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Latest News & Updates

Latest News & Updates

Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced a $537 million funding package for aged care on Monday. The package includes $496.3 million to fund an additional 10,000 home care packages, which will be strongly weighted towards Level 3 and Level 4 packages. 5,500 packages will be rolled out from 1 December.

Centacare Executive Director Peter Selwood said the funding injection was good news for older Australians who were on the waitlist for a home care package or who are on a lower level package than what they had been assessed for.

“The new funding will help speed up access to in-home care and ensure older Australians receive high-quality services when and where they need them,” said Mr Selwood.

“Centacare is committed to ensuring its 7,800 aged care clients live healthy, safe and independent lives in their own homes and communities.

“We support older Australians to live a purposeful life, which means staying connected in their community, getting involved in the things that are important to them and building or maintaining their confidence and capacity to live independently for as long as possible”.

Mr Selwood urged those who receive a letter from My Aged Care to contact their service provider.

“That way we can increase your services and support in line with your level of funding,” said Mr Selwood.

Those who are waiting for a home care package may be able to access subsidised services through the Commonwealth Home Support Program (CHSP). This can include personal care, domestic assistance, home safety and maintenance, short breaks, social activities, health and wellness and support for family and carers.  

Call 1300 236 822 or visit for further information 

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Working towards an accessible future is everyone’s responsibility. Centacare Moreton Bay is working in partnership with Moreton Bay Regional Council and local surf lifesaving clubs to enable everyone, regardless of their age or ability, to access the sand and water at the most popular beaches in the regions.

The accessible beaches initiative will be trialled at Woorim Beach, Bribie Island until May 2020. 40 metres of beach matting has been installed and two beach wheelchairs are available for free hire through Bribie Island Surf Club.

The matting enables people who might ordinarily find it difficult or impossible to travel over sand, such as wheelchair users, seniors and parents with prams, to access the beach. Beach wheelchairs enhance the beach experience by allowing users to travel along the shoreline and into shallow water. The matting is available seven days a week and the wheelchairs are available every weekend and on public holidays.

Find out more about the trial

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Shirley, 87, is one busy lady. She looks after her husband of 65 years, Keith, who has dementia. She has nine grandchildren, five great-grandchildren and tends to their three-bedroom Corinda home, which they’ve shared for 50 years.

“Keith likes to have me close by, which can make it difficult to run errands and get the housework done,” said Shirley. “It’s because of the support we receive from Centacare that we are able to stay living here in our home.”

Through a Home Care Package, Keith and Shirley receive funding for ‘flexible respite’ – a combination of services provided in the home, in the community and/or at a centre.

“Centacare encourages us to choose the services that will help us live our best lives, in the home we love,” said Shirley. “A support worker comes to our house seven days a week to shower Keith and every Tuesday he goes to Centacare’s Jamboree Heights Learning and Leisure Hub, where he meets up with his mates. I don’t know what they talk about, but that doesn’t matter. He enjoys spending time with likeminded people. He also does a balance class, which he’s very good at. I’m not surprised – he was a champion lifesaver in his day.”


On Wednesdays, Keith enjoys getting out in the community. Centacare picks him up from his house and takes him to lunch or another planned outing or activity.


“It’s good for both of us. It gives me time to attend to the errands I need to as well as space to enjoy the things I love like sewing and gardening.”


“The team at Centacare are wonderful. I recently had a fall and broke my tailbone. They organised an occupational therapist and a walker for me and helped me with the housework, taking on the things I couldn’t do like vacuuming and hanging out the sheets. They also built a ramp to improve our access to the house and when the water heater broke they installed a new one.

“The care and support we receive is personalised according to our needs – it’s all about keeping us living well here in our own home, which we love.





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Corinda residents Mary Dann, 75, and Shirley Hamilton, 87, love being ‘online’. They use Facebook to keep in touch with family and Shirley streams music through her iPad.

Today, during Queensland Senior’s Week (17-25 August), Mary and Shirley further expanded their skills at a special technology workshop held at Centacare’s Jamboree Heights Learning and Lifestyle Hub.

More than 20 Centacare clients over the age of 65 enjoyed online games, competitions and hands-on activities in a fun and supportive environment aimed at promoting digital literacy among people in their later years.

Centacare Service Delivery Manager Cheree Pattison said many older people were finding real benefits from being online, including increased access to information, services, social connections and support networks.  

“Senior’s Week is all about providing opportunities for older people to share and learn new experiences, which aligns with our philosophy at Centacare,” said Cheree.

“Age doesn’t limit a person’s ability to live a full and purposeful life. Our clients want to live out their later years in their own homes and communities, doing what they love. It’s our job to ensure they have plenty of opportunities to build their capacity and confidence in the areas that matter to them most.”

Mary lost her husband two years ago and Shirley’s husband has dementia but, with support from Centacare, they are able to live well, with a sense of purpose and independence. Mary discovered a love of painting at the age of 60 and volunteers with Centacare’s music group every second Monday. Shirley is part of a gardening group and is a keen embroiderer.

“You don’t know what you don’t know,” said Mary. “That’s why I’m always willing to give things a go. I never want to stop learning.”

Centacare learning and lifestyle hubs offer a range of activities for people over 65 including yoga, tai chi, music, dancing, drama, art, horticulture and day trips. Phone 1300 236 822 to find out more.

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Help is available to support you through your NDIS journey. From understanding how the scheme could work for you and what information or evidence you might need to provide, to preparing for your planning meeting, or questioning decisions about eligibility or what’s included in your plan, Centacare can help you.

In each edition of NDIS News we help answer your questions about how the NDIS will affect you and the types of help available to you. If you have other questions about the NDIS, please phone 1300 236 822 or contact your SDM.

Here’s some of the questions we often hear…

I haven’t received Support Coordination in my plan. Who can help me unpack my plan?

Your Local Area Coordinator (LAC) can help you understand what’s in your plan, what the different parts of your plan mean, what you can spend your funding on and who can help you start using your plan to achieve your goals. If you live in the Fraser Coast or Burnett regions, contact APM on 1800 276 276. For all other South East Queensland regions, contact Carers Queensland on 1800 242 636.

My plan is plan managed but I haven’t engaged a plan manager. Where can I find one?

Your Plan Manager must be an NDIS registered provider. Your Local Area Coordinator can help you find NDIS registered providers or you can search under ‘Provider Finder’ on the NDIS myplace portal. You might want to research providers on the internet, check reviews, get advice from friends or family and speak with different providers either face-to-face or over the phone before you agree to work with them.

I haven’t received funding for transport in my plan. Can I access transport supports by using my Core Supports budget?

In most cases, you can use your Core Supports budget flexibly across any of its four support categories. Unfortunately, there are instances where you do not have flexibility in your funding, and this includes transport funding. If you haven’t received funding for transport in your plan, you cannot access transport supports using your Core Supports budget. Contact your SDM to discuss how you can negotiate funding for transport in your plan.

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A new social enterprise is providing NDIS participants with a launch pad to try new things and see what’s possible.

Clients at Centacare’s Iluka Learning and Lifestyle Hub at Caloundra create innovative designs using succulents and recycled materials. They sell their designs in pop-up shops and invest the proceeds back into the business, ensuring Project New Life continues to flourish as a financially sustainable social enterprise.

The project has launched with the assistance of Courtney Duvergier, who has been part of Centacare’s Sunshine Coast team for 15 years. “This project was conceived of and created by people with a disability, for people with a disability. It puts them in the driver’s seat and is something they can take ownership of and run themselves, with support from us where needed,” said Courtney. 

“A local green thumb hosted a workshop with the group at her house. She showed them how to plant succulents and how to care for them. They really embraced the opportunity to create something special. Straight away, I knew we were onto a winner.

“That was two years ago. Now it’s a thriving venture involving almost 30 clients. Everyone has a role to play, whether it’s planting, sourcing supplies, working at the pop-up shops, record-keeping or delivering stock to local businesses.

“Our designers work every Thursday morning. They choose their pot, plant and decorative materials such as coloured pebbles. Our wood-working group contribute as well, making timber display stands, tables and trolleys.”

A highlight for Courtney is seeing clients connect with the broader community, particularly those who’ve never had that opportunity. “They’re out there engaging with people from all walks of life. Some clients are supported to develop the social and communication skills needed to confidently interact with the public. We role play conversations and different scenarios until they feel ready to give it a go,” she said.

“Project New Life goes beyond supporting people to achieve their goals. It acts as a launch pad for them to try new things and see what’s possible. I love walking alongside clients on that journey.”

Project New Life has monthly pop-up shops at Stockland Caloundra and Stockland Birtinya. Designs can also be purchased from Red Hot Chilli Pepper, Villa Verde Living and Coffee Cat on Kings Beach. Contact your SDM or phone 1300 236 822 to find out more about learning and lifestyle activities in your area.

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You might be aware that the NDIA sets the price for some supports included in a participant’s NDIS plan. These prices are reviewed annually to help providers maximise choice for participants and develop new, innovative services and products.

The NDIA has released its annual price review for 2019-20, which outlines increased price limits across a number of supports. The new prices came into effect on 1 July 2019. 

What do the price changes mean for NDIS participants?

Service agreements – Some participants have asked us if they need to establish a new service agreement with us. Centacare service agreements allow for price adjustments so, if you have a service agreement with Centacare, this will not change.

Adjustments to NDIS plans – From 1 July the funding in your existing NDIS plan should have increased in line with indexation and the NDIA price changes. This means that participants should still receive the same volume of supports they did prior to the price changes.

Participants and their families and carers are encouraged to review the NDIA’s annual price review page for an outline of all changes and to access links to the NDIS Price Guide 2019–20 and NDIS Support Catalogue 2019–20.

Disability-related health supports

The COAG Disability Reform Council has agreed that the NDIS will fund a range of disability-related health supports where they are required as part of the participant’s daily life and result directly from the participant’s disability. This includes dysphagia supports, diabetic management supports, continence supports, wound and pressure care supports and more.

From 1 October 2019, participants can access these supports through their NDIS plan. If you are due for an NDIS plan review, make sure you let your planner know if you require any of these supports.

Further information as well as a list of NDIS funded disability-related health supports is available on the Department of Social Services website.

If you have questions, please phone 1300 236 822 or contact your SDM.

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Bob, 76, and his wife Noela, 74, came to live in Kingaroy 18 months ago.

They had mixed feelings about leaving their close circle of friends in Gympie, but wanted to be closer to their daughter and grandchildren. Bob also has Parkinson’s disease and was finding it difficult to manage their six acres of land.

“The best thing I did when we arrived in Kingaroy was give Centacare a call,” said Bob.

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It was a dream come true for Centacare clients Jessica, 18, and Lachlan, 22, when they performed to sold-out audiences at Home of the Arts (HOTA) on the Gold Coast last week.

As part of Centacare’s inclusive theatre company Running Duck, they joined 16 other performers in the ensemble’s first major production, ‘An Evening at the Pink Poodle’. The show celebrates the sixties in Australia and included a live performance from legendary pop icon Normie Rowe, who rehearsed with the group.

Jessica was born to perform. While she took part in various eisteddfods at primary school, she couldn’t find the right opportunity to pursue her interest through high school. “Running Duck makes me feel confident and strong,” said Jessica. “I love the interaction and the opportunity to talk out loud to others without being judged. I’ve made great friends and I love getting into costume!”

Lachlan is pursuing his dream to speak out for people like himself. He joined Running Duck to develop the confidence and public speaking skills he needs for his advocacy work, which includes co-chairing the House with No Steps Human Rights Committee.  “I want to help people like me and show them that they can do anything they want to,” said Lachlan. “Thanks to Centacare, I have the confidence to stand on a stage and talk about important issues.”

Centacare provides learning and lifestyle services to almost 1000 NDIS participants across South East Queensland. Programs offered on the Gold Coast include street theatre in Currumbin and an after school ‘chill zone’ at Broadbeach.

Phone 1300 236 822 for more information.  

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On 25 June all over the world seafarers celebrate International Day of the Seafarer.

Centacare’s Apostleship of the Sea ministry provides support to seafarers at the Port of Brisbane and through the Stella Maris Centre in Wynnum. Pastoral carer, Barry Guest, who visits seafarers daily on board their ships says ‘loneliness and isolation are a real struggle for many seafarers who spend months at a time away from home.’ ‘As part of the worldwide Apostleship of the Sea ministry, we provide a listening ear and new face to talk to.’

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