Click here: VOLUNTEER UPDATE (17 May 2024):

What is happening? 

Able Australia has had to make the difficult decision to stop providing some services in South-East Queensland from 30 September 2024. The decision was made with careful consideration and exploration of other options 

This decision is not a reflection of the great work of the Queensland staff and volunteers. The team has been providing excellent services to the community for over 10 years. In fact there are many instances where the Queensland team has gone above and beyond to support clients during natural disasters, the pandemic and other challenges. 

Funding from the Department of Health and Aged Care is not enough to cover the costs of providing services. We have been looking for solutions to help us continue, but inadequate funding and the rising costs of items like fuel and utilities mean we have been running these services at significant loss. Since 2018 these services have run at a loss of more than $2.2 million and as a not-for-profit organisation we are not in a position to continue to support this.  

The impacted services across Jimboomba, Raceview, Lowood and Southport are: 

  • Commonwealth Home Support Programme:
    – Community transport, including NDIS transport
    – Social Support – individual and group supports
    – Meals on Wheels and Food Pantry
    – Goods, equipment and assistive technology (alarms) 
  • Active Living Program for Seniors 
  • Emergency relief 

We will continue servicing existing clients until 30 September 2024, and are hopeful that the Department of Health and Aged Care will identify a new provider to continue these services after that date. We will work collaboratively with the Department as it searches for a new provider. 

Unfortunately, as a result of this decision, some staff may be offered redundancies.  

We will continue to provide our existing NDIS and DSOA funded services in the region. This includes Supported Independent Living and Positive Behaviour Support Services. 

What does this mean for my volunteer role with Able?  

  • No services will be changing immediately. Our plan is to continue to provide services to our clients through to 30 September 2024.  
  • We hope to work with the Department to find an alternative provider, and we’ll continue to communicate with all our clients regularly and share news about the process.  
  • If any services do change during this time, you’ll be provided with as much notice as possible. 

What does this mean for Able’s clients?  

  • Our clients will continue to receive services through to 30 September 2024.  
  • We’ll continue to communicate regularly and share news about the process.  
  • We want to reassure all our clients that no changes to their services will happen immediately or without as much notice as possible.   

When is this happening? 

  • Able will stop providing these services on 30 September 2024.  
  • We are making this announcement and talking to our staff, volunteers, clients and stakeholders during the week commencing 29 April.  
  • Between now and 30 September 2024 we will continue to provide services to clients and will work collaboratively with the Department of Health and Aged Care.  
  • Our hope is that the Department will be able to transfer the services to another provider. That decision will be made by the Department.  

What have we done to try make these services sustainable?  

We have had extensive discussions with the Department for some time about the inadequate funding of aged care services. This has been an ongoing issue for over ten years, but it has not been addressed.  

Across our programs we have ensured a lean service model, heavily supported by a large force of volunteers and the donation of goods and money.  

We have also made numerous grant submissions to prop up funding along the way.  

However, the gap between the cost of service provision and funding is still too wide.  

 The services being stopped are funded by different funding sources. Why do they all have to go?  

Most of the impacted services are funded under the Commonwealth Home Support Programme (CHSP). However, our services rely on each other to be sustainable, and aren’t viable without the other. 

 What happens next? 

Nothing will change immediately. We will ensure that you’re kept informed about the process leading up to 30 September 2024.  

How can we support each other?  

This may be an unsettled time for many staff, volunteers and clients and we recognise that emotions will come and go over the next few months. We will provide as much support as possible during this time. 

Likewise, we hope that

  • our staff, volunteers and clients will support each other, and work together to ensure that services continue to be provided with minimal disruption;
  • that volunteers realise the immense value that they bring to the services provided; and
  • that staff are recognised for the critical support that they provide as part of these programs. Please continue to support each other during this time and reach out to your usual Able team member or EAP if you need help.  

It is important to remember that staff and volunteers have each played an important role in these services over the years, and provided excellent services to the community. 

 What do I need to do? 

There’s nothing you need to do at this time. We’ll keep you informed and provide you with as much notice as possible if anything is going to change for you.  

Please ensure that we have your current email address and contact details so we can keep you informed. 

Who can I contact if I have questions? 

Feel free to speak with your usual Able team member or email people@ableaustralia.org.au 

If you need additional support, please consider using our employee assistance program, D’Accord, by calling 1300 130 130 or emailing enquiries@daccordoas.au. 

Volunteer information sheet