New service for Murrumbidgee

Wellways’ Enhanced Adult Community Living Support Service (EACLSS) is new to the Murrumbidgee region, providing much-needed mental health education and support to rural and regional Australia. The EACLSS program is designed to provide recovery-orientated support to people who have a diagnosis of severe mental illness.

The Wellways team of eight works across the Murrumbidgee Local Health District, a vast area covering 125,561 square kilometres and 29 local government areas. Support workers assist individuals and families, across the region, to live meaningful and satisfying lives in their communities, which can include managing mental health and wellbeing, participating in community life, accessing employment, education or training, and sustaining accommodation.

The Murrumbidgee team recently participated in mental health awareness activities as part of a month-long program of community events, which included the Brunslea Park Street Mingle, a day for promoting a healthy lifestyle, resilience and confidence. Guest speaker Tiffany Hall (from The Biggest Loser and Gladiators) gave inspiring tips and information. The event provided an excellent opportunity for the Wellways team to meet local people and help de-stigmatise mental illness.

Networking breakfast in Warragul

Mental Health Week in October was the occasion for a networking breakfast at Wellways Warragul to raise awareness of mental health issues with general health service practitioners, including GPs, practice nurses, psychologists and disability support case managers. Two individuals with experience of mental health issues openly shared their personal stories, with a focus on recognising the impact of trauma. They also discussed their experiences of navigating health care services. Their stories were a reminder to all in attendance of the power and strength of the lived experience and the contributions of mental health peers to health service delivery.

Carers’ high tea at Rosedale

The Victorian Rose Tea Rooms—a lovely white weatherboard cottage surrounded by gardens in Rosedale—was the setting for a sumptuous high tea for Gippsland carers enjoying a day’s respite in the picturesque town. Rosedale’s main street delighted carers with its array of fascinating shops, including Rusties Collectables with its memorabilia and nostalgic bric-a-brac, Tarra Valley Preserves, with its locally-produced jams, sauces and pickles, and the Garden Pot Nursery, with its array of rare plants and pots.

Participants praise Wellways General Education Certificate

“This course has made me realise I am not stupid, that I am relevant, that I matter.”

Wellways Certificates II and III in General Education for Adults have been praised by participants for providing structure, boosting confidence and for challenging their comfort zones.

The Wellways RTO team has been thrilled and overwhelmed by the recent outpouring of praise. The RTO team recently visited participants in class to ask them to reflect on the changes that have occurred in their lives since they started their course. Many participants, who have experienced long-term unemployment or who have been early school leavers, are achieving work and study goals well beyond their initial hopes.

“There seems to be a perception that if you are long-term unemployed, there is something wrong with you, that you must be lazy or dumb, or not worthy of employment,” said one participant.

“I know this is not true, and I have the confidence and courage to face this head on, and challenge these assumptions, [and to know] that I am worthy.”

The Certificates II and III in General Education for Adults develop literacy and numeracy skills, while focusing on a vocational pathway. Courses are designed to give people the opportunity to develop skills for employment or further study, to explore areas of interest, and to be engaged in a range of enjoyable projects. A new Certificate III in General Education for Adults has recently been developed in Warragul specifically for the Aboriginal community to support return to work or study.

For further information about the Certificates II and III in General Education for Adults, contact or call Vlasta Tezak-Brown on 0417 484 459.