that someone may be suicidal
  • confidence to talk to them about suicidal thoughts
  • connect them with professional care.

Virtual Classroom via Zoom

Friday September 11th 2020 @ 2:30 pm – 5:00 pm

This training session is able to be provided free of cost to the South Coast and surrounding community due to funding from the Minderoo Foundation Fire Fund.

Book your ticket


The Impact of COVID-19 on Australians’ Health and Wellbeing

This study is a research collaboration between the National Ageing Research Institute and The University of Melbourne. We hope to gather as much insight as possible on how this pandemic has changed the lives of many Australians. As such, we are looking to engage a diversity of respondents, from different districts and demographics.

Have you got some time to help us understand the psychological & social impact of the #Covid19aus pandemic? Results will inform the advice given to people, the support needed, & the decisions taken, to keep Australians as well as possible. Survey link here:


Connect 19 – Supporting Seniors Get Connected During Covid Isolation.

This service is available to all our community seniors and is sponsored by the NSW Government and Warrigal

Project summary:

  • Open and free to all
    • Participants simply call 1800 106 930
    • Volunteers are best to email as there are some protocols to follow –
    • Potential volunteers are welcome to call 1800 106 930 and find out more first
  • Participants will be called by a volunteer
    • We will chat and find what they would like most
    • A regular phone chat might be enough
    • We will also offer to help with alternative options they are interested in
    • We will also be encouraging family and friend support networks where appropriate
  • If they want to use computers and on line we can support that as well
    • We have – free – 200 new Samsung Tablets with Telstra data packages to give away
    • Participants will receive this if they are very keen to learn and do not have their own technology
    • Thank you NSW Government Grants
  • All participants and Volunteers will be supported by the MyClubConnect social network also
    • MCC is being updated to include Covid 19 information and activity options.
    • This is available in our new Covid Support Newsletter and soon on the website.
    • To join MCC –
  • We are gearing to reach 2000 participants in the Illawarra – and more if the interest is there  
    • We are at currently about 700 participants becoming engaged by 70 volunteers so far and growing
    • We are still recruiting for both participants and volunteers
  • My aim as project manager is allow Connect 19 be as inclusive as possible
    • Thank you Rod for being my mentor in inclusiveness – I apply this to all my community project activities

BCS Darcy House

Relocated to 27-29 Wentworth Street, Port Kembla.

Open 9.15am-2.00pm Monday-Friday.

Baptist Community Service runs the Port Kembla community drop in centre – supporting street based sex workers, homeless, marginalized and disadvantaged people living in Port Kembla and surrounding areas.

BCS Darcy House provides a safe place where people are supported to address key issues, such as personal health, drug and alcohol dependence, mental health and housing needs.

The service also seeks to assist clients in developing skills to build independence and resilience.

Living Connected is a not-for profit community enterprise providing services for the social well-being of elders helping them to remain independent, connected and engaged through digital inclusion.

Online Services Update Living Connected Online Services Update
Young Mentors Program Living Connected Young Mentors Program online
Returning to limited Face-to-Face Living Connected Return to Face-to-Face

Group Zoom Sessions
At Living Connected we are enjoying the learning and friendly discussion at our 5 weekly Zoom sessions. As well as help people with all sorts of digital problems, we teach them how to use apps such as Zoom to stay connected online.

We also welcome those who join us at these Zoom sessions just to have a chat, particularly those in isolation or struggling to make sense of all that 2020 has thrown at us.

If anyone needs help for tjeir first Zoom Session please call us on 0409 753 808

Mondays 2:30 pm  Southern Illawarra Group

Meeting ID: 930 2714 7464  Password: 485354

Wednesdays 10am Wollongong Group

Meeting ID: 926 5995 4023  Password: 388523

Thursdays 3pm Northern Illawarra Group

Meeting ID: 921 0743 1729  Password: 382299

Thursdays 1:30pm South Coast Group

Meeting ID: 932 4247 3640  Password: 031765

Fridays 10am Shoalhaven Group

Meeting ID: 990 8404 5387  Password: 444633

Illawarra Interagency Annual Networking Event

2pm – Wednesday 26 August 2020

Registrations are open

It’s on again!
This is your Networking Event and what better time to stay connected than now.

A great opportunity to:

  • Meet other community organisations in the Illawarra
  • Connect and build relationships with peers in the sector you work in
  • Join our “Speed-Networking” activity via Zoom breakout rooms
  • Hear our top 10 Networking tips to enhance your networking capacity 
  • Hear about new organisations, projects and ideas via our mini-presentations
  • List your organisation and share your links on our ‘Expo chat box’
  • Bring a cuppa, enjoy and relax…

Register Now

If you are:

·         a new organisation

·         have a new project or

·         want to present a new idea

Express your interest to present at our mini-presentations (EOI’s via registration page)

Feedback from past events:
‘I liked learning new ways to network and it helped me to relax about doing it’

‘You provided an environment conducive to deeper connections and genuine working relationships.’

‘It was great to learn about different thinking styles and valuing unique perspectives to resolve problems’

The meeting will be held via ZOOM call and can be accessed by your computer, tablet or phone. Please check junk mail if you do not receive registration confirmation email.


Health and Wellbeing

Call the FREE epilepsy helpline

Do you have epilepsy or experience seizures? Are you feeling isolated, need advice about your medications, or just want to chat?

Call or email the EPILEPSY NURSE LINE. It is available 9am to 5pm, seven days per week.

Each call will be answered immediately by a Registered Nurse with special training in epilepsy management. You can trust that the information you receive will be accurate and safe.

If you prefer to email, you will receive a response within 24 hours.  

The service is proudly provided by Epilepsy Action Australia, with the financial assistance of the Australian Department of Health.



The Illawarra Shoalhaven Suicide Prevention Collaborative (the Collaborative) invites you to get involved with the local co-design of the Towards Zero Suicides initiatives.

In partnership with the Local Health District and the Primary Health Network, the Collaborative, is bringing together a rich and diverse group of stakeholders to collaborate with the common purpose of designing supports that better meet the needs of people in suicidal crisis.

The initial co-design of the Safe Spaces initiative has now taken place and the service will soon be put out for tender. The next initiative to be co-designed is the Suicide Prevention Outreach Teams.

Suicide Prevention Outreach Teams

Suicide Prevention Outreach Teams (SP Outreach Teams) will provide assertive immediate and follow-up care for people in the community experiencing a suicidal crisis. SP Outreach Teams will be funded by NSW Ministry of Health, but delivered locally by non-government organisation/s.

The co-design

Critically, these SP Outreach Teams must be designed through a genuine collaboration between those who provide supports and those who use them. This is essential to making sure the new services meet the needs of our community, complement existing supports, and reach those who are struggling but not already connecting with local supports.

People with a lived experience of suicide have a particularly vital role to play in designing supports that meet the needs of the people who access them.

The co-design process is an open, respectful one where all participants are equal. All participants will have their voice heard and respected.

It will be an opportunity to:

  • Have your experience valued, and use your experience to help others.
  • Contribute your ideas about what these services need to look like in order to meet the needs of our community.

How to get involved

The co-design process for SP Outreach Teams will run from August – September 2020. There will be multiple opportunities and ways for people with lived experience and health professionals / service providers to contribute including online surveys and focus groups.

If you, or anyone you know, would like to be involved, you can express your interest via the link below:

Expressions of interest for participating via online focus groups close on midnight Wednesday 5th August.


Abuse of an Older Person or Adult with Disability

We are currently arranging for the stickers to be printed and looking at creating signage and banners with the designs. Over the next year we will expand the campaign, raising awareness of different types of abuse and their impacts.

Please feel free to circulate and share the poster with services / schools / organisations who would find this information beneficial.

Any comments and feedback for future designs and materials would be greatly appreciated.

Emma Brown – Community Safety and Crime Prevention Officer

T 02 9707 9212   M 0456 925 142


Sexual Health

Unpack the Sexual Health & Relationship Kit Webinar with NSW Health is now available on YouTube.

The 44 minute webinar demonstrates how to use The Kit as a teaching tool to run health education sessions and focus groups by giving participants the opportunity to unpack and discuss the information around sexual health and healthy relationships in an open and respectful manner. Click image below to play.

Click HERE to start or copy the URL into your browser

For hard copies of the Sexual Health & Relationship Kit please contact us.


Sofia Lema is of Colombian heritage and works for Illawarra Shoalhaven Local Health District (ISLHD) Multicultural Health Service. She holds a double degree in Social Science and political science as well as a Masters of Social Development from UNSW. Since moving to Australia in the mid 1990’S, Sofia has developed a cultural curiosity in terms of social cultural dynamics and how this groups interact with one another. Most recently she’s interested in enabling people and services to be aware of their own unconscious biases and how these can have an impact on Culturally and Linguistically Diverse clients when accessing service delivery.

Maddison Stratten is a health promotion officer with the ISLHD HIV & Related Programs Unit and also works part time with non-government organisation Healthy Cities Illawarra. Maddy has a Bachelor in Public Health major in Health Promotion (UOW), Master of International Public Health (USYD), and a passion for breaking down barriers, empowering marginalised communities and promoting a positive approach to health. As a co-leader for NSW Playsafe Programs International Students, Maddy has enjoyed developing resources and education sessions for international students. Maddy is interested in working alongside the CALD community to connect people with consistent messages around safe sex and healthy relationships.

Naomi Viret is a senior health promotion officer with the ISLHD HIV & Related Programs Unit and has worked in the field of sexual health for the past 10 years. For 5 of these years Naomi was also a sexual health counsellor. Prior to her current role, Naomi worked in Canberra for the Department of Health and Ageing in Family Planning and Aboriginal Health. Naomi’s qualifications are in Psychology and Population health, holding a Master’s degree in Public Health. Naomi has worked extensively with the youth sector and with Aboriginal communities in both NSW and the Northern Territory. Naomi is passionate about education and empowering communities to take a positive approach to all things sexual health and relationships.

Registrations are now open for the Confidence, Clarity & Contraception Webinar

Wednesday 29th July -10.00-11.30am.

Contraception is an important and necessary part of life for many. Now more than ever, there are options available to suit everyone for every stage of life. We will unpack the Contraception Kit from Family Planning NSW which contains barrier methods, hormonal, non-hormonal and long acting reversible contraception.

Once you have registered we will post you a pack containing an  O-cube, which has been specifically  designed to demonstrate the internal condom and a banana penis, which  is used  to demonstrate the external condom along with some other goodies.

Presenters are Health Education Officers, Kaitlin Middleton and Maddison Stratten from

Click HERE to register.

This event is free & you can cancel up to 24 hours prior to the event.

Please call 0421 098 342 or email if you need to cancel.

Contraception-which one are you?

We’ve recently had some fun creating a series of Facebook posts on contraception inspired by 1800 My Options on Instagram, who provide information about contraception, pregnancy options and sexual health in Victoria.

Please use these where you can and if you need us to convert these into electronic posters for use at your service, please let us know.

Have fun spotting which one you are!

Last few weeks to go into the draw to win this beautiful surfboard!

You can still go into the draw to win this surfboard from anywhere in the Illawarra Shoalhaven by texting ‘Take Blaktion’ and your postcode to Jen on 0434 568 233. You will get a reply text confirming from Jen your entry.

Winner will be drawn 21st July 2020.

Shout out to board creator Lani Balzan for your fantastic Sea Eagle artwork watching over us all. Which we really need right now.

Young People

Are you looking for high-quality virtual youth engagement program?

Videos for Change is launching an online program, which will engage, empower and inspire your young people through an interactive virtual experience, run by High Resolves professional facilitators.

Videos for Change is a real-world, youth-led, project-based social advocacy project in which young people create one-minute videos on issues they feel passionate about. 

In a time of isolation and uncertainty, young people are looking for an opportunity to influence positive change. The 2020 Australian National Videos for Change competition will launch in May, asking Australian high school students to consider the question, “What does ‘community’ mean in a crisis?”

The Videos for Change Online Program will empower the young people you support to get involved and contribute to a national conversation on issues that affect us all.  

Videos for Change Online Program

  • fully digital, end-to-end experience run by High Resolves facilitators to guide young people through the Videos for Change experience in partnership with youth workers or teachers
  • Online project-based learning that can be aligned with the Australian and state-based curriculum of English, Humanities and Media or can be embedded as part of a Wellbeing Program
  • Hear what teachers have to say about Videos for Change

Videos for Change is brought to you by the award-winning Citizenship and Leadership Program, High Resolves

Now in its 19th year, the Mission Australia Youth Survey continues to be the largest annual survey of young people of its kind in Australia. 

The Youth Survey enables young people to share their values, challenges and ambitions and to ‘speak up’ about the issues that they care about. It is widely used by Governments, NGOs and community groups to develop policies and youth programs.

Click HERE to start or copy this URL