Older People

We’re here to offer support, companionship and advice for older members of the LGBTI community (50+).

Community Visitor Scheme

CVS-slder

While loneliness and isolation can affect anyone’s mental health, the impact can be more severe for older people.

Our Community Visitor Scheme is all about reducing social isolation of older LGBTI people by providing company and friendship of Volunteer Visitors.

Our trained volunteers make regular one on one home visits where they chat over a cuppa, listen to music, watch a movie or participate in a hobby, game or other activity.

The service operates in Sydney as well as the Hunter, Nepean, Illawarra and Central Coast regions.

The service is available to recipients of Australian Government subsidised Home Care Packages who have been identified by their aged care provider as experiencing or at risk of experiencing social isolation, whether for social or cultural reasons or because of disability.

To get involved as a client, volunteer or service provider please contact us: (02) 9206 2028 or email:communityvisitor@acon.org.au

The LOVE Project

LOVE-slder

The LOVE Project (Living Older Visibly & Engaged) is an ACON initiative that’s all about creating better conversations and improved social engagement with our older LGBTI community members.

By understanding people’s preferences we can facilitate greater social connectivity, improve social inclusion and evolve services to meet the needs of our LGBTI elders.

The friendly health promotion team of the LOVE Project welcomes you to get on board to share experiences, interact with other members of the LGBTI community and create a healthier, active and social lifestyle for yourselves and those around you.

Check out the LOVE website

For more information, contact: Russ Gluyas   |   02 9206 2017  |  rgluyas@acon.org.au

Follow the LOVE Project on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Fact Sheets

HIV & Ageing

HIVageing-slider

People with HIV who commence treatment early and who maintain effective control of their HIV viral load have a life expectancy no different from the general population. This has been clearly demonstrated in large studies of people in high income countries with access to best practice HIV clinical care.

However, HIV infection could still damage the immune system. HIV potentially causes premature ageing of the immune system, which means there may be at risk of disease at an earlier age or at slightly increased rates compared to the general population.

Potential health issues may include cardiovascular disease, cancer, chronic kidney disease, diabetes, osteoporosis, frailty, and neurocognitive deficits.

Find out more about HIV and ageing via the LOVE Project website

HIV Counselling

counselling

We provide FREE and confidential short term counselling (up to 12 sessions) for:

  • People with HIV
  • People at risk of HIV
  • People affected by HIV (e.g. partners, family and friends)
  • People testing for HIV

We prioritise:

  • People newly diagnosed with HIV
  • Financially disadvantaged people
  • People experiencing health or relationship needs related to HIV
  • People experiencing the effects of a recent trauma, domestic/family violence or homophobic/transphobic violence

Counsellors use a solutions focused model drawing on a range of approaches to best meet the needs of individuals and couples.

To access this service, you will need to undergo a brief assessment in person or over the phone.

For more information or to undertake an intake assessment, please contact your nearest ACON office or to enquire about making an appointment click here.

LGBTI Counselling and Support

Counselling

We provide confidential fee-based short term counselling (up to 12 sessions) for LGBTI people seeking support in relation to their mental health and wellbeing. Volunteer counsellors use a solutions focused model and a range of therapeutic approaches to better equip people to deal with life’s challenges.

Fees for this service are negotiated according to individual circumstances, and priority is given to people on low incomes or with limited options.

LGBTI counselling in Sydney is available Tues and Thurs evenings. For appointment options in regional NSW please contact the relevant office.

Unfortunately this service is not suitable for:

  • People assessed to have recent or current risk of suicide
  • People who use violence
  • People with unmanaged or unsupported mental illness or substance use

To access this service, you will need to undergo a brief assessment in person or over the phone.

For more information or to undertake a brief assessment please contact your nearest ACON office or submit an enquiry.

 

If you are experiencing prejudice related violence or harassment here are some options for counselling and support:

  • ACON provides counselling as well as social work support to help people resolve complex or ongoing violence and harassment matters. Call 9206 2000 to make an appointment.
  • QLife provides anonymous and free LGBTI peer support and referral for people wanting to talk about sexuality, identity, gender, bodies, feelings or relationships. For more information click here.
  • ICLC can provide legal support such as assistance with preparing an Apprehended Personal Violence Order. For more information click here.
  • Lifeline provides 24 hour crisis support and suicide prevention services to all Australians experiencing a personal crisis. For more information click here.

Substance Support Counselling

support

We provide confidential FREE short term counselling (up to 12 sessions) for LGBTI people and people with HIV seeking support in relation to their use of alcohol and other drugs.

Our counsellors work from a harm reduction approach to assist clients reach their goals to manage use, reduce or quit.

This service is offered in Sydney. Outside of Sydney, this service is available face to face in Lismore and Newcastle, and by phone or Skype anywhere in regional NSW.

To access this service, you will need to undergo a brief assessment in person or over the phone.

For more information or to undertake a brief assessment please contact our Sydney office or submit an enquiry.

 

Care Coordination

care coordination

Our Care Coordinators are allied health professionals who can help clients with multiple and/or complex needs to:

  • Access relevant healthcare and support services
  • Increase their ability to manage their care and treatment
  • Reduce social isolation

Needs may include:

  • HIV
  • Mental health
  • Alcohol and/or drug use
  • Housing
  • Family/domestic violence
  • Finances
  • Legal

Care coordinators work with clients over 3 months to develop a care plan and provide support to help clients achieve their goals and meet their needs

This service is FREE and confidential.

Priority is given to people with HIV, and people at risk or affected by HIV

Our Care Coordinators work in Sydney at our office in Surry Hills as well as the Taylor Square Private Clinic and Holdsworth House Medical Practice in Darlinghurst.

To access this service, you will need to undergo a brief assessment in person or over the phone.

For more information or to undertake a brief intake assessment, please contact our Sydney office 02 9206 2000 to enquire about making an appointment click here.

 

Regional NSW

Our care coordinators also work in the Hunter and Northern Rivers regions of NSW.

To access this service, you will need to undergo a brief assessment in person or over the phone.

For more information or to undertake a brief assessment please contact our Hunter or Northern Rivers offices or submit an enquiry.

Silver Rainbow LGBTI Aged Care Awareness Training

The Silver Rainbow LGBTI Aged Care Awareness Training program is an essential and relevant one-day training for all workers in the aged care sector. Training helps promote a better understanding of the needs of the LGBTI people and provide staff with more confidence to deliver an inclusive, best practice service.

Find out more about our Pride Training packages and dates here.

Legal Advice

clcCommunity Legal Centres (CLC) provide free legal advice, referrals and some representation to people who live and work in their area.

Community Legal Centres NSW: (02) 9212 7333

iclc

Inner City Legal Centre (ICLC) provides a state-wide specialist free legal advice service for anyone who identifies as LGBTIQ throughout NSW.

(02) 9332 1966

Historical Violence Project

NSW Parliamentary Inquiry into Gay and Transgender Hates Crimes Between 1970 and 2010

The NSW Legislative Council’s Standing Committee on Social Issues has commenced an inquiry into institutional responses to hate crimes committed against members of the LGBTI community in NSW between 1970 and 2010. The inquiry will look into the criminal justice system and whether there were any impediments that impacted the protection of LGBTIQ people in NSW and the delivery of justice to victims of LGBTIQ hate crimes and their families. It will also examine how past impediments have been addressed by current policies and practices. In addition, the inquiry will also investigate the role of the gay panic defence in the culture of LGBTIQ hate crimes during this period, and the extent of its impact in the delivery of justice and the treatment of gay men during criminal investigations and court proceedings.

To find out more about the inquiry, including details about the terms of reference and making a submission, click here.

 

In Pursuit of Truth and Justice: Documenting Gay and Transgender Prejudice Killings in NSW in the Late 20th Century (2018)

In May 2018, ACON launched a report into historical crimes against gay men and trans women in NSW that sought to deliver justice for victims and survivors, and aid the ongoing healing process for loved ones and members of the LGBTI community who continue to be impacted today. The report – In Pursuit of Truth and Justice: Documenting Gay and Transgender Prejudice Killings in NSW in the Late 20th Century – shines a light on the suspected anti-gay homicides that occurred in NSW from the 1970s and 1990s and presents a series of recommendations aimed at achieving justice and healing for victims and survivors, enhancing current responses to hate crimes and strengthening ongoing efforts in violence prevention.

Click here to view/download the report

Click here to view the press release

 

VIDEO: Healing Historical Violence

 

General Support & Services

HIV Prevention

We’re here to help end HIV transmission among older men who are gay or same sex attracted. To find out more please visit our HIV Prevention section.

HIV Support

We’re here to help older LGBTI people with HIV take control of their health by providing up-to-date information as well as a range of programs and services. To find out more please visit our HIV Support section.

Sexual Health and Cervical Screening

Our sexual health programs for gay and bisexual men are inclusive of older men who have sex with men.  To find out more please visit our Sexual Health section.

Our sexual health programs for lesbian, bisexual and queer women are inclusive of older women who have sex with women.  To find out more please visit our Sexual Health section.

We offer cervical screening programs for older lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex people. To find out more please visit our Sexual Health section.

Mental Health

We provide a range of counselling  and community care services for older LGBTI people, including those with HIV or who use drugs. To find out more please visit our Mental Health section.

Alcohol & Drugs

We provide a range of resources and support services to help older LGBTI people who use alcohol and other drugs. To find out more please visit our Alcohol & Drugs section.

Safety & Inclusion

We provide a range of resources and support services to help older LGBTI people who are experiencing homophobic and transphobic violence and discrimination. To find out more please visit our Safety & Inclusion section.

Domestic & Family Violence

We provide a range of resources and support services to help older LGBTI people who are experiencing domestic and family violence. To find out more please visit our Domestic & Family Violence section.