I would like to draw the Committee’s attention to the recent boost of $1.3 million in funding for Home and Community Care services in the ACT. The additional funding will bring the federal government’s contribution to the ACT HACC program to $15.2 million, which represents an increase of 7.9 per cent on the 2009-10 funding.
The HACC program provides a comprehensive, coordinated and integrated range of maintenance and support services to help the frail, the aged, and young people with a disability, and their carers, to continue to live independently in the community. The HACC funding will support a range of services including Meals on Wheels, home care, respite and social programs and community transport. Most importantly, it will help 11,000 vulnerable members of the ACT community.
During my campaign I visited the Marymead Child and Family Centre in Narrabundah to learn about the services this well-known and well-respected Canberra institution provides to the community. Marymead works with single parent families; the unemployed; families struggling with substance abuse, significant breakdown, conflict and violence; or people whose situation is exacerbated by poor and temporary housing issues. So I was delighted to hear Marymead will receive over $26,000 in HACC funding to help it continue to enhance the wellbeing of children, young people and families in times of need.
Tandem Respite is a group that promotes independence and quality of life. Tandem Respite will receive over $23,000 in HACC funding to provide home based support with a support worker in the individual’s or family’s home. Tandem Respite also provides recreational based support through a support worker who takes children and young people out in the community to develop important social skills.
Koomarri, which is based in Phillip in my electorate, assists the disabled and their carers with employment and life skills. Koomarri will receive $144,000 to enhance independent living skills such as cooking, nutrition, health, fitness and computing. Communities@Work, which provides an enormous array of services throughout Canberra and is based in Tuggeranong near my electorate office, will receive $67,000 to buy a new 12-seater bus with wheelchair lifter to transport the frail, aged and disabled to social activities and health services. Other organisations in my electorate that received funding are: Community Options, Australian Red Cross, Community Connections, Community Connections, Just Better Care Community Services and Ngunnawal Aboriginal Corporation.
I commend these organisations for their great work in helping those most in need in the Canberra community. I also commend and thank the Gillard government, particularly the Minister for Mental Health and Ageing, for the HACC funding.