Mental Health

As the trusted voice of Aboriginal health and wellbeing in Victoria, VACCHO advocates strongly for access to culturally safe service provision free from stigma and discrimination for all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people living in Victoria. 

Access and Community Linkages project

The Aboriginal National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) Access and Community Linkages project facilitates direct support to community members living with disability and chronic mental health conditions to link them with their communities while accessing the NDIS.

VACCHO supports four Member Aboriginal Community Controlled Organisations (ACCOs) to employ four key Identified Aboriginal staff members, across four different regions in Victoria, known as NDIS Access and Community Linkages workers (or NACL workers).

The four regions will be:

  • Loddon/Mallee (based at Mallee District Aboriginal Services, Swan Hill)
  • Eastern Victoria (based at Dandenong District Aborigines Co-Operative)
  • Western Victoria (based at Ballart and District Aboriginal Co-Operative)
  • Outer Eastern Victoria (based at Ramahyuck, Morwell and Sale)

The Aboriginal NACL workers will work across their regions, visiting Communities on a regular basis.

The NACL workers will assist in a culturally safe manner to Community members by:

  • Providing assistance to link in with Community.
  • Providing assistance to access the NDIS which includes:
    • Collating of evidence of disability
    • Help to complete NDIS access documents
    • Navigating the NDIS access process
    • Navigating the NDIS planning process
    • Advocacy on the NDIS access matters.
  • Facilitating workshops to increase Community awareness on how to get support for people with a disability or a chronic mental health condition.
  • Sourcing alternative supports if not eligible for the NDIS.
  • Coaching and mentoring to foster independence in basic life skills, self-advocacy and to manage personal affairs.
  • Providing general support and encouragement to Community members on their journey to getting NDIS support.
  • Escalating systemic issues preventing Communities from accessing the disability supports they need.
    • The project seeks regular input from a steering committee which includes VACCHO Members, Community members with disability, and other Community stakeholders.

      Key outcomes of the project will be:

      • Community members with disability can attend community events and groups on a regular basis.
      • Adequate support for Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander people with a disability.
      • Increased participation in the NDIS by the Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander Community in Victoria.
      • Increased Community awareness of support frameworks for people with a disability or a chronic mental health condition.
      • Community members become more independent.

      For more information email us or call 03 9411 9411.

    Member enquiries

    Member enquiries

    Enquiries from Members can be made by filling out and submitting the form below. Alternatively, you can email us directly

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    Key documents, submission and position papers.

    2014 – Discussion paper: Needle and Syringe Programs in Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisations
    2012 – Report: Not everyone has that support: An evaluation of a series of harm reduction and AOD awareness activities within Victorian Aboriginal communities