Orange Door opens in re­gion

Shepparton News - - NEWS - By Ash­lea Wi­toslawski

Shep­par­ton has been se­lected as the next lo­ca­tion for Vic­to­ria’s new Sup­port and Safety Hubs, known as The Orange Door.

The Orange Door is a part­ner­ship across gov­ern­ment and com­mu­nity sec­tor or­gan­i­sa­tions, pro­vid­ing a sin­gle con­tact point for adults, chil­dren and young peo­ple who are ex­pe­ri­enc­ing fam­ily vi­o­lence.

The part­ner­ship also in­te­grates the ChildFIRST ser­vice to con­nect fam­i­lies want­ing sup­port with the ser­vices they need.

The an­nounce­ment of Shep­par­ton as a new lo­ca­tion last week takes the to­tal num­ber of hubs across Vic­to­ria to eight with four be­gin­ning op­er­a­tions ear­lier this year in Bayside Penin­sula, Bar­won, Mallee and north-east Mel­bourne, and one more to open in in­ner Gipp­s­land by the end of the year.

Goul­burn Fam­ily Vi­o­lence ex­ec­u­tive and Goul­burn ChildFIRST chair An­gela Arm­strong is look­ing for­ward to hav­ing all ser­vices avail­able in the one con­ve­nient lo­ca­tion.

‘‘It’s a great op­por­tu­nity hav­ing a spe­cial­ist space where peo­ple can come and be pro­vided a ser­vice then and there,’’ Ms Arm­strong said.

‘‘We don’t want peo­ple to have to keep re­peat­ing their story.

‘‘We want to help peo­ple seek sup­port ear­lier.’’

Ex­cited by the ini­tia­tive, Ms Arm­strong be­lieves Shep­par­ton was se­lected be­cause of the al­ready out­stand­ing in­te­gra­tion and col­lab­o­ra­tion be­tween ser­vices in the Goul­burn re­gion.

She said the hub would not only fo­cus on fam­ily vi­o­lence, but on a range of com­mu­nity needs.

‘‘The Orange Door will link peo­ple with lo­cal com­mu­nity ser­vices, of­fer­ing sup­port for all hu­man needs,’’ she said.

Ms Arm­strong re­cently vis­ited the Mil­dura hub to learn more and was in­ter­ested to learn all spa­ces are pur­pose-built ex­actly the same across the state.

‘‘They have quite spe­cific de­sign fea­tures, fo­cus­ing on safety and se­cu­rity,’’ she said.

Ser­vic­ing the whole of the Goul­burn re­gion, Ms Arm­strong said al­though there was only fund­ing for one phys­i­cal lo­ca­tion in Shep­par­ton, they were look­ing into cre­at­ing out­post of­fices and other ac­cess points to en­sure peo­ple across the Greater Shep­par­ton, Mitchell, Moira, Mur­rindindi and Strath­bo­gie shires had ac­cess to the ser­vices.

‘‘We are com­mit­ted to en­sur­ing the whole of the Goul­burn re­gion can ac­cess ser­vices.’’

Ms Arm­strong also said The Orange Door in Shep­par­ton would bring a num­ber of ad­di­tional jobs to the re­gion.

By the end of 2021, The Orange Door will be op­er­at­ing across all 17 Vic­to­rian Depart­ment of Health and Hu­man Ser­vices ar­eas.

The La­bor Gov­ern­ment has in­vested $448.1 mil­lion to es­tab­lish Sup­port and Safety Hubs across the state — a key rec­om­men­da­tion of the Royal Com­mis­sion into Fam­ily Vi­o­lence.

This in­vest­ment formed part of the gov­ern­ment’s record $2.6 bil­lion in­vest­ment in fam­ily vi­o­lence ser­vices. ● Fam­i­lyCare will be host­ing an in­for­ma­tion ses­sion re­gard­ing The Orange Door in Shep­par­ton on Thurs­day, Oc­to­ber 18, from 8am­to9am. This is a free event, open to the pub­lic. To reg­is­ter your in­ter­est or to learn more, phone Women’s Health Goul­burn North East on 5722 3009.

An­gela Arm­strong

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