Opportunity to discuss issues facing Centrelink recipients in Bendigo

A meeting will be held this week to scope out the possibility of a support network for local Centrelink clients.

Organiser Peter Cox said the meeting would be open to all recipients of Centrelink support to discuss issues they faced.

He said these might include opportunities to earn additional income while on Centrelink payments and identifying employment gaps in the local market.

“Most people have ideas and skills but do not have an outlet to use them,” Mr Cox said.

Knowing what resources were available through Centrelink was also important, he said.

Mr Cox said it could be difficult to manage daily living amid rising costs, and he felt there were not enough people speaking up for low-income earners.

He said such a network would give people receiving Centrelink payments the opportunity to support one another.

The meeting will be held in the Bendigo Library activity room on Tuesday, June 20 at 11am.

Those receiving payments through Centrelink can access some other forms support from the Department of Human Services.

Eligible job seekers may be referred to one of a number of organisations that can assist them in finding work.

Community engagement officers can help people access information, payments and services if they have complex needs and difficulty managing their income support requirements.

Those who are homeless or at risk of homelessness can receive help from social workers, who can provide short-term counselling and support, and can refer onward to other services.

The Financial Information Service holds seminars and offers advice on preparing for retirement, while people affected by family violence can be assisted with counselling and referrals.

There is also assistance for migrants and refugees, including multicultural service officers.

For more information on government services, visit www.humanservices.gov.au.