Aged Care Services

The key programs and services provided as part of VASS Aged Care Services in the Northern and Western Regions are the:

  • Supported Access Project (SAP)
  • Planned Activity Group (PAG)
  • Certificate IV in Hospitality (Patisserie) cooking class groups
  • Volunteer Social Support Program (VSSP)
  • Community Partners Program (CPP)

Supported Access Project (SAP)

The Supported Access Project (SAP) is funded through the Victorian Home and Community Care (HACC) Program to support access for people from CALD backgrounds into and through HACC services.

The key aims of SAP are:

  • to explore and develop mechanisms that will assist Home and Community Care (HACC) eligible people, from Arabic Speaking Background (ASB) communities who require extra support to access and negotiate HACC and other related services
  • to work effectively in the HACC service system to provide specialist cultural knowledge, information and advice, assisting generic agencies in developing culturally appropriate service responses for ASB specific clients.

SAP provides:

  • improved access to a range of services for Arabic and Assyrian Chaldean clients who are eligible for HACC services
  • support for ASB people in need of assistance to negotiate the HACC and related service system
  • strengthens the capacity of VASS in responding to the needs presented to their agency
  • improved generic agency understanding of ASB people, their needs and difficulties in accessing services
  • strengthens the capacity of VASS to further develop the knowledge and skills to participate in the wider service system
  • strengthens the capacity of generic agencies processes to work effectively with VASS and improve access for ASB people.
  • strengthens the capacity of councils and other generic agencies to provide services in response to the needs of ASB people.

Planned Activity Group (PAG)

Funded through a joint Commonwealth and State Program, Home and Community Care (HACC)

The Planned Activity Groups (PAG) aims to develop, implement and evaluate alternate options for the planning and delivery of activities for people from Arabic Speaking Background communities that are eligible for Home and Community Care (HACC).

Laila Houli coordinates a group of women who engage in weekly meetings that take place on Tuesday at the VASS Newport Office. The activities undertaken include: computer training, proper use of medication, city west water tours and various information sessions on living a healthy lifestyle which include sessions on blood pressure, cholesterol, nutrition, diabetes, heart disease and exercise routines such as walking.

CALD Seniors Surfers (ended January 2011)

Funded by the Department of Planning and Community Development

CALD Senior Surfers is a Victorian Government initiative, designed to help the CALD seniors learn how to access and use the internet in their own language, in a supportive community environment. This program was launched in May 2008 at the VASS Newport Office. The program has been very successful and is sustained as an ongoing activity in both the Northern and Western regions, continuing as an activity for both volunteers and clients, with training conducted by three staff and three volunteers. There have been 30 clients and 16 volunteers trained in accessing information in their own language on the internet to assist in making informed decisions on health wellbeing

Volunteers Social Support Program (VSSP)

Volunteers Social Support Program (VSSP) is a Home and Community Care (HACC) Program developed to prevent isolation by providing social links for older people and people with disabilities and carers. The HACC Program is jointly funded by both the Commonwealth and Victorian State Government.

VSSP provides social support and respite for carers of older people of Arabic Speaking Background communities. The VSSP program is comprised of the VASS Hume Assyrian Chaldean Women’s Support Group and the VASS Northern Arabic Women’s Support Group. Both of the groups have comprised a total of 20 volunteers and 50 clients which have contributed more than 6800 volunteer hours during the year.

Certificate IV in Hospitality (Patisserie) under VSSP
Under the VSSP Program two VASS groups engaged with the Australian College of Vocational Education and undertook training within the Certificate IV in Hospitality (Patisserie) course. The nationally accredited cooking classes allowed VASS to use local business to conduct the training, using Ishtar Reception in Broadmeadows and Mahoney Brookwood Reception in Thomastown.

Each group successfully consisted of 22 participants each.


CPP Community Partners Program

Funded by the Australian Government, Department of Health and Ageing.

CPP has been funded by the Department of Health and Ageing since 2006. The program’s aim is to:

  • increase ASB communities access to aged care services through education and by helping them to make informed decisions about available support services.
  • improve the quality of aged care services delivered to ASB communities, by providing resources and assistance to aged care support services, to better enable them to deliver culturally appropriate care.

The following outcomes for CPP were delivered by VASS in this financial year:

  • 33 Elderly women attended three Aged Care facility tours in the South East and 50 elderly women and mothers attended two information sessions on the Safe & Wise Use of Medicine and Managing Pain in the South East region. 60 elderly women and mothers attended four information sessions on the same topic in the North West region.
  • Developed and distributed CPP South East brochure and the same distributed in the North West region, followed by radio programs on the CPP’s expansion into populations of Shepparton and Geelong residents.
  • South East CPP worker has engaged with 3 different groups in the South East region to dicuss issues related to aged people

    For more information please contact VASS Broadmeadows on (03 9359 2861 or email at

    Harmony Day 2012
    Harmony Day is celebrated annually around Australia on the 21st of March. Harmony Day celebrations began in 1999 and has expanded to involve a wide array of the community. VASS hosted a Harmony Day celebration at its Broadmeadows office and the theme for the event was entitled ‘Sport: Play, Engage, Inspire’. The event was accompanied by a range of foods and activities. The event encouraged for all people of different nationalities, languages and ethnicities to come about together. The event began with an Aboriginal smoking ceremony to bless the then new Broadmeadows office.

    The day was a success for VASS, a fun and light hearted event removed from the serious advocacy. VASS was able to maintain close links with other health and social service providers, key members of the ASB and other ethnic communities, as well as welcoming many more people to our services. We hope to continue this success in the coming year.

VASS Representation on Committees, Network Groups and Projects related to Aged Care Services.

  • North West CALD Partnerships (NWCP) executive committee
  • ECCV Aged Care Advisory Group
  • ECCV Elder Abuse Project
  • Community Action Forum North West Melbourne Division of General Practice
  • Whittlesea Aged Care Network
  • Hume Aged Care Network
  • Banyule Nillumbic Whittlesea, Managers of Volunteers Network
  • Darebin Managers of Volunteers Network
  • Hume Volunteer Gateway Steering Committee
  • Banyule Nillumbic Primary Care Alliance Service coordination and Practitioners Meetings
  • Victorian Co-operative on Children’ s Services for Ethnic Groups (VICSEG)