Local unpaid carers who selflessly support their loved ones will receive more support from the Victorian Government to help care for their own wellbeing.

Member for Eastern Victoria Harriet Shing today announced that Gippsland Disability Advocacy Inc would receive $40,000 to connect carers from across the region through formal and informal peer support programs. Baw Baw Shire Council will also receive $39,991 through the program, which will go towards a Carers Group targeting isolated carers from Rawson and Erica. The announced was made as part of Carers Week, which runs from October 10-16.

The funding is part of than $2.6 million for organisations across Victoria to support carers to reconnect when it’s safe to do so through activities like morning teas, bushwalks and virtual cooking classes – as well as information sessions and online forums to support carers from multicultural background to access the right supports.

Across Victoria, more than 736,000 carers give their time and effort to look after a family member or friend who needs them, whether due to chronic disease, mental illness, disability or old age.

Fifty-six organisations will receive grants totalling $1.75 million through the Supporting Carers Locally Grants Program. The grants will help carers access peer support, community support programs and other tailored resources supporting their physical and mental health, and help them connect with family, friends and other carers.

Additionally, five organisations will share in $917,000 through the Statewide Partnership Grants Program, which will support partnerships between carer organisations and other community support organisations to deliver innovative projects that benefit carers across the state.

The five recipient organisations are Little Dreamers, Different Journeys, Ethnic Communities Council of Victoria, Financial Counselling Victoria and Tandem.

Respite is also available to carers through the Support for Carers program, which is accessible during lockdown.

The full list of Supporting Carers Locally Grants Program recipients can be found at:

Quotes attributable to Minister for Disability, Ageing and Carers James Merlino

“Carers do such an incredible job caring for loved ones and it’s critical they get the support and downtime they need to keep themselves well.”

Quote attributable to Parliamentary Secretary for Carers and Volunteers Anthony Carbines

“These programs will provide carers the opportunity to reconnect both online and face-to-face after a challenging 18 months.”

Quote attributable to Member for Eastern Victoria Harriet Shing

“We are supporting carer support groups like Different Journeys and Gippsland Disability Advocacy Inc to continue doing the wonderful work they do, which makes such a difference in the lives of local carers.”