03 5231 2333

The Full Picture

Acknowledgement

“SkillsConnection acknowledges the traditional owners of the Gulidjan country and recognise the Eastern Marr’s Nation connection to land, waters and culture. We pay our respects to their Elders past, present and emerging.”

Starting from scratch

If you are someone, or are caring for someone, who has recently been assessed as having a disability SkillsConnection is here to help. We can also help you with understanding, planning and arranging NDIS funded supports.

We know how challenging and confusing trying to understand and access the various systems of support can be.

If you feel that you are being “given the run around”, “banging your head against a brick wall” or just getting “bogged down in regulations and complications” then let us help you sort it out and get the results you are looking for.

You can call us or make an appointment and talk with one of our experienced and extremely “client focussed” staff who will help you to navigate the system, access the available resources and arrange ongoing support that is tailored to suit your specific needs.

At our Rae St. offices we can help you arrange…

NDIS Funded Support
Support Co-ordination
Life transition planning
Individual Support
In-Home Support
Tenancy Obligation
Travel Training
In home respite
Group activities
Supported employment
Outings & entertainment
Holiday support programs

And if you don’t see what you’re looking for here, please contact.

Community Connection

Community Connection provides programs and services specifically targeted towards people of all abilities and all ages.

These programs and services aim to empower individuals, develop skills, support choice-making and promote people’s rights.

This encourages individuals to live their life goals, to build self esteem, dignity, valued status and provides new opportunities that will enhance quality of life and community membership and inclusion.
Community Connection also provides programs and services to people with behaviours of concern and specialised support needs.

We offer individualised programs from a wide range of innovative activities, workshops and community participation.

Underpinning all Community Connections’ programs and services are various learning experiences focusing on:

Appropriate social behaviour
Life skills
Empowerment
Team work
Respect and trust
Decision making and choice and the responsibility that goes hand in hand with choice
Communication
Dignity and valued status
Independent living skills
Healthy self image
Health and fitness
Health and safety
Community participation and knowledge of their local community
Encouraging friendships and social interaction

We do this through…

Program streams & services

Community Connection is a registered service provider with the Department of Human Services.

Our staff are suitably qualified to deliver services within the following program streams:

Studio 92
Enterprise Connection
Food-A-Roma
Life Connection
Community Inclusion

Locations

Community Connection operates within the community and from two locations:

96 Pound Road, Colac

A modern and attractive facility set on 3.5 acres of tranquil lawn and gardens in a semi-rural area, providing a calm, safe and supportive learning environment.

This facility is accessible to people of all abilities and is within walking distance to local shops, schools, swimming pool, gym, and sporting clubs.

The facility operates five days a week.

Studio 92, 90 Murray Street, Colac

A boutique Arts studio and gallery space, the concept of Studio 92 was
set in place when SkillsConnection decided to move our Artists and Artwork to a more prominent site to encourage community interaction and involvement.

Studio 92 is set in the centre of Colac, opposite the memorial Square and is surrounded by cafés making it the perfect location for a community arts space.

Studio 92 is accessible to people of all abilities and offers a well-appointed and comfortable space with a welcoming, creative and supportive atmosphere.

Community Inclusion

These programs are all community-based.

Activities within the Community Inclusion stream focus on providing opportunities for creating new friendships, enhancing social and communication skills, promoting exercise, team work, healthy wellbeing, empowerment, fun and relaxation.

Activities within the Community Inclusion program stream may include:

Sports & movement

Lawn bowls
Ten pin bowling
Bush walking
Basketball
Cricket
Bocce
Golf
Football
Swimming
Athletics
Gym
Gentle Stretch

Living & life skills

Self image
Independent living
Healthy eating
Basic food handling

Community participation

Participate in special community projects
Participate in local festivals
Community singing
Disco
Involvement in local markets selling produce and items made in programs
Work-like program

Community support

Maintenance of Colac’s mosaic park
Maintain Colac Driver Reviver with other community groups
Meals on Wheels
Sensory garden at local nursing home

Life Connection

Life Connection programs focus on sensory-based activities offering a range of experiences in a supported environment.

The over-arching intent is to inspire individuals to be creative and try new activities.

Each participant receives individual support within a group situation to encourage interaction and participation in activities of their choice.
Staff encourage and guide participants in a fun and creative environment.

Activities within the Life Connection program stream may include:

Sensory art
Cooking
Massage and relaxation
Relax and chill out
Passive sports
Basic independent living skills
Out and about in the community

All activities focus on individual choice.

Enterprise Connection

Enterprise connection programs focus on providing a broad range of activities that will both meet the varied needs of participants and have the potential to produce a modest income.

All income generated from program activities, items and/or products made is returned to programs in its entirety.

There are three core activity areas within the Enterprise Connection program stream:

Tree Connection

Tree Connection centres on a small scale native nursery where participants are supported and encouraged to learn and participate in basic horticultural activities.

Education is provided regarding participants’ local environment by collecting and processing native and indigenous seeds.

The program also provides training in basic gardening skills, maintenance of equipment and in all areas of related occupational health and safety.

Tree Connection is also responsible for the development and maintenance of all the gardens at the Pound Road facility where they have very successfully created a spiral herb garden, an organic vegetable garden and many secret gardens.

Recycling Connection

Recycling Connection is community-focused and works with a set base of business customers collecting recyclable items and materials.

Taking part in this process teaches participants money handling, road skills, traffic signs and knowledge of their local community.

Participants are also educated in basic health and safety issues and good work practices.

Contract Connection

Contract Connection focuses on small assembly work providing a variety of activities such as letter folding, phone book delivery and hook assembly.

Other activities within the Enterprise Connection program stream include:

Woodwork and wood-craft
Mosaics and pottery

Studio 92

Studio 92 provides innovative programs surrounding the arts, embracing creative expression and encouraging ability in a supportive environment.

Studio 92’s specialist staff are very passionate in their service delivery.
These staff come from a variety of backgrounds and deliver technical and creative advice to the artists whilst encouraging and promoting independence.

Team members provide ongoing support and tuition to assist participants to broaden their skills and knowledge, whilst promoting their creative work in the community.

Participants are supported to access the wider arts community through involvement in a variety of festivals, performances, exhibitions, community arts projects and professional development workshops.

Underpinning all artistic programs is a variety of other learning experiences focusing on:

Appropriate social behaviour
Life skills
Empowerment
Team work
Respect and trust
Community membership
Decision making and choice and the responsibility that goes hand in hand with choice
Communication
Dignity and valued status
Independent living skills

Studio 92 operates 5 days a week offering Visual Arts:

The programs offer participants of all abilities the opportunity to experience and express themselves through a variety of mediums, including painting, sculpture, drawing, mosaic, photography and print making.

Artists are encouraged to explore and discover their own form of creative expression by involving themselves in all aspects of art production, including planning and development from construction of canvases through to finished artworks. These can then be displayed in the gallery.

Retirement Connection

Retirement Connection programs focus on the need of a growing number of people with disabilities to retire out of full-time day placements.

Through the program participants are encouraged to exercise choice in relation to the options and opportunities that are presented to them.

Complementing this, we actively provide support to generic age and retirement programs within our community.

Retirement Connection have created partnerships with the Mercy Eventide centre, the Colac Do Care service and the Baptist Creative Living Centre with the intent of enhancing friendships for our program participants and facilitating opportunities to gain individual skills, encourage choice making, promote peoples’ rights, dignity and self-worth and to improve quality of life.

As part of the program we also deliver art and craft, music and passive exercise classes at a private retirement centre.

Count us in program

In 2007 we initiated this program to address the needs of older Victorians currently living in state funded nursing homes.

Through our Retirement Connection area we developed a model that would provide support and encouragement in all aspects of older citizens’ lives, lifting them from being solely defined by their health status and care needs.

Our key criteria for this program stream included:

Providing support, encouragement and opportunity to ensure senior Victorians lead independent, active and healthy lives for as long as possible.
Encouraging communities to value, listen to, and learn from senior Victorians, and to understand and appreciate the diversity of the ageing experience.
Creating opportunities for senior Victorians to fully participate in economic, social and community life.

Community Connection

Community Connection also provides a range of other services in the disability area. These services include:

Individual support
In-home respite
Fee-for-service (FFS)
Group activities
Case management

Individual support packages

Delivered by highly qualified staff, Community Connection’s individual support packages are intended to support and encourage people of all abilities in a manner that best meets their identified needs, be they physical, health related, emotional or behavioural, and to participate in activities of their choice.

Individuals are required to be assessed for eligibility for this one-to-one assistance. Following assessment an individual plan is developed
outlining goals, time frames and strategies.

Community Connection currently provides one-to-one support to a number of people, enabling them to participate in activities including educational support – both classroom and tutorial, ATSS programs and community activities.

Individualised support is about self-determination, community membership and citizenship, and involves:

Providing support in independent living skills
People directing the planning process to the greatest extent possible, and making their own choices about how they wish to live their life
Assisting people to identify their goals, the ways that these can be achieved, and the supports required
Exploring supports that are flexible and wide-ranging
Facilitating planning which respects the needs of family members and carers and their role in the life of the individual
Inclusion and participation by people with disabilities in community life.

In-home respite

Community Connection’s in-home services support people with a disability to remain living at home with their families.
Following an individual’s request for in – home respite, they are assessed as to their eligibility.

A plan incorporating both the client and their family’s input regarding their needs and what will be required to support them both is then developed.

When all parties are in agreement, the plan is then put into effect and the required level of in-home respite support provided.

Fee for service (FFS)

Community Connection’s fee-for-service support is provided to ensure that individuals have an avenue to access services which are not currently funded either through or by the Department of Human Services.

After expressing their choice individuals are assessed to ascertain their needs and the suitability of their desired program.
All costs for program participation are met by the individual.

Zen House

The Zen house is located at the west end of Colac in a residential area.The objective of the Zen house is to provide those with high needs a opportunity to participate in sensory based activities between the hrs of 9am to 3pm Mon to Fri.

Some of the current activities on offer include: Arm Chair Travel, Sensory Stories, Hydrotherapy, Relaxation/Massage, Music Therapy, Cooking and Intense interaction sessions.

Here at the Zen house we have a very close working relationship with sensory OT Susan Fowler, participants require sensory assessment to be completed and either 1:2 or 1:1 funding to attend the Zen house, this enables the program to provide the intense delivery of programs that are on offer. Transport to and from programs can be provided.

Staff

Community Connection’s specialist staff is a highly qualified and dedicated team, each possessing formal qualifications in disability along with appropriate levels of hands-on experience gained working in disability programs and activities.

Staff also contribute their broader experience gained through a wide variety of qualifications, trades and life experiences.

Service area & transport options

SkillsConnection’s current area for service delivery is the Barwon
South-Western Region.

There are several transport options attached to our service, as follows:
Community transport system
SkillsConnection service bus
Taxi and wheelchair taxi
Independent travel

Complaints

It’s OK to complain, and to provide compliments.

What if you are unhappy with the way someone treats you, a service you receive or a decision someone makes that effects you?

Talk to the service provider first and try to work things out but if you can’t achieve a satisfactory outcome you can ask for help to resolve the situation from the Disability Services Commissioner.

If you have experienced something good, please do let us know as well.

Find out more

Disability Services

If you are someone, or are caring for someone, who has recently been assessed as having a disability SkillsConnection is here to help. We can also help you with understanding, planning and arranging NDIS funded supports.

We know how challenging and confusing trying to understand and access the various systems of support can be.

Talk With Us

We can also help you with understanding, planning and arranging NDIS funded supports.

SkillsConnection’s future direction is governed by an objective business planning process with our most recent plan covering 2017 to 2020 and takes into consideration future growth requirements

Find Out More About SkillsConnection

We have over 40 years experience

About Skills Connection