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Melbourne, 15 May 2023 - A new group of Elder Abuse Bilingual Community Educators were trained last week by Seniors Rights Victoria (SRV), in collaboration with the Ethnic Communities Council of Victoria (ECCV).
ECCV's Elder Abuse Prevention Community Education training program is designed to prepare members of culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) communities to deliver community education on elder abuse.
SRV's collaboration with the ECCV’s Elder Abuse Program has existed for several years; hundreds of Bilingual Community Educators have successfully completed a specially designed two-day program.
"Training cultural educators to raise awareness of elder abuse in CALD communities within the state is a very important part of the prevention program at Seniors Rights Victoria," said SRV Manager and Principal Lawyer, Avital Kamil.
Equipped with training and dedicated, culturally-appropriate resources in a range of community languages, the Bilingual Community Educators work with a variety of seniors' organisations and community groups to help prevent elder abuse and safeguard the rights, independence, and dignity of older people.
“The critical role SRV plays in our communities across Victoria cannot be overstated,” said CEO of COTA Victoria and Seniors Rights Victoria, Chris Potaris. “A lot of the educational work we’re undertaking at SRV is significantly underfunded, resulting in a blow out to our response and waiting times for older Victorians seeking our services, currently, that waiting list stands at 5 weeks.
“We’ve also seen a steep rise in the number of calls received to our Helpline over the past few months, that rise equates to a 39% increase and is putting significant pressure on our services, staff, and the people most at risk.”
The training comes ahead of World Elder Abuse Awareness Day (WEAAD), which takes place annually on 15 June. Seniors Rights Victoria will be hosting several events around Victoria as the world unites to voice its opposition to physical, social, financial, psychological, or sexual abuse inflicted upon older people.
Seniors Rights Victoria encourages those around Victoria, Australia and the world to host events raising awareness of WEAAD. A list of existing events, and the ability to register your own event, is available through the WEAAD website.
To enquire about the ECCV's Elder Abuse Prevention Community Education training program, or programs run by Elder Abuse Bilingual Community Educators, visit the ECCV website, email the ECCV or call (03) 9354 9555.
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Seniors Rights Victoria (SRV) is a program of COTA Victoria and the key state-wide service dedicated to advancing the rights of older people and the early intervention into, or prevention of, elder abuse in our community.
SRV has a team of experienced advocates, lawyers, and social workers who provide free information, advice, referral, legal advice, legal casework, and support to older people who are either at risk of or are experiencing elder abuse. SRV supports and empowers older people through the provision of legal advice directly to the older person.
Council on the Ageing (COTA) Victoria is the leading not-for-profit organisation representing the interests and rights of people aged over 50 in Victoria. For over 70 years, we have led government, corporate and community thinking about the positive aspects of ageing in the state.
Today, our focus is on promoting opportunities for and protecting the legal rights of people 50+. We value ageing and embrace its opportunities for personal growth, contribution, and self-expression. This belief drives benefits to the nation and its states alongside communities, families, and individuals.