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Shannon Is Gippsland’s Driver For Change

Victorian Disability Awards Emerging Leader recipient Shannon Fischer has made a change in the lives of people with a disability.

Minister for Mental Health, Housing, Disability and Ageing Martin Foley  met with Shannon today and acknowledged her personal drive to develop a program to help with a disability gain independence.

Shannon, a Service Leader at Yooralla, Drouin Community Hub, won the award at the 2016 Awards in June this year.

She was recognised for designing and developing the innovative Driving Initiative Program with VicRoads and the local council’s L2P program to help people with a disability to get their driver’s licence.

The program has been embedded in Yooralla’s overall program of work with a view to rolling it out to other areas across Victoria.

Initiatives such as this are the hallmark of the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) which will transform the lives of more than 100,000 Victorians with disability, and those who care for them.

The NDIS is focused on designing services around people’s lives, helping them to achieve their goals and aspirations.

The NDIS will begin in the Inner Gippsland area from 1 October 2017. Preparation has begun for the early transition of priority clients to the National Disability Insurance Agency and support to the disability service providers is a major focus of the area’s ongoing work with the sector.

Mr Foley also met with local government, police and mental health stakeholders in Traralgon to discuss how three new mental health initiatives in the region will complement existing services and make an impact for people with mental illness.

New initiatives in Gippsland include mental health support packages for dairy farmers, the Latrobe suicide prevention trial and funding for Healthy Equal Youth grants to support the health and wellbeing of young same-sex attracted and gender diverse people.

Quotes attributable to Minister for Housing, Disability and Ageing Martin Foley

“It’s a great opportunity to be here in Gippsland today, to acknowledge the support being provided to two very different sectors of our community.”

“I know this area has a strong sense of community and an ability to come together to provide for and support each other when necessary.”

Quotes attributable to Member for Eastern Victoria Harriet Shing

 “Shannon is a great example of our community organisations that go above and beyond to support those who need it most.”

“It’s great to be able to get a pulse check from the mental health sector as we roll out key investments supporting those in our community who have been impacted by suicide, those in our dairy industry and LGBTI young people.”