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Caring for the ‘hidden' carer

Navigating through the maze of carer support services may now be made easier for the number of ‘hidden' carers who don't receive, or aren't aware of the types of assistance available, after an expo dedicated to carers gets underway today by Victorian aged care provider, Villa Maria.

Noeline Cosier, a Villa Maria client who is the carer of her husband with dementia, says she had no idea of the support available to help keep people at home.

Villa Maria Commonwealth Respite and Carelink Centre and Community Support North East (CSNE) are reaching out to carers like Mrs Cosier, as well as seniors and people with a disability living across the Wangaratta regions, to them know support is at hand.

“We’re damn well lucky to live where we do. I don’t know how people would cope without these services,” Mrs Cosier says.

The Journey Through Life expos showcase a variety of support services available to carers, older people and people with a disability. The expo includes guest speakers, interactive sessions, such as walking stick checks and demonstrations on posture and exercise, as well as cooking demonstrations and service provider stalls.

Sarah Whiley, Villa Maria community engagement and liaison worker, says it’s a “great tool” for ‘hidden’ carers who don’t receive services and raising awareness of what’s out there.

“Many people simply do not know these services are available or how to access them, so our primary aim is to enhance navigation through the ‘maze’ of services,” Ms Whiley says.

The first Journey Through Life expo is held at Wangaratta Performing Arts Centre today (Tuesday, 18 March 2014), from 10am to 2:30pm. A second expo will be held at ‘The Cube’ in Wodonga on Thursday (20 March 2014), from 10am to 2:30pm.

Bookings are preferred. Call Marcia at Community Support North East on (02) 6055 3400.

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