Press Releases

Disability self-help grants encourage independence and community participation

* * - Wednesday, November 20, 2013


Grants of up to $10,000 are available to assist disability self-help groups to increase the independence and community participation of people with disabilities.

Deputy Premier and Member for Gippsland South Peter Ryan said the Victorian Coalition Government was assisting disability groups by simplifying the application and doubling the funding period for the latest round of Disability Self Help Grants program.

“Grant funding is provided for a variety of practical purposes including general expenses, running costs, and minor works or equipment,” Mr Ryan said.

“These grants provide self-help groups with a great opportunity to access funding to support their members’ activities.

“Self-help groups that focus on supporting their members to participate in their own community and make informed decisions about their lives will be given priority for grants.”

Mr Ryan said Disability Self-Help Grants provided up to $10,000 to assist self-help groups to:

 Strengthen the capacity of people with a disability to live independently in their own community and actively participate in community activities;
 Support members to make informed decisions about their own lives;
 Encourage a network of community peer support and information exchange for people with a disability and their families/carers; and
 Increase opportunities for self-help groups to provide information and education on the experiences of people with a disability.

“The grants will now be provided on a two-year basis rather than annually, which means groups don’t have to go through the application process every year,” Mr Ryan said.

“Also, groups that have previously been successful in obtaining grants of less than $2000 will no longer have to itemise their proposed expenditure in their applications.”

Applications close on Friday, 13 December and further information and application forms are available online at or by phoning Mr Ryan’s Sale office on 5144 1987.

Media contact: Stephanie Nicholls 0437 108 870

Ryan welcomes NDIS decision

* * - Monday, May 06, 2013

Deputy Premier and Member for Gippsland South Peter Ryan welcomed the Victorian Coalition Government’s commitment to support people with a disability by entering into an agreement on the National Disability Insurance Scheme.

On Saturday, Premier Denis Napthine and Minister for Disability Services Mary Wooldridge announced the signing of an agreement between the Victorian Coalition Government and the Commonwealth for a full roll-out of the National Disability Insurance Scheme – now known as DisabilityCare Australia in Victoria from 2019-20.

“Many individuals and families throughout Gippsland will benefit greatly from this decision,” Mr Ryan said.

“Once it comes into effect the scheme will provide certainty of care for those in Gippsland living with a disability and the many dedicated carers who support them.”

Mr Ryan said tomorrow’s 2013-2014 Victorian Budget would also include a significant funding increase of $224 million for disability services, taking the total annual disability funding provided by the Coalition Government to $1.6 billion.

“This Budget announcement will provide more immediate support, with a significant boost in the number of Individual Support Packages (ISPs) and funding for people with complex needs in supported accommodation,” Mr Ryan said.

“The disability package in the upcoming budget will support the continuing reform that is helping build better lives for people with disability in the lead-up to full implementation of the NDIS across Victoria from July 2019.”

The Budget package for disability:

• delivers $107 million for 720 new ISPs for people with high support needs, and continues the specialised vocational supports for young people with disability pursuing employment goals;
• provides over $62 million to help meet the increasingly complex needs of people with disability living in Government-run supported accommodation;
• commits $7.9 million for capital investment in new accommodation to enable the closure of Sandhurst Residential Services, giving residents the opportunity to live within the community;
• provides $4 million for the aids and equipment program for people with disability;
• allocates over $26 million for a wage rise in 2013-14 for about 13,000 disability workers as a result of a Fair Work Australia decision known as the SACS case; and

• contributes $17 million in additional funding to support the Victorian launch of the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) in the Barwon region on 1 July 2013 taking the Victorian Coalition Government’s total 3-year investment in the launch site to over $300 million.

"These two announcements over the weekend have been widely supported and I am delighted the Coalition Government is significantly increasing resources into the disability sector," Mr Ryan said.

“This package offers people with disability, their family and carers more control and choice over the support they receive to ensure it best meets their specific needs.”

Mr Ryan said funding had also been secured to purchase land and begin planning for the new Sale Specialist School as part of the 2013-14 Victorian Budget.

Media contact: Stephanie Nicholls 0437 108 870

Nominations for 2012 Victorian Disability Sector Awards close 7 March

* * - Wednesday, February 29, 2012

The 2012 Victorian Disability Sector Awards are currently open and Gippsland residents are being encouraged to nominate a member of the community or organisations who demonstrate excellence in service and a commitment to the development of people with a disability.

Deputy Premier and Member for Gippsland South Peter Ryan said the awards celebrate and acknowledge those who demonstrate excellence, passion, vision and commitment to assisting people with a disability achieve their life goals.

 “It is important that we recognise the essential work of those who are supporting people with a disability,” Mr Ryan said.

“These awards recognise the efforts of those individuals, teams, organisations and businesses for the significant contribution they are making to improve the lives of those with a disability,” Mr Ryan said.

Community Services Minister Mary Wooldridge said the continued efforts of disability support workers, volunteers and businesses are important in helping ensure people with a disability can achieve their goals and participate within the community.

“These awards provide a unique opportunity for this commitment and valuable community contribution to be acknowledged and honoured,” Ms Wooldridge said.

Members of the public can make a nomination in eight different award categories including: Support Worker (Individual); Support Worker (Team); Client Services Worker; Leadership; Emerging Leader; Volunteer; Business Supporting Disability and Lifetime Achievement Award categories.

Nominations close Wednesday 7 March 2012 and winners will be announced at the disability Sector Awards ceremony on Thursday 26 April.

For guidelines and nomination forms visit

Media contact: Ben Bulmer 0437 108 870

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