NAVIGATION

NAVIGATION

GEIFN | CONSOLIDATED | Information for Individuals, Householders and Religious Community Leaders on Coronavirus (COVID-19) | Tuesday 29 September 2020

  [Edited and compiled from public addresses]

Topics

  1. VIC | State of Emergency Update
  2. VIC | Coronavirus (COVID-19) roadmap to reopening
  3. VIC | Community Activation and Social Isolation Initiative (CASI) Translated Fact Sheets
  4. VIC | Coronavirus (COVID-19) Extreme Hardship Support Program
  5. VIC | Pandemic Leave Disaster Payment
  6. VIC | Financial assistance for utilities for Victorians
  7. VIC | New business support to aid lockdown recovery
  8. VIC | WORKING | Youth Employment for Victoria
  9. VIC | BOOSTING | Mental Health and AOD Services and Their Workers
  10. VIC | UPGRADING | More than 50 Public Aged Care Facilities
  11. VIC | GRANTS | Hospitality Business Grant Program
  12. VIC | GRANTS | Commercial Landlord Hardship Fund | Open, closing 16 October 2020
  13. VIC | GRANTS | Supporting Connection Among LGBTIQ Victorians | Open, until 23 October 2020
  14. VIC | PAUSING | Evictions Ban Extended and Extra Renter Protections introduced (residential and commercial) | until 31 December 2020
  15. VIC | RESTORATIVE | Youth Justice Trial to Boost Safety and Reduce Reoffending
  16. VIC | SUPPORTING | Farmers Get The Workers They Need This Season
  17. VIC | REHABILITATING | More Bushfire Appeal Funds to Help Communities and Families
  18. VIC | TRAINING | Extra Funding To Keep Apprentices Learning
  19. MELB | STUDYING | Workshops for VCE students
  20. MELB | MARKING | Tunnelling Hits Halfway With TBM Breakthroughs
  21. VIC | VMC | Nominate a diversity hero today | Nominations close Sunday 11 October 2020
  22. VIC | MAV | Shelter Commissions Program
  23. VIC | ABC | Victorian Voices: COVID-19 livestream
  24. VIC | CCOEI | Virtual Music Concerts
  25. VIC | SAFE STEPS | Escaping harm - even during curfew hours is OK
  26. VIC | WIRE | PROVIDING | free generalist information, support and referral service for women, non-binary and gender-diverse people
  27. VIC | VMC | Community Ambassador videos
  28. VIC | OPAN | Older Persons Advocacy Network | supporting over 51 different languages
  29. VIC | ECCV | Policy Issues Briefs: Impacts of COVID-19 on mental health, employment, social cohesion and ethnic seniors' clubs
  30. VIC | INQUIRING | Have Your Say Over The Future Of The Gig Economy
  31. NZ | Talking to Kids about Coronavirus
  32. AUST | Coronavirus hotline
  33. AUST | Helpers and Reliable Sources Along the Way
  34. Acknowledgment to Sources
  35. Bye bye to Essentialists
  36. Self-Isolators, Non-Essentials And The Homebound


1. VIC | State of Emergency Update

The Victorian Government has announced Sunday 27/9 that Metropolitan Melbourne will move to the Roadmap Second Step from midnight Sunday 27 September.
This Step will see the curfew lift in Metropolitan Melbourne from 5am on Monday 28 September. There will be higher on the spot fines for breaching rules about visitors to your home and outdoor gatherings.
There are still only 4 reasons to leave your home:
  • shopping for food and essential items
  • exercise and outdoor activity
  • permitted work and study, 
  • and caregiving. 
You must continue to stay within 5km of your home for shopping and exercise. Face coverings must cover the nose and mouth, and face shields on their own will no longer be allowed. There will be a one-week grace period before fines are issued.

What is changing?

A reduction in the number of coronavirus (COVID-19) cases in Melbourne in recent weeks has occurred faster than predicted, allowing for some small changes:

Health, Hospitals and Care Facilities
  • Non-urgent dental services can resume
  • Most health practitioners and allied health professionals can provide some face-to-face services.
  • Visitors allowed at care facilities and hospitals for up to two hours each day
Education and childcare
  • Childcare is open to all children.
  • All primary school students, VCE and VCAL students (including Year 10 students in VCE) and specialist school students will return to their schools for learning from October 12.
  • In-home child minding will be allowed for all children
Ceremonies and special occasions
  • Religious gatherings and ceremonies can take place outdoors with 5 people and 1 faith leader next to a place of worship.
  • Weddings can take place outdoor with a maximum of 5 attendees including the couple and two witnesses. The celebrant is not included in the group of 5.
  • A person may now attend the resting place (a cemetery or columbarium) of a deceased relative for remembering a key milestone (e.g birthday, death anniversary etc). The 5km rule does not apply, but you must stay within metropolitan Melbourne. Gathering limits of 5 people from 2 households apply.
Social
  • Public gatherings of up to 5 people from a maximum of 2 households can meet outdoors for social interaction, exercise or recreation (infants under 12 months of age are not included in the cap) for a maximum of 2 hours within 5 km of their home.
Office Work, Shopping and services
  • Work from home unless you are in a permitted industry: more workplaces to be permitted in following stages as per separate 'industry road maps'
  • Only essential retail businesses will be open while others will be restricted to click and collect (no change)
  • Hospitality businesses will be open only for take-away and delivery (no change);
  • Families and households are able to shop together, but only once a day.
  • Real estate inspections are allowed at a residential property or display home with one agent and one prospective purchaser plus one person from an existing household or intimate partner.
  • Outdoor pools reopen, personal training for up to two people per trainer
Face masks
  • You will now be required to wear a face mask whenever you leave home, covering your nose and mouth. Face coverings such as a scarf, bandana or face shield are no longer permitted.
Timing of next step?
The Victorian Government has announced that metropolitan Melbourne will move to the Third Step as soon as the 14 day daily average of new cases is less than five, with movement between steps spaced at least 3 weeks apart. The earliest date Metropolitan Melbourne could hit this would be October 19. These steps are already in place across regional Victoria.


2. VIC | Coronavirus (COVID-19) roadmap to reopening

Translated materials: easing of restrictions
As cases numbers are going down there’s still work to do. As we begin to ease restrictions, it’s important that everyone knows the rules, and how to keep themselves and their community safe.

In this pack, you’ll find in-language materials that explain what’s going on in simple, day-to-day language. You’ll hear conversations between families about what a ‘social bubble’ is, and a chat between co-workers to understand the payments available for people who are isolating and can’t work.
Download and share now

Translated materials: current restrictions
With the steps to reopening taking place in a staggered approach, it is important that everyone checks in regularly with official information for all of the details affecting Victorians. It's important that everyone practices COVIDsafe behaviours and follows the rules. The Victorian Government has launched a new campaign in 55 community languages reminding people that restrictions will be in place for some time.
Download and share now

Badges for Victorians who are unable to wear face masks
Victorian Government Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) have created badges that individuals can download on smartphones or print to keep in a wallet or lanyard holder for when they need to let others know they are unable to wear a face mask for a valid reason. It is a person’s choice to use the badges. There are two types of badges people can choose and download from the DHHS website.

Smart phone badge
For anyone who is exempt and has a valid reason for not wearing a face mask.

For persons who are Deaf or hard of hearing who need the person they are communicating with to remove their face mask.

Print-ready badge

Translated resources on coronavirus available in 57 languages here.


3. VIC | Community Activation and Social Isolation Initiative (CASI) Translated Fact Sheets

The Victorian Government’s new Community Activation and Social Isolation (CASI) initiative is intended to help people who might be feeling lonely or have lost their regular networks during coronavirus (COVID-19) to build social connections and networks of support in their local communities. Factsheets on the service are available in Chinese Simple / Mandarin, Italian, Greek, Vietnamese, Arabic, Punjabi, Hindi, Sinhalese, Spanish, Turkish, Fasi, Somali, Chin Hakha, Karen, Dinka, Oromo, Tigrinya, Malay, Nepalese and Urdu.
Download the fact sheets

4. VIC | Coronavirus (COVID-19) Extreme Hardship Support Program

Red Cross, Brotherhood of St Laurence and the Department of Health and Human Services have implemented the Extreme Hardship Support Program to provide emergency financial assistance to people who are unable to access income support.
 
To be eligible for this program a person must:

  • live in Victoria, and
  • be unable to access Commonwealth income support (such as JobKeeper or JobSeeker) or the Victorian International Student Emergency Relief Fund, and
  • have zero or very limited income, savings or community support
  • be a temporary or provisional visa holder, or an undocumented migrant.

To apply for emergency financial assistance go to www.redcross.org.au/vicrelief. Applicants will need their passport and bank statements showing transactions for the last three months. From Wednesday it will also possible to call a dedicated phone line on 1800 855 240. Speak to someone at Red Cross if you do not have the right visa or bank documents.
 
The website has information in simplified Chinese, Farsi, Malay, Nepalese, Spanish, Tamil, Urdu and Vietnamese.
 
FAQs and a fact sheet for community organisations are now available on the DHHS coronavirus website.
 
This emergency financial assistance complements other Victorian Government hardship supports available to all people living in Victoria, including the $1500 worker support payment, the $450 test isolation payment, the and the rent relief grant.

5. VIC | Pandemic Leave Disaster Payment 

For those who have exhausted their sick leave in Victoria. To apply, simply call 180 22 66.

6. VIC | Financial assistance for utilities for Victorians

The Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning have prepared translated materials that highlight available financial assistance for utilities for Victorians during this difficult time. Please share this information widely with your networks to support Victorians facing financial challenges in paying for their basic necessities.Find out more

7. VIC | New business support to aid lockdown recovery

Announced Sunday 13 September 2020, Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews announced a new $3 billion package
  • $1.1 billion in cash grants for small and medium sized businesses to companies "most affected" by coronavirus restrictions;
  • The establishment of a $251 million Licensed Venue Fund with grants of between $10,000 and $30,000;
  • Payroll tax will be deferred for businesses with payrolls up to $10 million for the full 2020-21 financial year;
  • A further $137 million in tax relief on top of an existing $1.5 billion program of tax relief;
  • $20 million for small businesses to help them access digital programs such as Shopify, training and workshops to adapt their businesses to online operations;
  • $15.7 million for an export recovery package to address logistics and supply chain issues caused by the pandemic, and establish new export channels;
  • $27 million worth of savings for businesses from the waiving of liquor license fees;
  • $41 million savings for businesses from a 50 per cent cut in stamp duty for commercial and industrial properties in regional Victoria; and
  • Grants of up to $20,000 to businesses in alpine resorts.
To find out more about the support package and find out if you're eligible to apply for a grant, go to: www.business.vic.gov.au
Read 14/9 full article The Age

8. VIC | WORKING | Youth Employment for Victoria

The Working for Victoria Youth Employment Program is an opportunity for young people to gain experience in the Victorian public service. Up to 800 young people will have the chance to get a ‘foot in the door’ and develop skills for the future. The Youth Employment Program is part of the Working for Victoria initiative, which helps Victorians, including people who have lost their jobs as a result of coronavirus (COVID-19), find paid work that supports our community.
Find out more about Working for Victoria

9. VIC | BOOSTING | Mental Health and AOD Services and Their Workers

Enabling non-government organisations who deliver mental health and alcohol and other drugs (AOD) services are ready to respond and to prevent possible outbreaks, as coronavirus case numbers come down – and Victoria takes steps to COVID Normal. 

Mental health and AOD services share some common risk factors as those in general health services and aged care and disability residential services, such as shared facilities and servicing vulnerable cohorts – this funding will ensure these vital services are able to safely care for Victorians during the coronavirus pandemic and through recovery.

One of the many programs this funding has supported includes the new Partners in Wellbeing service - a free, state-wide one-on-one counselling service providing Victorians with ongoing wellbeing coaching and emotional support. The service helps people explore the reasons causing stress and anxiety helping them get back in control.

Partners in Wellbeing service is available to anyone in Victoria by contacting 1300 375 330. Support continues to be available through Lifeline Australia (13 11 14), Beyond Blue (1800 512 348), or Kids Helpline (1800 55 1800).
Read the full 23/9 Victorian Government statement

10. VIC | UPGRADING | More than 50 Public Aged Care Facilities

The Victorian Government is upgrading more than 50 public sector residential aged care services, delivering hundreds of new jobs and ensuring thousands of older Victorians continue to get the care and comfort they deserve.

The package will deliver $20 million to upgrade 33 facilities that collectively operate 1,787 aged care beds – including 267 beds that are dedicated to supporting the mental health of older Victorians. 

This includes $15 million shared by 17 metropolitan facilities to upgrade buildings, replace infrastructure and improve accessibility for residents and staff. 

Another $5 million will see 16 regional facilities also undertake important upgrades, including installing new flooring, refurbishing communal living areas and replacing equipment.

A further $10 million will deliver 20 improvement projects across 19 regional facilities, funded through the fourth round of the Government’s landmark $350 million Regional Health Infrastructure Fund (RHIF). 
Read the full 20/9 Victorian Government statement

11. VIC | GRANTS | Hospitality Business Grant Program

This Business Victoria program supports food service businesses that have been affected by the return to Stage 3 and Stage 4 ‘Stay at Home’ restrictions to help slow the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19) in Victoria. Eligible businesses will be provided with one-off, $25,000 grants to pay for business costs to support the continued operation of their business. An additional $5,000 is available for each additional premises, capped at a total of $20,000.
Find out more and apply

12. VIC | GRANTS | Commercial Landlord Hardship Fund | Open, closing 16 October 2020

The Victorian Government is offering grants for small private landlords who may not have the capacity to provide rent reductions to their tenants under the Commercial Tenancy Relief Scheme. Up to $3,000 per tenancy to eligible small private, individual and joint-owner landlords facing financial hardship after reducing rent for their tenants under CTRS requirements, from 21 August 2020 for eight weeks or until funds are exhausted, whichever comes first.
Find out more and apply

13. VIC | GRANTS | Supporting Connection Among LGBTIQ Victorians | Open, until 23 October 2020

Virtual events and projects that help LGBTIQ Victorians connect to each other and experience pride and belonging are set to be held across the state, with support from the Victorian Government.

Minister for Equality Martin Foley today launched the new round of the Pride Events and Festivals Fund.  Organisations are invited to apply for grants of up to $10,000 for events and projects for LGBTIQ communities which can be run online before 30 June 2021. Total funding of $200,000 is available.

This change will make it easier for LGBTIQ Victorians living in rural and regional areas to access a broad range of diverse events. At least half of the grants will be awarded to organisations based in regional and rural areas, which will be delivering events to local LGBTIQ communities.

Reflecting Victorian Government's commitment to inclusion, all event organisers will be required to ensure their event provides meaningful access for people living with a disability.

Organisations can apply for grants until 23 October 2020, with application information available at vic.gov.au/pride-events-and-festivals-fund

14. VIC | PAUSING | Evictions Ban Extended and Extra Renter Protections introduced (residential and commercial) | until 31 December 2020

The Victorian Government will extend a ban on evictions and rental increases until the end of the year, increase assistance and ensure tenant turnover is taken into account in rental negotiations – giving tenants certainty and security they won’t lose their home or workplace during the pandemic.

Under the extension, evictions will continue to be banned for both residential and commercial tenancies until 31 December 2020, except in specific circumstances. Rental increases continue to be banned for the same period.
Read the full 20/8 Victorian Government statement

15. VIC | RESTORATIVE | Youth Justice Trial to Boost Safety and Reduce Reoffending

A pilot program to help young people build important life skills including developing stronger relationships and make better life choices is now underway in Victorian youth justice centres.

Minister for Youth Justice Natalie Hutchins announced $350,000 in funding for the pilot program, which will improve the day-to-day operations of youth justice centres by reducing violence and conflict.

Using restorative justice principles, young people will be taught how to manage conflict and interpersonal relationships in custody so they prosper on their release into the community.

Restorative justice helps to build positive, respectful relationships and encourages young people to take accountability for their actions and address harm that may have occurred.

The 2 year trial is being run by Jesuit Social Services, drawing more than 20 years of experience using restorative justice processes across Australia to guide young people towards positive pathways.
Read the full 16/9 Victorian Government statement

16. VIC | SUPPORTING | Farmers Get The Workers They Need This Season

Minister for Agriculture Jaclyn Symes announced a $17 million package to help address seasonal workforce shortages brought on by the coronavirus pandemic and reiterated the call for farmers to register their workforce needs on the Working for Victoria platform to be matched with eager jobseekers.

The package includes more than $6 million to boost the supply of COVIDSafe accommodation for seasonal workers, including working with councils and local accommodation providers like motels and caravan parks to explore accommodation options for regional seasonal workers.

To help connect workers to jobs as quickly as possible, the Government will also employ new Seasonal Workforce Coordinators who, along with new Engagement Officers, will link local industry groups, employers, labour hire agencies, local government and other stakeholders.

Jobseekers can register now and be alerted when opportunities in the sector appear on the site. To do so and to find out more about the Agriculture Workforce Plan go to agriculture.vic.gov.au/agworkforceplan.
Read the full 17/9 Victorian Government statement

17. VIC | REHABILITATING | More Bushfire Appeal Funds to Help Communities and Families

Locals will help direct $14 million in funding for various recovery and rebuilding projects and programs in fire-affected areas, thanks to the generosity of Victorian Bushfire Appeal donors across our state and beyond.

The Victorian Bushfire Appeal’s $4 million Community Grants Program addresses short to medium-term recovery needs endorsed by Community Recovery Committees across the Alpine, Towong and East Gippsland shires.

Community Recovery Committees are comprised of diverse groups of locals from bushfire affected areas who come together to guide councils and government on funding priorities. This community-led approach ensures projects and programs are the right fit for each community.

Organisations wishing to access the Victorian Bushfire Appeal Community Grants Program can contact their local council or Community Recovery Committee, with more information at vic.gov.au/bushfireappeal. More information about Community Recovery Committees can be found at brv.vic.gov.au.
Read the full 17/9 Victorian Government statement

18. VIC | TRAINING | Extra Funding To Keep Apprentices Learning

Apprentices and trainees will continue to get the help they need to complete their apprenticeships and training and find employers, thanks to the Victorian Government.

Minister for Training, Skills and Higher Education Gayle Tierney today announced an extra $900,000 funding for the Program for Retrenched Apprentices and Trainees.

The program, a collaboration with the Apprenticeship Employment Network (AEN), the peak body for group training employers, is now fully funded to operate till next June.

More than 400 apprentices and trainees have registered with the program, and more than 30 have been assisted to recommence with a new employer during coronavirus while close to 300 more are training.

Apprentices and trainees who register are supported by a project officer until they are placed with an employer.

Employers can also register apprenticeship and traineeship vacancies at the site, making the process of matching them with displaced trainees and apprentices easier.
Read the full 17/9 Victorian Government statement

19. MELB | STUDYING | Workshops for VCE students 

If you work with VCE students or their families in the Flemington/North Melbourne area who have been impacted by coronavirus (COVID-19) restrictions, please pass on the details of these online workshops, provided by the Department of Education and Training and Inner Melbourne African Australian Partnership (IMAAP), a Victorian African Communities Action Plan Initiative (VACAP) homework club provider.
Find out more

20. MELB | MARKING | Tunnelling Hits Halfway With TBM Breakthroughs

Two giant tunnel boring machines (TBMs) have broken through key sections of the Metro Tunnel, marking the half-way mark of tunnelling on the ground-breaking project.

Construction on the Metro Tunnel Project has continued throughout the coronavirus pandemic, with more than 1,800 workers adhering to strict COVID-19 safety measures to keep the project going.

The four TBMs are named after ground-breaking women: Victoria's first female Premier Joan Kirner, Australian women's cricket captain Meg Lanning, Victoria's first female Member of Parliament Lady Millie Peacock and wartime medical hero Alice Appleford.

The project will connect the Sunbury Line to the Cranbourne and Pakenham lines via two nine kilometre tunnels up to 30 metres below Melbourne with five new underground stations, and links to the existing network at key locations.
Read the full 22/9 Victorian Government statement

21. VIC | VMC | Nominate a diversity hero today | Nominations close

Sunday 11 October 2020 Do you know someone who deserves to be recognised for their outstanding efforts to strengthen multiculturalism in Victoria? Nominate them for an award! The Victorian Multicultural Awards for Excellence recognise the outstanding achievements of people and organisations who strengthen multiculturalism across 15 categories.
Find out more and nominate

22. VIC | MAV | Shelter Commissions Program

Multicultural Arts Victoria is inviting expressions of interest for Shelter 2, a commissions program developed to respond to the unique challenges presented by coronavirus (COVID-19) for culturally diverse artists and communities. The second edition is open to culturally and linguistically diverse artists who live in or who were staying in any of 9 public housing estates in Flemington, Kensington and North Melbourne during the July lockdown.
Find out more and apply

23. VIC | ABC | Victorian Voices: COVID-19 livestream

“We're all in this together" yet every community is unique, with different needs and ways of connecting. ABC Melbourne is partnering with the Victorian Council of Social Service to deliver a series of online events to discuss critical COVID-19 public health and legal information. There will be a focus on working with communities and language groups that might not ordinarily engage with the mainstream media.
Find out more and register

24. VIC | CCOEI | Virtual Music Concerts

Communities Council on Ethnic Issues (CCOEI) are running a series of free, online Multicultural Community Concerts to help keep communities connected and engaged. The series starts this Sunday 6 September and will include a special performance by Ade Ishs. Tune in via their Facebook page to enjoy a variety of musical and dance acts from different cultural and community groups.
Find out more

25. VIC | SAFE STEPS | Escaping harm - even during curfew hours is OK

Community leaders dealing with matters of family and domestic violence need to be aware that those escaping harm can do so even during the curfew hours of 8pm-5am.

Anyone can leave their home at anytime to escape family or domestic violence. 

Safe Steps Family Violence Response Centre is Victoria’s statewide first response service for women, young people and children experiencing family violence.If someone is in immediate danger call 000.

26. VIC | WIRE | PROVIDING | free generalist information, support and referral service for women, non-binary and gender-diverse people

Free support, referral and information for all Victorian women, nonbinary and gender-diverse people.Commonly arising issues include:WIRE stands for Women’s Information and Referral Exchange although we have now extended our service to respond to the needs of non-binary and gender-diverse people as well. We are the only Victoria-wide free generalist information, support and referral service run by women and non-binary people for women, non-binary and gender-diverse people.

A just and inclusive society where all people can thrive.

Women’s Information and Referral Exchange (WIRE)
Telephone Support Line on 1300 134 130 (available until 5pm) 
Text chat is available (from 9.30am to 4.30pm)
Email: support@wire.org.au
Website: https://www.wire.org.au

27. VIC | VMC | Community Ambassador videos

The Victorian Government is sharing community ambassador videos, delivered by community leaders in their own language. In the videos, they share what the current coronavirus restrictions are, why they are so important, and instructions on wearing a face covering. By sharing these messages, you are helping your network stay safe and informed about coronavirus (COVID-19).
Download the stakeholder pack

28. VIC | OPAN | Older Persons Advocacy Network | supporting over 51 different languages

Older Persons Advocacy Network (OPAN) supports ethno-specific organisations in Victoria, in their promotion of The Older Persons COVID-19 Support Line (OPCSL) within their communities.

Some older people are more vulnerable to COVID-19 but less connected to the internet and in need of ways to access information for their circumstances. The Older Persons COVID-19 Support Line provides information and support.

Please find more information about OPCSL, translated into 51 different languages on OPAN’s webpage and share with seniors in your communities.

Visit the website for more information

29. VIC | ECCV | Policy Issues Briefs: Impacts of COVID-19 on mental health, employment, social cohesion and ethnic seniors' clubs

The latest ECCV Issue Brief is informed by inputs from CALD seniors’ clubs and ethnic seniors’ federations and highlights the protective role they play in supporting communication and providing emotional and physical health support to their members. ECCV found that while ethnic seniors’ associations are effective community connectors that are sustained by the dedication and commitment of their members, the pandemic has heightened the threats to the organisational survival of many. 

30. VIC | INQUIRING | Have Your Say Over The Future Of The Gig Economy

On-demand workers, businesses and Victorians who use platforms for goods and services are being asked for their views on a way forward for the ever-growing gig economy.

More Australians than ever before are relying on online platforms to buy goods and services – and that means more Australians are undertaking on-demand work.

It also found that platform work is far more prevalent in Australia than previously thought, and as the economic impacts of coronavirus demonstrate, it’s casual workers who are often the first to be let go.

For more information or to have your say on the recommendations, visit engage.vic.gov.au/inquiry-on-demand-workforce.

31. NZ | Talking to Kids about Coronavirus

Science educator Michelle Dickinson, one of New Zealand’s most recognised scientists, has made a 4min video for parents on how to talk to their kids about Coronavirus.

32. AUST | Coronavirus hotline

  • Coronavirus hotline: If you are concerned, call the coronavirus hotline on 1800 675 398 (24 Hours).
  • If you are an NDIS participant you can also call the national hotline on 1800 020 080.
  • Information and referrals for people with disability and their supporters about Coronavirus: Contact the Disability Information Helpline on 1800 634 787. 
  • If you are deaf, or have a hearing or speech impairment, you can also call the National Relay Service on 133 677.
  • Interpreting service: If you need an interpreter, call TIS National on 131 450.
  • Testing locations: Find a testing location near you.
  • Call-to-Test-at-Home service, providing in-home coronavirus testing to Victorians who would otherwise be unable to get tested, call the DHHS Coronavirus hotline on 1800 675 398.
  • Triple Zero: Please keep Triple Zero (000) for emergencies only.
 

33. AUST | Helpers and Reliable Sources Along the Way

 

34. Acknowledgment to Sources

This is a consolidated account of information current at time of issuance, sourced, collated and provided by Victorian Jewish Community COVID-19 Taskforce, Ethnic Communities' Council of Victoria, Buddhist Council of Victoria, various Government Authorities, community organisations and public domain, received with gratitude.

Best wishes for skilful collaborations, less Suffering, causes for less Suffering, Good Health and Time to Enjoy it.

Bye bye to Essentialists for now, please leave to attend to the essential work. That is all from GEIFN's caretaker at this time.


35. Bye bye to Essentialists

Thankyou for responding to the crisis as best you can to keep us ticking along and keeping us safe, received with gratitude. Us non-essentialists will endeavour to manage our expection of miracles and  do our best to follow rules and stay out of the way. Contact your closest friendly non-essentialist if you need anything that can be done remotely. Bye bye to Essentialists for now, please leave to attend to the essential work. That is all from GEIFN's caretaker at this time.


36. Self-Isolators, Non-Essentials And The Homebound

Let us cheer on the global scientists, medical fraternity, authorities and essentialists racing across the clock separately and together in new found ways, to find a cure, manage the situation, and if not, create mass-producable innoculation.

Meanwhile, if with a surplus of time, this and the following is offered. Discuss with sincerity. Deny untruth. Dismiss unuseful. Accept useful. Adapt to change. Adopt least effort most benefit. Adept with sharing. Enjoy throughout. As each case may be. Round. And again. Or not.

LAA | RAISING-FUNDS | to keep Lentil As Anything welcoming, training and feeding the disadvantaged

[Edited extract from public address]

Lentil As Anything is facing its biggest financial challenge to date, needing to raise $150,000 by the end of October, or face going into administration, and likely closing our doors forever.

2020 has been a whirlwind year for us all, but it also marks Lentil As Anything’s 20th anniversary. Twenty years since Shanaka Fernando dared us to embark on this crazy adventure that began as a little restaurant in St. Kilda that invited people to sit down at a table and have a meal together. No matter where they were from, or what their financial situation was, everybody was welcome, and no prices were set. At this little restaurant you could pay-as-you-feel; a new concept operating purely on trust and generosity, and endorsing inclusion and social fairness.

Today, in the midst of a global pandemic, and serious financial difficulty, the generosity of Lentil As Anything has not waivered. Over the past six months we have been able to feed thousands of people in need – through our restaurants in Melbourne and Sydney, and various food relief projects. 
We refuse to step away from our pay-as-you-feel concept that defines us. However, along with serious monetary shortfalls and large historic debt, we cannot keep up.

Lentilian Anonymous is organizing this fundraiser on behalf of Lentil As Anything Ltd. Donations are 100% tax deductible.

To read more or donate online through GoFundMe

VMC | UPDATING | Metropolitan Melbourne on Easing coronavirus (COVID-19) restrictions | Sunday 27 September 2020 | from midnight

[Edited extract from public address]

The Victorian Government has announced that metropolitan Melbourne will move to the Second Step in the roadmap for reopening from 11:59pm on Sunday 27 September. 

This Step will see the curfew lift in Metropolitan Melbourne from 5am on Monday 28 September. There will be higher on the spot fines for breaching rules about visitors to your home and outdoor gatherings.

There are still only 4 reasons to leave your home:
  • shopping for food and essential items
  • exercise and outdoor activity
  • permitted work and study, 
  • and caregiving. 
You must continue to stay within 5km of your home for shopping and exercise.

What is changing?

A reduction in the number of coronavirus (COVID-19) cases in Melbourne in recent weeks has occurred faster than predicted, allowing for some small changes:

Education and childcare
  • Childcare is open to all children.
  • All primary school students, VCE and VCAL students (including Year 10 students in VCE) and specialist school students will return to their schools for learning from October 12.
Ceremonies and special occasions
  • Religious gatherings and ceremonies can take place outdoors with 5 people and 1 faith leader next to a place of worship.
  • Weddings can take place outdoor with a maximum of 5 attendees including the couple and two witnesses. The celebrant is not included in the group of 5.
  • A person may now attend the resting place (a cemetery or columbarium) of a deceased relative for remembering a key milestone (e.g birthday, death anniversary etc). The 5km rule does not apply, but you must stay within metropolitan Melbourne. Gathering limits of 5 people from 2 households apply.
Social
  • Public gatherings of up to 5 people from a maximum of 2 households can meet outdoors for social interaction, exercise or recreation (infants under 12 months of age are not included in the cap) for a maximum of 2 hours within 5 km of their home.

Shopping and services
  • Families and households are able to shop together, but only once a day.
  • Real estate inspections are allowed at a residential property or display home with one agent and one prospective purchaser plus one person from an existing household or intimate partner.
  • Non-urgent dental services can resume.

Face masks
  • You will now be required to wear a face mask whenever you leave home, covering your nose and mouth. Face coverings such as a scarf, bandana or face shield are no longer permitted.
When will we move to the next step?
The Victorian Government has announced that metropolitan Melbourne will move to the Third Step as soon as the 14 day daily average of new cases is less than five, with movement between steps spaced at least 3 weeks apart. The October 26 date no longer applies.

Read more details on what is allowed under the new restrictions
Read the full 27/9 Statement from Premier Daniel Andrews

MORE:
Victorian Multicultural Commission (VMC)
Address: Level 3, 1 Macarthur Street,  Melbourne VIC 3000
Tel: (03) 7005 1267
Email: contact@vmc.vic.gov.au

S2B | INAUGURAL | Heads High Art Competition | Entries open now until 9 October 2020

[Edited extract from public address]

Whether you’re an established or emerging artist, newly arrived migrant or have been here for a while, we invite you to enter this exciting Heads High Art Show 2020.

Space2b is excited to announce the Heads High Art Show and Competition.
Think mini-Archibald, but with our very own local heroes and Celebrities!

Have you ever wanted to paint your favourite Celebrity or Local Hero?
Well now’s your chance!
Choose from the list of Celebrity images on our website or choose your own local hero.

Prize money:
$1,200 to be won:
  • First $600
  • 2nd $350
  • 3rd $250
Selection: Top 40 Finalists will be selected by a Judging Panel and notified by Tues 24 November 2020.

Heads High Exhibition: Monday 1 December 2020 – 30 January 2021

Artwork Submissions
Paintings submitted: by 13 November
Digital submissions: Will be accepted for judging up until Tuesday 17 November, 2020
Finalists notified by Tuesday 24 November

Finalist Artwork Delivery for Installation
To ArtSpace Gallery on Saturday 28 & Monday 30 November, 11am-2pm
All finalists’ artworks will appear on the Space2b website

Where: Space2b ArtSpace Gallery, 144 Chapel St, St Kilda

Cost: $25.00 non-refundable admin fee + 25% commission on sales

Registration:
Close Friday 9 October 2020. Register online through Humanitix
Note: Registrations will not be accepted after this date

Support our artists, designers and makers: shop online!

Together we make a difference!

MORE:
Space2b Social Design (S2b)
Address: 144 Chapel Street, St Kilda Melbourne, Vic 3182 Australia
Email: shop@space2b.com.au

Proudly supported by Windsor Community Bendigo Bank and City of Port Phillip

VMC | UPDATING | Community with Business Support Fund, translated materials on social bubbles, workers support and more… | Thursday 24 September 2020

[Edited extract from public address]

This week a series of ten racism information sessions concluded, delivered in partnership with the Victorian Equal Opportunity and Human Rights Commission (VEOHRC), aimed at helping Victorians better understand and exercise their rights when it comes to racism, racial and religious discrimination and vilification.

Message from the Chairperson

We have had an overwhelming response to these sessions. There is clearly a strong interest from multicultural communities to learn more about their rights and take action against racism.

My sincere thanks to The Hon. Ros Spence MP, Minister for Multicultural Affairs, VEOHRC, Victoria Police, the multicultural legal networks and partner organisations who supported the various sessions.

I'm pleased to let you know that we are now exploring options for more sessions with more communities.

Today we're sharing new in-language audio assets and social tiles to clarify the guidelines around social bubbles and worker support options. Presented in the form of conversations, the audio is available in Mandarin, Greek and Vietnamese to begin with. We are interested in any feedback you may have on this new format.

We're also sharing links to translated social media posts on current restrictions, information on the inclusions and eligibility for the Victorian Government's $3 billion package of funding to support businesses and sole traders affected by coronavirus (COVID-19) restrictions and the Working for Victoria Youth Employment Program.

Other opportunities that may be of interest this week include the Pride Events and Festivals fund, which is now accepting applications, online workshops for VCE students impacted by the coronavirus (COVID-19) restrictions.

Finally, we've already received some excellent nominations for this year’s Victorian Multicultural Awards for Excellence. Nominations close Sunday 11 October 2020.

Stay well and look out for each other,
Viv Nguyen, Chairperson

Translated materials: easing of restrictions

Our cases numbers are going down, but there’s still work to do. As we begin to ease restrictions, it’s important that everyone knows the rules, and how to keep themselves and their community safe.

In this pack, you’ll find in-language materials that explain what’s going on in simple, day-to-day language. You’ll hear conversations between families about what a ‘social bubble’ is, and a chat between co-workers to understand the payments available for people who are isolating and can’t work.
Download and share now

Translated materials: current restrictions

With the steps to reopening taking place in a staggered approach, it is important that everyone checks in regularly with official information for all of the details affecting Victorians. It's important that everyone practices COVIDsafe behaviours and follows the rules. The Victorian Government has launched a new campaign in 55 community languages reminding people that restrictions will be in place for some time.
Download and share now

Business Support Fund

The Victorian Government has announced more than $3 billion to support businesses and sole traders who continue to be affected by coronavirus (COVID-19) restrictions. This is the largest economic support package in Victoria’s history. To find out more about the support package and find out if you're eligible to apply for a grant, go to: www.business.vic.gov.au
Visit Business Victoria's website

Working for Victoria Youth Employment

The Working for Victoria Youth Employment Program is an opportunity for young people to gain experience in the Victorian public service. Up to 800 young people will have the chance to get a ‘foot in the door’ and develop skills for the future. The Youth Employment Program is part of the Working for Victoria initiative, which helps Victorians, including people who have lost their jobs as a result of coronavirus (COVID-19), find paid work that supports our community.
Find out more about Working for Victoria

Pride Events and Festivals Fund

Do you have an exciting idea for an activity that connects LGBTIQ+ Victorians?
Organisations can now apply for grants of up to $10,000 to run such initiatives, through the Victorian Government’s Pride Events and Festivals Fund 2020-21 Connection and Accessibility Grants. All funded activities must be offered virtually, held in line with coronavirus (COVID-19) restrictions, and meaningfully include people living with a disability.
Find out more and apply

Workshops for VCE students

If you work with VCE students or their families in the Flemington/North Melbourne area who have been impacted by coronavirus (COVID-19) restrictions, please pass on the details of these online workshops, provided by the Department of Education and Training and Inner Melbourne African Australian Partnership (IMAAP), a Victorian African Communities Action Plan Initiative (VACAP) homework club provider.
Find out more

Nominate a diversity hero today

Do you know someone who deserves to be recognised for their outstanding efforts to strengthen multiculturalism in Victoria? Nominate them for an award! The Victorian Multicultural Awards for Excellence recognise the outstanding achievements of people and organisations who strengthen multiculturalism across 15 categories. Nominations close Sunday 11 October 2020.
Find out more and nominate

Coronavirus hotline

  • Coronavirus hotline: If you are concerned, call the coronavirus hotline on 1800 675 398 (24 Hours).
  • Interpreting service: If you need an interpreter, call TIS National on 131 450.
  • Testing locations: Find a testing location near you.
  • Triple Zero: Please keep Triple Zero (000) for emergencies only.

MORE:

Victorian Multicultural Commission (VMC)
Address: Level 3, 1 Macarthur Street, Melbourne VIC 3000
Tel: (03) 9651 5901
Email: contact@vmc.vic.gov.au
Website: www.multiculturalcommission.vic.gov.au

ICM | GATHERING | in Friendship, Inner and Outer Friendship | Sunday 27 September 2020 | 6-6.45pm

[Edited extract from public address]

Join online an inclusive Interspiritual Gathering, for prayer, music, poetry, and the wisdom of the great traditions.

Our Guest Speaker is Murshida Nuria Daly, International Sufi Movement in Australia, who will speak on The Spirit of Guidance as Friend, sharing wisdom from the Sufi tradition.

Where: Online. A Zoom link will be forwarded upon registration.
Cost: Free
Bookings: Register online

MORE:
The Interfaith Centre of Melbourne
Address: PO Box 18335, Collins Street East, Melbourne Vic 8003 Australia

WIRE | PROVIDING | free generalist information, support and referral service for women, non-binary and gender-diverse people

[Edited extract from public address]

Free support, referral and information for all Victorian women, nonbinary and gender-diverse people.

Commonly arising issues include:
WIRE stands for Women’s Information and Referral Exchange Inc, although we have now extended our service to respond to the needs of non-binary and gender-diverse people as well. We are the only Victoria-wide free generalist information, support and referral service run by women and non-binary people for women, non-binary and gender-diverse people.

A just and inclusive society where all people can thrive.

MORE:
Women’s Information and Referral Exchange (WIRE)
Telephone Support Line on 1300 134 130 (available until 5pm) 
Text chat is available (from 9.30am to 4.30pm)

GEIFN | AWAKENING | Peace in Uncertain Times | Monday 21 September 2020


ACKNOWLEDGING

We acknowledge traditional inhabitants of Cities of Port Phillip and Glen Eira are the Boon Wurrung and Wurundjeri peoples of the Kulin Nation. Respect is offered to past, present and future elders of all spiritual traditions. May we find together a generous way to accommodate those in need of refuge. Let us be cool, strive individually and together to overcome inequality, violence, disengagement, tragedy and injustice wherever it may be. Let us honour, savor and enjoy results of mindful effort so more thrive peacefully with less effort in our place called home.

[This is a curated presentation from information in public domain.]


COMMEMORATING | United Nations International Day of Peace | 21 September

The International Day of Peace was established in 1981 by the United Nations General Assembly. Two decades later, in 2001, the General Assembly unanimously voted to designate the Day as a period of non-violence and cease-fire.

The United Nations invites all nations and people to honour a cessation of hostilities during the Day, and to otherwise commemorate the Day through education and public awareness on issues related to peace.

COVID-19 is a global health crisis unlike any other — one that is spreading human suffering, destabilizing the global economy and upending the lives of billions of people around the globe. Vulnerable populations in countries with weaker health systems, facing existing humanitarian crises are at great risk. The United Nations is committed to ensuring all people have access to all the tools to defeat COVID-19. Global solidarity is not only a moral imperative, it is in everyone’s interests.

Read More about UN International Day of Peace 21 September




UPDATING | UNHCR’s Forcibly Displaced People Figures at a Glance

At least 79.5 million people around the world have been forced to flee their homes. Among them are nearly 26 million refugees, around half of whom are under the age of 18.

There are also millions of stateless people, who have been denied a nationality and lack access to basic rights such as education, health care, employment and freedom of movement.

At a time when 1 per cent of the world’s population have fled their homes as a result of conflict or persecution.

As of 31 May 2020 UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) employed 17,324 people, of whom around nearly 90 per cent are based in the field.

UNHCR works in 135 countries, with personnel based in a mixture of regional and branch offices and sub and field offices. Our teams work hard to help the displaced, specializing in a wide range of disciplines, including legal protection, administration, community services, public affairs and health.

Funded almost entirely by voluntary contributions, with 86 per cent from governments and the European Union. Three per cent comes from other inter-governmental organizations and pooled funding mechanisms, while a further 10 per cent is from the private sector, including foundations, corporations and the public. Additionally, UNHCR receives a limited subsidy (one per cent) from the UN budget for administrative costs, and accept in-kind contributions, including items such as tents, medicines and trucks.



RECONCILING | If we can imagine the injustice, then we can imagine its opposite. And we can have justice.




RECONCILIATION | Imagine 





ENGAGING | Privilege, Inequality, Equity and Society


The girl who lost her face: A story of courage and friendship in a remarkable clinic for victims of acid attacks in Bangladesh. Many of the staff are survivors of acid attacks themselves. Giles Duley, a journalist injured on assignment in Afghanistan several years ago visited the clinic in the capital Dhaka to tell the story of a young victim rebuilding her life and the team helping her.

They are the children of criminals. Their parents are doing time in Chinese prisons, some serving life sentences for horrific crimes. With no one to care for them and nowhere to go, Sun Village, a shelter in Beijing, takes them in

Millions of refugees travelled to Germany, among them thousands of LGBT people. They're fleeing not only conflict, but persecution in countries like Iraq and Syria where being gay can get you killed. Shaunagh Connaire discovered that for some gay refugees the hatred and danger they faced in the Middle East has pursued them all the way to Germany.

Filipino nurses make up an outsized portion of the nursing workforce. About one-third of all foreign-born nurses in the US are Filipino. Since 1960, 150,000 Filipino nurses have come to work in the US. And that’s because over the past century the US built a pipeline that draws nurses from the Philippines every time it faces a shortage. This system began in the early 20th century when the US invaded and colonized the Philippines and lives on through today. 




SUPPORTING | Global Engagement in Friendlier Neighbourhoods 

Consider obtaining and distributing from the growing range of collateral below. (Any receipts go towards production costs and ongoing service provision.)



Photocards

Reconciliation? "If we can imagine the injustice, then we can imagine its opposite. And we can have justice." The Getup Mob, From Little Things Big Things Grow https://youtu.be/8zXFmJmrj0s
High quality high gloss 1 sided.
Size: 15x10cm
Pack 10
Cost: $5 until stocks last
Includes Postage to Australian Addresses


Badges

For equity: YES I am
Size: 56mm diametre, safety-pin clasp
Pack 20
Cost: $40 until stocks last
Includes Postage to Australian Addresses



Coffee Mugs

View 1: Lost Piece? 
View 2: Found Peace: If it was easy, everybody would be doing it.
White ceramic 325ml mug with wrap-around image
Cost: $20 ea until stocks last
Includes Postage to Australian Addresses


SHARING | Downloadable PDF Statements



SPONSORED | by Same Difference Equals



DEDICATING MERIT | and Best Wishes for Less Suffering with Medicine Buddha Mantra


MORE:

Glen Eira Interfaith Network (GEIFN)
Caretaker Carey
Tel: 0438 371 488

UN | ASPIRING | International Day of Peace: Shaping Peace Together | 21 September

 [Edited extract from public address]

Each year the International Day of Peace is observed around the world on 21 September. The UN General Assembly has declared this as a day devoted to strengthening the ideals of peace, through observing 24 hours of non-violence and cease-fire.

The 2020 theme for the International Day of Peace is Shaping Peace Together. This year, it has been clearer than ever that we are not each other’s enemies. Rather, our common enemy is a tireless virus that threatens our health, security and very way of life. COVID-19 has thrown our world into turmoil and forcibly reminded us that what happens in one part of the planet can impact people everywhere.

In March, UN Secretary-General António Guterres called on all warring parties to lay down their weapons and focus on the battle against this unprecedented global pandemic. While the message is intended for armed parties, solidarity and cooperation across borders, sectors and generations are also needed to win this new fight against the worst public health crisis of our time.

For the United Nations, 2020 was already meant to be a year of listening and learning. To mark its 75th anniversary, the UN has invited millions of people worldwide to join UN75, the largest and furthest-reaching global conversation on building the peaceful and prosperous future that we want.

As we struggle to defeat COVID-19, your voice is more important than ever. In these difficult times of physical distancing, this International Day of Peace will be dedicated to fostering dialogue and collecting ideas. The world will be invited to unite and share thoughts on how to weather this storm, heal our planet and change it for the better. Even though we may not be able to stand next to each other, we can still dream together.

Celebrate the day

Spread compassion, kindness and hope in the face of the pandemic. Stand together with the UN against attempts to use the virus to promote discrimination or hatred. Join us so that we can shape peace together.

Background

The International Day of Peace was established in 1981 by the United Nations General Assembly. Two decades later, in 2001, the General Assembly unanimously voted to designate the Day as a period of non-violence and cease-fire.

The United Nations invites all nations and people to honour a cessation of hostilities during the Day, and to otherwise commemorate the Day through education and public awareness on issues related to peace.

Read More about UN International Day of Peace 21 September

VICU | COMMEMORATING | UN International Peace Day Forum | Monday 21 September 2020 | 5-6pm

 [Edited extract from public address, first published 16/9]

Victorian leaders from faith and non-faith backgrounds are coming together in unity on 21 September 2020 for a virtual UN Peace Day event.  

Accompanied by gentle guided commentary and music, each leader will light a candle for peace and hold a meditative space. All are welcome to join this event, so relevant to these times, celebrating and reinforcing compassion, courage and hope within the community.

The panellists are:

  • Mr Craig Foster, Sports Analyst and Former National Football Captain (Socceroos), Refugee and Human Rights Ambassador, Amnesty International, Advisory Board Member of the Australian Institute of Human Rights
  • Ms Mazita Marzuki, Consul General of Malaysia, Former Deputy Director General, Southeast Asia Regional Centre for Counter Terrorism, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Malaysia
  • Mr Charles Allen APM, Director Partnerships, Institute for Economics for Peace. Peace builder, former policeman, and board member with various not-for-profit social organisations
  • Ms Rohini Kattadath, General Manager, Immigration Museum, 2015 Telstra Victorian Business Womens’ Award Winner
  • Associate Professor Tom Clark, VU Academic and Researcher, President of the Australasian Universities Language and Literature Association (AULLA).

The event will include an address by the newly appointed Deputy Chair of the Victorian Multicultural Commission, Mr Bwe Thay, himself a refugee who came to Australia in search of a peaceful place to live.

Find out more and book

MORE:
Victoria University (VICU)
Postal address: PO Box 14428, Melbourne, VIC 8001, Australia
Street address: Footscray Park Campus, Ballarat Road (between Hoadley Court and Mills Close), Footscray 3011
Tel: +61 3 9919 4000

A collaboration with Victoria University, Victorian Multicultural Commission, Institute for Economics & Peace and Australian Intercultural Society.