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COVID-19 Support
Support information and resources during the current Pandemic
COVID-19 Support

COVID-19 Community Support

A Bass Coast COVID-19 Response and Recovery Group has been established to help guide, support and advocate for Bass Coast through the COVID-19 pandemic. To contact this Group, call (03) 5671 2211 or email community.support@basscoast.vic.gov.au

Mental Wellness

It's important to look after our mental health during the COVID-19 pandemic, and normal to feel stressed and anxious during uncertain times. Sharing how you feel with someone can help. Here are some different ways you can seek help:

  • Contact your local GP and let them know you're mental health is not 100%. They will be able to provide you with an appropriate referral.
  • Visit the Department of Health website for information on what services are available.
  • Beyond Blue offer practical advice and resources. The Beyond Blue Support Service offers short term counselling and referrals by phone and webchat on 1300 224 636. There's also a COVID-19 Beyond Blue web page.
  • Lifeline offer tips, resources and advice as well as crisis and suicide support. You can phone them on 13 11 14 (24 hours / 7 days), Text 0477 13 11 14 (6pm - midnight AEDT, 7 nights), or online chat through their website (7pm - midnight, 7 nights).
Staying Connected

As we try to navigate the impacts of COVID-19 for ourselves, our family and friends, and our broader community, it's completely understandable that we may feel anxious, vulnerable and disconnected.

These are unprecedented times and it’s more important than ever that we reach out for assistance if we need it.

To support the community, Council is partnering with the Department of Health and Human Services in a Program called the Community Activation and Social Isolation Initiative (CASI) - designed to connect community members with local community organisations who can provide some of the practical, emotional and social supports that may be needed during this time.

If you, or someone you know, could benefit from extra support during this time such as a regular phone chat, assistance with navigating technology to stay connected to family and friends, or joining a social activity group, then please phone the Victorian COVID 19 Hotline on 1800 675 398 and press 3 to speak to an Australian Red Cross volunteer. The volunteers are trained in assessing your needs and can refer you to a range of support services including the CASI Program.

You can find further details on the Program in the fact sheet below

Looking for Work or Financial Support

These are unprecedented times and you may find yourself in challenging situations that you haven’t had to navigate before. The Commonwealth and Victorian governments have a range of financial supports to assist families/individuals and businesses/industry during this time.

There is a Support Package for Victorian Workers impacted by COVID-19 and there are welfare packages in place for those who are eligible. For more information on welfare eligibility and to access any of these services, visit Services Australia. Job seekers are encouraged to register with the Working for Victoria website.

Need essential supplies but can't leave the house?

Relief packages are available to those who can not leave their home due to COVID-19 and are unable to arrange family or other support. To access a relief package, call the Victorian Hotline on 1800 675 398. For more information, read the media release here.

Supermarkets such as Woolworthsand Coles have established Priority Assistance Services, to arrange home delivery for those most vulnerable including seniors, people with a disability, or those who can not leave their home. Some local independent supermarkets are also offering this service. Call your local independent supermarkets, grocers or convenience stores to find out what services they are offering.

Paying your rates

We adopted a COVID-19 Financial Hardship Policy at our May Council Meeting, which will help impacted ratepayers cope with additional financial burdens caused by the pandemic.

Impacted residential ratepayers and businesses, including businesses that lease their premises, will be able to apply for an interest-free deferral of the fourth instalment of their 2019/20 rates and the first instalment of their 2020/21 rates, until 30 June 2021.

Visit our Rates page or contact our rates team on (03) 5671 2211 or 1800 BCOAST (226 278) for more information.

Paying your rent

We encourage people to speak directly with their landlords or real estate agents about the possibility of reduced rent. If you receive more than the base rate of Family Tax Benefit, or already receive welfare payments from the Australian Government, you may be eligible for Rent Assistance.

On 30 March, the National Cabinet agreed to a moratorium on evictions for the next six months for residential and commercial tenants who are experiencing financial distress due to the impact of coronavirus. This will apply across all states and territories.

Paying your mortgage

Many banks are developing and offering Coronavirus Assistance packages, including a six month freeze on mortgage repayments. We encourage you to get in touch with your bank to discuss what support is available to you.

Translated and Easy English Resources

Enliven have developed a series of Easy English Resources which can be downloaded. They include visual infographics and information on COVID-19 translated into Chin Hakha, Chin Falam, Karen and Zomi.

DHHS has COVID-19 translated information in more than 40 languages for people from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds, health professionals and industry. Information includes factsheets and promotional materials.

Support for charities and community organisations

The Australian Charities and Not-for-profit Commission has a range of resources available on their website, include webinars, and a list of support packages available to charities and not-for-profits.

Can I get my medicine delivered?

Yes, if you meet the following criteria you can organise to have your medicine delivered. Call your local pharmacy to discuss delivery.

  • people isolating themselves at home on the advice of a medical practitioner, in accordance with home isolation guidance issued by the Australian Health Protection Principle Committee for confirmed COVID-19 cases,
  • people who meet the current national triage protocol criteria for suspected COVID-19 infection after consultation with either the national COVID-19 hotline, state COVID-19 hotlines, a registered medical or nursing practitioner, or COVID-19 trained health clinic triage staff
  • people aged over 70
  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people aged over 50
  • people with chronic health conditions or who are immunocompromised
  • parents with new babies and people who are pregnant

For more information, visit the Australian Department of Health website.

Other support

There is a range of information on support services available from the DHHS Website. Their factsheet may also have valuable information about where you can find additional support

Locally, you may also find support through various community groups and organisations, such as Bass Coast Churches online, in our Community Directory.