Parents of school aged kids – this is for you.

Learning to Grow – parents of school age children (primary or secondary) who are looking at returning to work/education study or have been out of the workplace for some time, this is for you!

Bring along your pre-school child/ren and while they have some fun with a carer you get to have some fun with Jess the Learning to Grow facilitator.

It’s about helping you as an adult achieve your goals, build confidence, identify your transferable skills, develop a resume and build on your interview skills.  

This program is FREE and will run Thursdays April 29 – June 24, 10am – 12 pm.

Bookings are essential and can be made using the button below. Or you can call Jess at Milpara who will be back after school break on Monday April 19 56552524, alternatively email her on milparaL2G@outlook.com.

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Just for the gals

This term we have a couple of courses designed specifically for women,because sometimes things can just feel awkward and being “just” gals removes that barrier.  So with some fabulous female tutors leading the way, we have the following empowering courses:

Women in Shed – designed to help women build their confidence and capacity to use hand and power tools as they work on a variety of projects involving timber, tiles and metal. More information click here.

Women’s Financial Wellbeing – Talking money can feel awkward, but it is an important step in reaching financial security.This course is designed to build knowledge skills and confidence around managing money and financial security. More Information Click Here.

Wonder Women Support Group – peer support for women survivors of trauma and/or abuse.  Its about moving on with life, recognise the strength within, and embrace your inner “wonder woman”.
More Information Click Here.

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Term 2 2021

We’re looking forward to a BLOOMING good Term 2.  With a few exciting additions including:

  • Games, Puzzles, Crosswords and more – keep your brain active and enjoy some company.
  • Capture your treasured memory – Julie would love to help you document a memory, anecdote or short story.
  • Come Chat-with Julie -Treat yourself and get out of the house, have a cuppa and share some smiles with good company.
  • and more!

Accredited Training

Food Safety and RSA Courses are back in the house in-person. 
Both courses are scheduled for Thursday June 3.
Prefer on-line? Please contact Milpara.

We have had some interest in running another Test & Tag Course, please let us know ASAP if you are interested.  If we have sufficient interest we will set a date.

For more information on these and other accredited training click here.

Just a reminder that first aid courses need to be booked directly with Victorian First Aid. Click here to be directed to their website.

We have a new online booking system! 
You can now book and pay online from the comfort of home.   Don’t worry you can still enrol at reception the same as usual. On the new booking page you will find that all the courses are under categories. If you click on the relevant category e.g  Health and Wellbeing, it will bring up the courses to select from.

Head over to the ‘Bookings for Courses/Activites’ tab for more information.

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Happenings

If you are new to the area we’d love to welcome you!  We have a morning session on Wednesday March 3 to do just that.  It is an opportunity to ask questions about the area, meet some friendly faces.  Let us know if you are planning on attending.

We have scheduled a in person Responsible Service of Alcohol and Food Safety Course in March also, we have not had a lot of people put their name down.  If you are interested please get in touch with Milpara as soon as possible.

Our General Yoga classes have now moved to a Monday morning. 

Our English as a second language classes are all doing really well and it’s lovely to see the smiling faces each week.  If English is not your first language and you would like to further develop your speaking, reading or writing please get in contact.

Milpara is also very excited to have Crafts with Barb back on Friday afternoons. Again please let us know you are attending so we can set up ready for your arrival.

For further information or to let us know you are coming or would like to book into any activity please call Milpara’s friendly staff on 56552524.

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Christmas Gifts Available

We know that this year is going to be hard on some families.

We also know that some family are not accessing services like Salvation Army, St Vincent de Paul etc for assistance.

Milpara has a collection of children’s gifts that we’d like to find appropriate homes for this Christmas Season.

Anyone who would like to see if any of the gifts would be suitable for their family, please drop in before 4.30 pm Friday December 18.

Please note we don’t have much and we don’t have a huge variety, but we’d like to see what we do have brighten some Christmas mornings. We’d also like to remind everyone that we do have the Emergency Foodbank which can be accessed by anyone who is struggling.  While Milpara does close for the school break Foodbank can be accessed during the following hours Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday 10 am – 1pm: as can the Centrelink Agency.

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Writers in Libraries

Writers in Libraries

Milpara was a bit excited to hear about a new program called Writers in Libraries so we thought we would share.

Writers in Libraries is a residency program for local writers in five West Gippsland Libraries (WGL) across South Gippsland. The residencies will spotlight our libraries while supporting creative endeavour among our writers.

Writers will work in a space specifically designated for them in each of the libraries. The writer’s brief will be to develop (one or a series of) essays, short stories, or poems that reflect on people’s experience of COVID-19 in South Gippsland Shire, documenting this extraordinary time for the future. Writers will have access to the WGL collection and the support of librarians for the development of their work.

All pieces will then be printed on posters and displayed in various locations in the Shire for public enjoyment. Posters and their locations can be documented and marketed via a map, forming a ‘cultural trail’, an intriguing opportunity for local tourism in this current environment of restricted travel.

Employment opportunities:

  • There is direct financial benefit to the five writers and in community recognition of their work.

Writers in Libraries is a residency program for local writers in four West Gippsland Libraries (WGL) across South Gippsland. The residencies will spotlight our libraries while supporting creative endeavour among our writers. Writers will work in a space specifically designated for them in each of the libraries. The writer’s brief will be to develop (one or a series of) essays, short stories, that respond to the three themes of isolation, emergence and connection, documenting this extraordinary time for the future. Writers will have access to the WGL collection and the support of librarians for the development of their work.

Interested writers should read the information below and complete this application form to be considered for selection.

Details:

  • Writers must be local to the South Gippsland area
  • Each selected writer will be given a writers fee of $500
  • Works should feature at least one of the following themes: Isolation, Emergence, Connection
  • The libraries hosting writers are Korumburra, Leongatha, Foster and Mirboo North
  • The writing residency will be from 1 February to 28 February 2021
  • An excerpt of the finished work/s will be transposed on to A1 Poster for display across the Shire
  • Finshed works will be printed out and stored at the participating libraries.

Submissions close Friday 8 January 2021
A selection panel of three people will select the five successful writers.

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Keep Orange-ing the World

The Orange the World campaign – 16 days of activism against gendered violence may have finished for this year but that doesn’t mean this is an issue we should put out of mind.

There are a lot of little things we can do that can help change the story. We can do some self reflecting and check in. It might be a simple change of how we say things or what we consider to be acceptable. It might be calling out a comment. It might be considering what books we read to our kids or read ourselves. Every little change we make helps bring about a big change.

The West Gippsland Regional Library stock a wonderful collection of books. What we read has a strong influence on how we think, reading books that promote gender equality where boys and girls as equal is an easy and enjoyable step in the right direction. Below is a list of suggested reading.


The 16 days of activism against Gender Based Violence is not just to acknowledge that there is a problem in our society that need addressing.

It’s not just to learn about the supports and services available.It’s not just about educating ourselves.

It’s not just about starting important conversations and encouraging people to call out behavior.

It’s not just about working together and building greater connections so the system is easier to navigate.

It is, of course, about all of those things but most importantly, it is a CALL TO ACTION, because we know that this issue is not inevitable, it can be changed. However that change cannot happen without buy in. Together you and I we can make a difference. Small actions build and small actions now can equal a big change. To create change we need to understand our bias, recognise our attitudes and acknowledge that those little things we say help create the big problems we face today.

Statistically even if you are unaware, you know someone who has been impacted. So make some time because this is important. Grab a cuppa, sit down and check out ‘the conversation guide’, ‘the respect checklist’, ‘the excuse interpreter’ and talk with your family, your friends and your colleagues and let’s stop it at the start. Together we can change the story and that is what it is all about. It’s not just 16 days, it’s everydayThis link will take you to the suggest cuppa resources: https://www.respect.gov.au/resources/recognising-disrespect/

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Electronic sign in now at Milpara

Well we are all really excited about the new easing of restrictions. Milpara of course has been collecting contact tracing information on anyone entering the house for some time.

However we have just upgraded the pen and paper version and introduced an electronic system. This will mean we can have more people enjoying more activities at Milpara.

We know not everyone has a smart phone so don’t stress we have that sorted too. We will have a tablet available for sign in and if that’s still not your thing our friendly staff will assist you.

We have already assisted a few people to add a QR reader to their phone and they were surprised how easy it is.

Belinda created a quick video on how to download a QR reader onto your smart phone. Please note some new phones and iPhone may not need to install a reader and already have on on the phone. But for many it is a simple step which means you can be using a QR reader on your phone within minutes.

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Jess helping people get connected

WOW! Jess has been really busy making the most of a technology grant Milpara received from the South Gippsland Shire Council.  We feel very fortunate. The grant has allowed us to assist community members to connect to family and friends online.  Not only can we provide 1:1 support to teach the basic skills needed to using a tablet or laptop to connect, but we can also provide the equipment for loan, allowing internet access from the participants home.  For some participants they just need assistance with the equipment they already own including smart phones.  Other participants have enjoyed this fabulous opportunity to find out if online is for them and give it a try without any cost.

As part of this free service, Jess has spent helped many people ‘get connected’.  This means different things for different people.  For some it has been creating Facebook accounts and learning how to use it. One person was so excited to learn she can now book into a bowling club sessions with one click on Facebook! Some participants were amazed to see how many of their friends are already very socially active and now they too are connected. For some participants it has been about learning to reply, send and forward emails including adding attachments like photos. Jess has even helped people to learn the skills to sell online.

The highlight for Jess has been connecting grandparents with their children and grand kids via FaceTime so that they can actually see their faces.  

Milpara still has some tablets and laptops available for loan as well as mobile internet modems.  So if you are looking to connect online or know someone who could benefit from this service please give Milpara a call on 5655 2524 to organise a time with Jess. 

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Korumburra looking beautifully Orange.

Korumburra goes Orange.

We’re sure that people will have noticed our orange flower garden that has popped up just past the Korumburra RSL Hall.  Orange is the colour designated by the UN Secretary-General’s UniTE to End Violence against Women campaign.  As a bright and optimistic colour the flowers represent our wish for our community bloom without violence, put your hand up and let’s change the story together.

If you are experiencing family violence there is help available.   In addition to Safe Steps 1800 015 188 and other services currently being promoted, there are also a variety of specialised services  worth knowing about so we have listed some below.

Djirra Aboriginal Family Violence Prevention and Legal ServicesDjirra is a culturally safe place where culture is celebrated, and practical support is available. 1800 105 303 www.djirra.org.au

Rainbow Door A free specialist LGBTIQ+ helpline providing information, support and referral to all LGBTIQ+ Victorians, their friends and family during the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond. 1800 729 367 www.rainbowdoor.org.au

Seniors Rights Victoria provides information and advice to help prevent elder abuse and safeguard the rights of older people. 1300 368 821 www.seniorsrights.org.au

InTouch Multicultural Centre Against Family ViolenceSpecialist family violence service that works with multicultural women, their families and their communities 1800 755 988 www.intouch.org.au

Money Smart Free and impartial financial guidance and tools you can trust www.moneysmart.gov.au

Milpara Community House is open Monday to Friday, 9.30 am – 4.30 pm. Located at 21 Shellcot Road we house an Emergency Foodbank, Centrelink Agent (Tuesday 10am – 2 pm, Wednesday 10 am – 1 pm and friendly staff available for a chat if required.

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