Elderly community connected

Wyndham Civic Centre. Photo by Damjan Janevski. 255196_02

Just weeks after announcing its aged care services would end, Wyndham council is increasing its investment in the community connector program to advocate and support elderly residents.

The community connector program, which has been running since February, 2021, features a team of council staff who work with closely with residents and carers to find and connect them with local service options.

The program supports approximately 4000 residents per year to access the services and support they need to stay living at home, active and connected with their community.

Wyndham mayor Jennie Barrera said extra staff would be added to the program across 2024/25 as part of an improved service offering for Wyndham’s older population.

“We are proud of our efforts to ensure that Wyndham is a place where everyone can age well and be active in the community,” Cr Barerra said.

“The community connector program is an important service provides residents with access to the information, support and services that they need, when and where they need them, helping to ensure that no one falls through the gaps.”

Cr Barrera said stronger advocacy on behalf of elderly residents and ensuring their needs were considered during infrastructure planning, were other priorities for council.

She also confirmed that events such as the seniors festival, seniors directory and seniors expo would continue.

Late last month Wyndham council announced that in response to the federal government’s proposed aged care reforms, it would be ending aged care services at the end of this year and transferring them to a mixture of community and private providers.

Council said these changes reflected feedback they received during community consultation on the future of aged care in Wyndham conducted between November 2023 and January 2024.

Cr Barrera said this feedback also informed their decision to enhance the community connector program.

“The results showed that 29 per cent of respondents want council to prioritise helping older residents to understand the aged care system and connect them to services, and that is exactly what we’re doing,” she said.

Details: www.wyndham.vic.gov.au/communityconnector