Mental Health Respite: Carer Support - Questions and Answers

1. Q.  Can State Governments apply for Mental Health Respite: Carer Support funding?

A. No.  See section 3.2 of Part C2 of the Program Guidelines.

2. Q. Will current MHR:CS arrangement have to change?

A. No, current MHR: CS services will continue to provide carer support as outlined in their funding agreements.  New and expanded MHR:CS services will focus on improving access to a broader range of carer support options that account for the episodic nature of mental illness and the need for carer support services that respond to changing circumstances.

3. Q. If I only want to provide services in part of the site/coverage area, am I still able to apply?

A. Yes.  Part coverage is permissible provided there is coverage of at least one entire Local Government Area.   If you are applying to only provide services in one or some of the Local Government Areas targeted in the HACC region then you should note this in the appropriate space on the front of your Application Form.

4. Q. Where can I find information on the Local Government Areas?

A. The Australian Local Government Association at has links to Local Government Associations in each State and Territory.

5. Q. Are current providers able to apply through the open process for services?  If so, are current providers only able to apply to LGAs in the region which current providers already service or can current providers apply to deliver new services in other regions?

A. If you are an existing provider and you meet the eligibility criteria, you may apply to deliver services through the open selection process for any Sites/Coverage Areas listed in section 3.1 of Part C2 of the Program Guidelines and on the DSS website.

6. Q. It appears there are no funding opportunities for Tasmania? If so, why not?

A. In Tasmania, there is currently a restricted process to select a provider or providers to expand services to cover Local Government Areas in Southern Tasmania.  The relevant LGAs are Huon Valley, Sorell, Derwent Valley, Tasman, Glamorgan-Spring Bay, Southern Midlands and Central Highlands.   The Department is not seeking applications for new services in Tasmania.

7. Q. Are applications from areas not listed as geographical target areas welcome?

A. No.  At this time MHR:CS funding is only available for Local Government Areas within the Coverage Areas listed on the DSS website  and in the Application Form.

8. Q. We would like to employ Carer Peer Worker/s to provide training for carers to increase their effectiveness as carer representatives and also to research the impact of Carer Consultant/Carer Peer Support workers in existing programs.  Are such projects appropriate to apply for this funding?

A. No.  Funding is provided under the 2011–12 Budget measure for additional respite and carer support services.  Please refer to the description of MHR:CS services in Part C2 of the Program Guidelines.

9. Q. The guidelines indicate an emphasis on young people with, or developing mental health concerns, or with family who have mental health issues but  later in the guidelines there was more emphasis on coordinating and managing mental health assistance.   Is there a focus on working directly with young people and their families or is the expectation to cover the entire age range (which suggests adult management)?

If the service is for all ages which of (a) partnerships, (b) dividing the client base or (c) working as lead and sub contracted agency is the Department's desired approach for applications?

A.  The Targeted Community Care Program has three components as outlined in Part A of the Program Guidelines:

  • Personal Helpers and Mentors, which provides practical one-on-one assistance to people with severe mental illness, aged 16 years and over, to help them achieve their personal goals, develop better relationships with family and friends, and manage their everyday tasks 
  • Mental Health Respite: Carer Support, which provides a range of flexible respite and family support options for carers of people with mental illness, and
  • Family Mental Health Support Services, which provide early intervention support to assist vulnerable families with children and young people who are at risk of, or affected by, mental illness.

This selection process is seeking providers to deliver Mental Health Respite: Carer Support services to address the needs of carers of all ages, caring for people with mental illness. 

The Department will consider all service delivery models or arrangements and assess against the selection criteria.

10. Q. When will the Department be sending invitations to existing providers for the direct or restricted processes?

A.  Invitations to those existing providers that the former FaHCSIA has selected for expansion to increase coverage and capacity were sent on Thursday 15 November 2012.

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