Summary

  • Community services offer support to the public.
  • The support may be information, advice, practical help, financial help or a combination of services.
  • The community service may be run by federal, state or local government or by a non-government organisation such as a charity.
Community services offer support to the public. The support may be information, advice, practical help, financial help or a combination of services. The community service may be run by federal, state or local government or by a non-government organisation such as a charity. Generally, community services are either free or well priced.

Examples of targeted groups in the community

Community services often address the needs of a specific group, such as:
  • Children
  • Teenagers
  • Women
  • Men
  • Families
  • Senior citizens
  • People with disabilities
  • People with housing difficulties
  • Aboriginal Australians or Torres Strait Islanders
  • Immigrants and refugees
  • People living in rural or remote areas
  • People in crisis
  • People coping in the aftermath of an emergency
  • People with specific health or medical problems.

How to access a community service

Resources that can alert you to the community services relevant to your situation can include:
  • Your doctor
  • Your local community health centre
  • Your local council
  • Front pages of the White Pages (Business and Government) telephone directory
  • Government departments such as the Department of Health, the Department of Human Services or the Family Assistance Office
  • The Community Portal website – for information on government and non-government community services across Australia
  • The Victorian Human Services Directory.

Consider being a volunteer

Many community services rely on volunteers. About 4.4 million Australians are currently volunteers. The personal advantages of volunteering include:
  • Making a difference
  • Supporting an issue you feel strongly about
  • Building self-confidence
  • Acquiring new skills
  • Meeting new people
  • Feeling an enhanced sense of purpose.

Where to get help

  • Your doctor
  • Your local community health centre
  • Your local council
  • Department of Human Services Tel. 1800 783 783

Things to remember

  • Community services offer support to the public.
  • The support may be information, advice, practical help, financial help or a combination of services.
  • The community service may be run by federal, state or local government or by a non-government organisation such as a charity.
References

More information

Carers, caring and respite care services topics

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Support for carers

Day to day caring and support

Content Partner

This page has been produced in consultation with and approved by: Better Health Channel - (need new cp)

Last updated: March 2012

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