DHHS Health Advocacy Model Project

Funded by the Victorian Advocacy Futures Grant under the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS), our project is called Health Advocacy Project.   

The project seeks to explore new models of accessing mainstream health system for Victorians who are deaf or hard of hearing. 

The aims of this project are: 

  • Consult with the deaf and hard of hearing community in Victoria about their experiences in the health system; 
  • Develop an advocacy toolkit for deaf and hard of hearing people to support their navigation of the health system; 
  • Develop cultural competency training for staff in the health system. 

We are partnering with the following organisations: 

  • Expression Australia 
  • Health Issues Centre 
  • ASLIA Victoria/Tasmania 
  • Alfred Health 

The project is governed by a Steering Committee, consisting of a representative from each organisation including Deaf Victoria, which meets every two months. 

For research and data collection, we work closely with Expression Australia and Aspex Consulting. One of the major competent of this project is the Literature Review, which will include findings and recommendations based on literature from all over Australia and the world. A final version of this will be made available soon.

We want deaf and hard of hearing Victorians involved in this project by giving them an opportunity to share their experiences through an online survey and community focus groups. 

The online survey will run from Monday 2nd November to Monday 30th November 2020. 

If you would like to share your experiences in Auslan rather than doing the survey in English, you can contact us at info@deafvictoria.org.au to book a 1:1 session or to express your interest in participating in a focus group. 

The 1:1 sessions will be with Catherine Dunn, Individual Advocacy Officer on Thursdays and Fridays during November. The community forums will be held on Thursday 12th, 19th and 26th November 2020 which will be facilitated by Paula Thornton and Catherine Dunn. If you would prefer to do a 1:1 session with a hearing person (Ange Lin from Expression Australia) and an interpreter, this can be arranged. 

We also plan on creating a training package for healthcare staff. This will allow them to become more culturally competent in terms of providing care for deaf and hard of hearing people in the health system. 

This project will wrap up in early 2021. 

For more information about this project, please contact Sherrie Beaver, Project Coordinator at projects@deafvictoria.org.au