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HealthWest Update

HealthWest Partnership aims to bring local communities, organisations and councils together to achieve real improvements in health and wellbeing for everyone in Melbourne’s west. Thank you for reading our monthly update.

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News at HealthWest

HealthWest has had a productive first year of its 2017-2019 Strategic Plan. Some highlights include:

  • establishment of the Prevention Taskforce
  • co-designing strategies with young refugee and asylum seekers to improve how the mental health system responds to their needs
  • support for connectwest‘s establishment
  • contribution to the regional partnership that seeks to eliminate men’s violence against women
  • launch of the Referral Decision Aid to support children with developmental delay to access services
  • development of organisational standards for Workforce Mutuality

I thank the staff for their ongoing commitment to improving the health and wellbeing of communities in our catchment.


This month we also welcome City West Water as a new member of HealthWest Partnership. City West Water is a key partner providing water solutions in support of the Greening the West initiative.

Greening the WestThe vision of Greening the West is “to enable sustainable, liveable, healthy communities through urban greening initiatives”, and the steering committee seeks to realise this by taking a regional approach in fostering projects and activities that deliver quality green infrastructure projects  including vegetation and public use of quality green space. Click on the link to find out more about the Greening the West initiative.

Gail O’Donnell
Executive Officer 
(03) 9248 9665

Project Updates

Referral Decision Aid: Tell Us What You Think!


Referral Decision Aid

In November 2017, HealthWest and partners launched the Referral Decision Aid to support referrers to refer children with developmental delay to the appropriate service in Melbourne’s West.

Now we’re evaluating it! We want to find out:

  • Do referrers find the Referral Decision Aid useful and easy-to-use?
  • How is the Referral Decision Aid being used?
  • How can we make the Referral Decision Aid better?

Let us know what you think about the Referral Decision Aid
  • Do you work with preschool-aged children in Melbourne’s west?
  • Do you ever make referrals for children who you think have developmental delays?
We want to hear from you whether you’ve used the Referral Decision Aid or not.

Complete Survey Here

More info:

New Prevention of Violence Against Women Project: Momentum

Partner: Victoria University
Aim: To engage young male students and staff from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds at Victoria University to develop and implement primary prevention strategies in their local communities to prevent violence against women and their children.
Project length: One year from 1 July 2018
Funding: $140,000 grant from the Victoria Government (Free from Violence Fund)

The Momentum initiative is based on a well-tested project model—Working Together with Men project (WTWM). WTWM supports and mobilises men to take primary prevention actions to prevent violence against women.


Working Together With Men Summary Report

The WTWM model is unique in Australia. The evidence base underpinning the WTWM project is strong (summary report; full evaluation report). However, further evidence of the efficacy of the model in differing settings, particularly among young CALD men is required. The replicated project—Momentum—will test the efficacy of the translated project and contribute to the prevention of violence against women evidence base.

In the coming months, HealthWest Partnership and Victoria University will:

  • establish the project governance and operational structures
  • work collaboratively to engage 20 to 30 men (aged between 18-30; currently working, studying or are affiliated with Victoria University) who have potential for great influence and reach in their communities. These men will then attend a tailored training which includes a mentorship program and support to become local advocates on the prevention of violence against women and their children.

EmailMore info:  Cuong La, Working Together With Men – Project Manager,, 03 9248 9657.

Seat at the Table: Help Us Spread the Word

Seat at the Table is now asking young people from refugee or asylum seeker backgrounds living in Melbourne’s west to vote for their favourite activity to improve health and wellbeing. Options include:

  • Mini Gardens
  • Healthy Brain + Body: designing your own healthy routine
  • Zine Making: sharing your story of migration, settlement, racism or mental health
  • Mobile Filming: learning how to use your mobile to share your story.

Please help us spread the word. 
(1) Share the Seat at the Table Facebook group
(2) Send people to our Seat at the Table project page

Seat at the Table: Vote here

EmailMore info:  Helen Scudamore,, 03 9248 9662 or 0416 102 186

Communicating Clearly to Our Communities Survey

HealthWest Partnership and Inner North West PCP will be sending out a survey for communications and marketing staff in the health, human services or community sector, who serve communities in Melbourne’s inner north or west.

We face increasing challenges when producing effective communications for our consumers and communities. Through this survey, we hope to draw from the expertise and resources available in our region to put together some tools to support communications and marketing staff.

This survey is expected to be emailed out in mid August.

EmailWould you like your organisation to participate?
Connect us with your communication and marketing staff.

Email Deb Tan, Communications Officer,, 03 9248 9655.


Here are some of the activities we were involved in:

Launch of the Workforce Mutuality Standards Pilot Program
After a heap of work behind the scenes from HealthWest and our partner organisations, the pilot for the HealthWest Partnership Standards for Workforce Mutuality is ready to be launched. The pilot program will test how well this new set of Standards helps meet our goal of building a health and community services workforce that is more reflective of the actual diversity of the community.Participating organisations in pilot: Bolton Clarke, cohealth, commUnity+, IPC HealthTweddle Child and Family Service.


First meeting of the participating organisations in the Workforce Mutuality pilot program

connectwest Strategic Planning
This last month, the connectwest committee, led by Spark Strategy, explored their vision, mission, objectives and strategies, and how they will create a meaningful impact with communities in Melbourne’s west.Connect with connectwestemailing listFacebookTwitterLinkedIn group

Access & Equity Resources

Community Perspectives on Asylum Seeker and Refugee Mental Health

This health issues policy paper from the Ethnic Communities’ Council of Victoria (ECCV) looks at the enablers and barriers experienced by people from refugee and asylum seeker backgrounds when accessing health system and mental health services. The paper gives recommendations on effective pathways for mental health services, but highlights that new and emerging communities often have difficulties accessing a complex health system and are vulnerable to being left behind.

Download the report

Prevention Resources

Changing the Picture: A national resource to support the prevention of violence against Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women and their children

Our Watch has produced a new national resource to support prevention of violence against Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women and their children. Changing the picture shows how as a society we can work together to change the underlying drivers of this violence.

Read here

For your Diary


Forum: Early Childhood Early Intervention (ECEI) – Sunshine

These forums will help community and providers understand more about Early Childhood Early Intervention (ECEI) and the NDIS. Run by the National Disability Insurance Agency, with Early Childhood Intervention Australia (ECIA) Vic/Tas and the Brotherhood of St Laurence partner.

When: Wednesday 22 August
Download the flyer

Workshop: Starting a Business (For new migrants and asylum seekers)

Maroondah City Council’s BizHub is running a workshop for new migrants and asylum seekers who are planning to start a business in Australia. This will be an opportunity for new migrants to receive advice on planning and preparing their business ideas, and to meet other emerging business owners.

When: Wednesday 29 August, 9.30 am – 1.00 pm
Where: BizHub, Realm, Ringwood Town Square 179 Maroondah Highway Ringwood VIC 3134
RSVP by: ASAP – this is a free event but places are limited
More info


Forum: Early Childhood Early Intervention (ECEI) – Hoppers Crossing

These forums will help community and providers understand more about Early Childhood Early Intervention (ECEI) and the NDIS. Run by the National Disability Insurance Agency, with Early Childhood Intervention Australia (ECIA) Vic/Tas and the Brotherhood of St Laurence partner.

When: Tuesday 4 September
Download the flyer

Workshop: Refugee and Asylum Seeker Experiences

This one day workshop is for anyone working with or wanting to work with people from refugee backgrounds.

When: 6 September 2018, 9.30am – 4.30pm
Where: Foundation House – SUNSHINE
Cost: $250
More info; Download the flyer

Conference: Engagement and Integration of Chronic Care

The Australian Disease Management Association are holding a conference on Engagement and Integration of Chronic Care with a specific focus on enablement, empowerment and activation.

When: Thursday 13 – Friday 14 September 2018
Where: Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre
See conference flyer

Conference: aes18 International Evaluation Conference

aes18 is the annual International Evaluation Conference of the Australasian Evaluation Society. The conference will focus on transformations in diversity and power, digital innovation, big data and user-centred design, systems and capability and mindsets.

When: Wednesday 19 – Friday 21 September 2018
Where: Launceston
Register by: Monday 3 September
More info


Conference: NDIS and Mental Health

The theme of this conference will be Mental Health Policy, Practice & Reform: Getting it Right in a Time of Change. The conference is being hosted by Mental Health Victoria and Community Mental Health Australia.

When: Wednesday 31 October – Thursday 1 November 2018
Where: Melbourne Convention & Exhibition Centre
More info and to register