Welcome to January 2022

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Queensland Faces its Biggest COVID Challenge Yet

Since Queensland’s borders opened on 13 December 2021, COVID-19 has been running rampant in the state and case numbers have grown substantially. These are challenging times for organisations and young people. There have been many changes to rules around testing requirements and contact tracing. People have stood in long queues for hours to have Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) tests administered, while Rapid Antigen Tests (RAT) have been almost impossible to source.

The Department of Communities, Housing and Digital Economy has released communication around COVID-19 directives for its funded housing and homelessness service providers. For this document, click here.

Of significant importance is that service providers must immediately notify their Contract Officer or Regional Director if any staff member or client of their organisation tests positive to COVID-19 and if they are experiencing any impact to service delivery. A COVID-19 Incident-Notification by Funded Providers Form needs to be completed. To access this form, click here.

Remember to always refer to Queensland Health for the latest information.
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Useful COVID-19 Resources

The Queensland Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Child Protection Peak recognises the concern and pressure that families are experiencing as we face the current wave of the Omicron strain. As such, they’ve prepared useful resources to assist families. These include advice on how to talk to young people about COVID-19, activities to keep connected and ideas for self-care. To access these resources, click here.

Housing & Homelessness Sector Dropped as Essential Services

In mid-January, National Cabinet extended the definition of essential worker to cover the welfare sector. Initial reports indicated that the housing and homeless sector would be covered by this. However, Queensland Health released new Public Health Direction of the definition of essential workers that does not include the housing and homelessness sector. This is of concern to QYHC and many of our colleagues. We’re addressing this oversight as a matter of priority.

The Queensland Government is currently working to source more RAT tests. The Department of Communities, Housing and Digital Economy will be assigned an allocation by 21 January 2022 and will work to distribute these within 3-4 weeks.

Be COVID Ready!

It is strongly recommended that organisations and households plan ahead and have measures in place in the event they are infected by COVID-19 and have to isolate. This includes being prepared for the impact on physical health as well as emotional wellbeing.

For information on preparing a ‘Get Covid Ready Kit,’ click here.
For a quarantine wellness kit, click here.
For a list of useful services in your area, click here.
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Connecting with Mob
During COVID

Mob Link was developed by the Institute for Urban Indigenous Health. It aims to connect Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people to health and social services across south-east Queensland. Most importantly, Mob Link provides access to a range of COVID related services including where to get vaccinated.

For more information about Mob Link and the QR code to access the app, click here.

Young People are the Hope of an Inclusive Australia Day

We couldn’t say it better than Actor Sam Neill. In recent years, there has been growing recognition that Australia Day is not a day of celebration for First Nations people.
Quite simply, January 26 is Invasion Day.
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Yet, January 26th once again brought with it more discussion on celebrating Australia Day. A recent national survey conducted by Deakin University found that 60% of respondents want to continue to celebrate Australia Day on January 26.
However, a closer analysis of the data shows that 53% of millennials (those born between 1986 and 2002) think that the date should be moved. The desire of younger Australians to move the date of Australia Day combined with the wider population wanting more Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander history taught in schools may indicate that change is not far away. We are certain those born since 2002 are the most aware of the truth of how our First Nations people have been treated and are most likely to fight for change.

Imagine the dollars, time and energy these conversations have taken and continue to take. Imagine if we instead listened to our First Nations people and ceased to celebrate a day that began over two centuries of genocide, systemic racism, displacement and the tearing apart of their culture and families. It is hard to fathom why we cannot just listen to what they are saying and change the date. It is a simple ask and a simple solution. Leaders need to take leadership on this. This is not a majority rules issue. It is about human rights and recognising the atrocities perpetrated against First Nations people over the past 234 years.

The mainstream media often contributes to damaging discussions in the lead up to Australia Day celebrations. On the other hand, First Nations media provides an Indigenous perspective on Australia Day and the debates that continue.

For more information about First Nations media platforms, click here.
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In his acceptance speech Tennis great Dylan Alcott said:
"If I'm honest with you, I cannot tell you how much I used to hate myself. I used to hate having a disability. I hated it so much. I hated being different and, you know, I didn't want to be here anymore. I really didn't.”
He said that through having the best family in the world and seeing his Paralympic heroes such as Louise Sauvage, Kurt Fearnley and Danni Di Toro, he began to see the possibilities.

Dylan is the first person with a disability to be named as Australian of the Year. He is also the first male tennis player in history to win the Golden Slam - all four grand slam titles plus an Olympic or Paralympic gold medal in the same year. Congratulations to Dylan for your outstanding advocacy as well as your sporting achievements!
A huge congratulations also to our youth sector colleague Youth and Family Service (YFS) CEO, Cath Bartolo - Member of the Order of Australia for significant service to youth, to social welfare, and to the community of Logan.

Cath has devoted her life to the Logan community, first as a teacher, then as a disability coordinator and for the past 20 years as Chief Executive Officer of YFS. Cath says that this honour recognises the work of YFS – staff, board, partners and clients.
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Congratulations Cath – our whole sector benefits from your passion and wisdom!
IMAGE_Dr Daniel Nour
Dr Daniel Nour has been named the 2022 Young Australian of the Year for his selfless work creating mobile homeless medical service, Street Side Medics.
Dr Nour saw a gap in NSW health services, prompting him to launch the not-for-profit in August 2020. With 145 volunteers and four clinics across NSW, the service provides medical assistance to those experiencing homelessness.

It has so far helped an estimated 300 people, treating a range of illnesses many of which would otherwise have gone unnoticed. The service is completely free and doesn’t require a Medicare card.

A huge thank you and congratulations to Dr Nour!!!

Calling Budding Artists

The next round of the Queensland Government’s Individuals Fund is now open. This fund provides support of up to $7000 for Queensland artists and cultural workers looking to undertake new projects or participate in professional development opportunities. As we continue to navigate COVID-19, it is essential to invest in our local talent to ensure that artists can adapt their skills to an ever-changing environment.

The Individuals Fund is open until 4 March for projects commencing 30 May 2022. For more information about how to apply, click here.
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Emerging Leaders

QDN is looking for Queenslanders with a disability who have an interest in developing their leadership skills to apply for their 2022 Emerging Leaders Program. The program provides the opportunity to advance your own leadership skills, connect with and learn from other leaders, and discover strategies for generating change and inclusion.

Applications close on 13 February 2022 and can be submitted in various formats including a short video, written and photographs.

For the Emerging Leaders Program flyer, click here. For information about how to apply and obtaining assistance with your application, click here.

Extraordinary Assistance Grants for Wide Bay-Burnett

Assistance grants of up to $50,000 are now available to primary producers, small business and non-profit organisations impacted by the recent floods in the Wide Bay-Burnett region. These grants are to assist the estimated 70+ businesses in their road to recovery as they are the heart of what keeps this regional community functioning.

For more information about the grants, call Queensland Rural and Industry Development Authority on 1800 623 946 or click here.
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Zig Zag is Recruiting!

Zig Zag Young Women’s Resource Centre Inc are recruiting for a permanent, part time position of Intake Housing Support Worker within their Housing Program. This permanent, part-time position is for 32 hours (4 days) / fortnight and is paid at a QCSCA Level 5. Zig Zag offers above Award employment conditions and salary sacrifice is available.

For more information about how to apply, click here.

2022 National NAIDOC
Awards Nominations

The National NAIDOC Awards recognise the extraordinary contributions that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people make to our community. If you know someone who has empowered Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people to engage in their community or has demonstrated high quality in their chosen field, now is the time to nominate them.

The closing date for nominations is 11 April 2022.
For more information about the award categories and to access a nomination form, click here.

Free AOD Counselling & Support

Noffs Alcohol and other Drug (AOD) Counselling and Support for 12 to 25 year olds is open for referrals. This service assists young people who are struggling with day-to-day life and utilising drugs and alcohol to cope. The service is available across south-east Queensland from the Gold Coast to the Sunshine Coast.

For more information or to make a referral, call 1800 753 300 or email qldreferrals@noffs.org.au.
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Strengthening Transitions:
Link and Launch

Research shows that more and more young people who complete year 12 are not engaged in education, employment or training in the year after they leave school. The Department of Education’s Link and Launch Program aims assist young people who have completed their formal schooling to make a successful transition into further learning or earning that meets their goals. The program can be found in many high schools and will roll out across more schools in early 2022.

For more information click here.
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Register for Q Shelter
Learning Exchange

You are invited to register for QShelter’s first learning exchange of the year. These events will be held online on the first Tuesday of every month – the first one being on 1 February 2022. This session will cover monitoring, evaluation and learning for system change and place based approaches. Click here to register.

Support for Adolescent
to Parent Violence

The ReNew Program is a service of the Safer Families Initiative (SFI) at the Brisbane Domestic Violence Service (BDVS). To be eligible for the SFI ReNew Program, there needs to be a young male aged 12-17 years in the home using violence towards a female protective caregiver. Initial support is provided by BDVS with long-term therapeutic intervention by Carinity Talera.

For a factsheet about the program, click here. For a referral form, click here.

Record Number of Young People Graduate from YJ Program!

In 2021, over 200 young people graduated from Youth Justice’s Transition to Success Program (T2S). After an increase in funding, T2S was able to expand its locations to 20 sites across the state. T2S has been shown to reduce reoffending by young people engaged with the youth justice system by supporting them to access alternative education, training and employment opportunities.

GCBF Super Round

For the first time, annual grants of up to $100,000 will be available in a Gambling Community Benefit Fund super round. These grants are for non-profit community groups to provide services and events for Queenslanders.

The super round will be available to eligible organisations in the first round of 2022 and will close 28 February.

GCBF encourages all organisations to apply for funding, including those from some of our under-represented applicant areas such as domestic and family violence services, multicultural groups and those located in regional and remote Queensland.

To find out more about how to apply, click here.
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Free Financial Counselling

Tenants Queensland is offering a free financial counselling service to assist with areas of debt including rental arrears; utility bills (such as water, electricity, gas and phone); loans; credit cards and fines.

The service can also assist with analysing your current financial situation; budgeting; managing debt; providing advice about bankruptcy and referral to other services.

For more information, call 1300 744 263 or click here.

National Housing Conference

NHC Melbourne 2022 program includes an overview of the five conference plenary sessions as well as the first 12 concurrent sessions. The theme for next year’s NHC is Resilience, Connection, Transformation.

For more information, click here
Register here and view the program here


Queensland Youth Housing Coalition are a member of the Make Renting Fair in Queensland Alliance. We would love to hear what you think are the most important elements of the tenancy experience. This will assist us on where to concentrate our advocacy in the next stage of the review.

The survey will only take a few minutes of your time, but will assist greatly in focusing our efforts on behalf of all Queensland renters.

To complete the survey, click here. For more on Make Renting Fair Queensland campaign, click here.

Calling For Case Examples

Changes to the Queensland Criminal Code:
New legislation requires every adult in Queensland to report information relating to child sexual offences committed by an adult in relation to a child under 16 years of age to the Queensland Police Service. Failure to do so is punishable by 3 years in prison. The Queensland Criminal Code (Child Sexual Offences Reform) and Other Legislation Amendment Act 2020 received assent in Parliament on the 14 September 2020 and commenced in Queensland on the 5 July 2021.

Following information and practice forums across the Youth, Women’s and Sexual Assault sectors a Working Group has been formed to further assist organisations in implementing this legislation.

If anyone has feedback or case examples to share, please contact the working group via Lorraine on 0448 073 463 or lorraine@qyhc.org.au

To read more about the Laws targeting sexual offences against children, click here

Find services in oneplace

oneplace is an online directory for Queensland parents, families and professionals that lists community services throughout Queensland. There are more than 58,000 services that provide assistance with a range of issues including parenting, domestic and family violence, legal issues, mental health and counselling, housing, financial and food assistance. It is free and easy to use. Access the directory here.
Platform 12 25_Flyer_April 2022
For more information about all the presentations and Platform 1225, click here
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