Connecting with my community

This information aims to help explain community supports.

In your planning discussion with your TAC Claims Manager, you may talk about the supports available to you in your community.

Many different community supports exist that may help you reach your goals.

How can community support help me?

Everyone benefits from participating in their community in some way.

The way you connect with your community depends on where you live, your usual activities, and what you like to do.

Being involved in your community can:

  • Improve your skills and abilities
  • Help you meet new people
  • Improve your independence
  • Give you confidence to try new things
  • Create a sense of belonging
  • Reduce feelings of loneliness and isolation
  • Improve your health and wellbeing

What types of community support are available?

Community services and groups are available to anyone in the community. Many are free of charge.

The community support you want to take part in will depend on the goals you have identified in your MyPlan.

Some ideas include:

Home living help

This can help you manage your day to day home life. It can include free financial counselling, food services (like Meals on Wheels) and housing services. It can also include things like parenting support, relationship counselling and multicultural support.

Recreation and leisure groups

Access or join one or more community clubs and groups. Examples include:

  • Sporting clubs and disability sporting groups, walking groups, and ABI groups.
  • Established clubs and groups like Apex, Lions and Rotary, community houses, men’s sheds and faith communities.
  • Special interest and hobby groups like bird watching, art or craft groups, book clubs, gardening clubs and music group.

Educational facilities and services

These include adult education centres, TAFEs, libraries and local multicultural services.

Vocational supports

Supports such as trainee programs, supported employment programs and volunteer resource centres.

Health and wellbeing supports

This includes mental health services, like Lifeline Australia, Beyond Blue and Relationships Australia.

It can also include carer support services and peer support groups. Other options include fitness, swimming, yoga, pilates and meditation groups.

Community participation supports

This includes disability advocacy groups, community gardens, community cars, cultural groups and music groups.

Step 1: Finding a community support

Search online

If you know the type of community group or service you want to find, you can use a search engine like Google to find them in your local area.

Enter the type of service or group you are looking for and the area you live. This can provide a list to start from.

Visit local places

Have a look at what is available in your community. Visit your local library, council, visitor information centre, Neighbourhood Houses, and/or Independent Living Centres to see what they offer.

Ask your TAC Claims Manager

Your Claims Manager can also provide a list of community services or groups in your area that you might like to consider.

They can also provide links to helpful websites and other information to help you choose some community supports that will meet your needs.

Step 2: Questions you might ask

Once you have found a community support that looks like a good match with your goals and interests, you can contact them directly to find out more about what they offer.

Some questions you might ask are:

  • What services do you offer?
  • When are you open?
  • When do you meet or how often do you meet?
  • Where are you located?
  • Does it cost anything to join your club or use your services?
  • Is there any criteria to use your services?

For example, there may be a minimum age, gender, uniform, tools or equipment you need to participate.

  • Can you accommodate my needs or disability?

For example, you may have physical or communication accessibility requirements.

  • Can I come along to try it out?
  • Can I bring a support person with me?

Step 3: Your first visit

It can sometimes be challenging going to a new place for the first time, and meeting new people.

The community group or service should be able to provide you with a contact person to meet you for your first visit. Or you may be able to bring a support person with you.

After you have had your first visit with the group or service, you might like to talk to your TAC Claims Manager to let them know how it went.

If it wasn’t what you expected, or you didn’t enjoy the experience, they may be able to share some ideas with you on what you might like to do next.