A pilot project that seeks to change violent behaviour of teenagers towards their parents is currently underway as a result of a Latrobe Health donation to family support agency Quantum Support Services.
Latrobe Health donated $350,000 to Quantum in May of last year as part of a $1M community support package in response to the Coronavirus pandemic.
The package aimed to support families and young people experiencing mental illness and family violence, many of them as a result of increased financial stress and social isolation.
Quantum used its donation to set up the pilot project and employ two Specialist Family Violence Youth Workers to provide an outreach service to assist with information, advice and referrals for adolescents who are violent in the home.
The community support donations were in addition to an $8M Member Support Package that included a six-month freeze on premium increases, support for those on JobKeeper and JobSeeker and rollover of unused extras benefits.
Enhancing family safety
Quantum Executive Director Cindy Pullar said the pilot project enhanced family safety by working directly with the young people who are demonstrating violence and abusive behaviour in the home as a direct result of their experience of family violence.
She said teens and their families experiencing this form of violence need a specialised approach to establish safety in the home and restore family relationships.
“We help the young people to understand and regulate their behaviour and develop a sense of empathy and compassion for others,” she said.
The service is running in three regional Victorian municipalities, with participants receiving approximately 20 weeks of intensive case management.
The program will be evaluated at the completion of the 12-month pilot, due to be completed March 2022 with recommendations from the evaluation guiding Quantum’s work with adolescents in future.
Latrobe Health filling the pantry for vulnerable families
Latrobe Health’s donation to Quantum is also helping put food on the table for Victorian families dealt the double whammy of bushfires and Coronavirus restrictions.
Of the $350K donation to Quantum, $30,000 has been allocated to support a food pantry at the East Bairnsdale Community Hub over a three-year period.
he food pantry is a place where individuals and families can collect groceries, enjoy a community lunch and company.
More than 850 visits to the food pantry over the 2020-21 financial year have helped vulnerable people, many of them frail, elderly people and families who otherwise may have gone hungry.
Latrobe Health CEO Ian Whitehead said the food pantry had also proven an important place for people to connect.
“I’m told the hub has also helped create a sense of connection, inclusiveness and safety, supporting mental health and wellbeing,” he said.
“This aspect of the service has been very important in transitioning the community from the COVID lockdowns experienced across the state and assisting the social recovery from the 2020 bushfire crisis.”
Healthier communities thanks to Latrobe Health members
Latrobe Health CEO Ian Whitehead said fund members could feel proud of the care shown for those doing it tough within our communities.
“As a not-for-profit private health insurer, we’re here to support our members and the communities in which they live,” Ian said.
“We’re grateful for the support from our members for these donations and we hope that they share our pride in making a real difference for people in what has been a particularly challenging period.”
The donations are an example of Latrobe Health living its values of trust and respect, shared results, accountability and empowerment, Ian said.