COVID-19

We have put together some resources that might be helpful in the current COVID-19 situation

FINDER
Finder contains a wealth of general information and links to trusted sources relevant to the current coronavirus situation. https://www.finder.com.au/coronavirus


HOME CONFINEMENT, MOVEMENT AND GATHERINGS FOR QUEENSLANDERS
This link provides information on requirements for home confinement, movement (including going to work) indoor and outdoor gathering restrictions, advice for accommodation providers, information specific to backpackers, working holiday makers and those on a visa.  It also includes details on how to apply for a visa extension and looking for harvest work. https://www.covid19.qld.gov.au/government-actions/gatherings


JOBS FINDER QUEENSLAND
Queensland Government site that connects you to qualified recruitment agencies in Queensland. Also contains an online TAFE course section that gives you a list of free, online micro courses that you can do. https://www.jobsfinder.qld.gov.au/


INCOME SUPPORTS

CTC's Money Management team is available to provide financial support and advice if you need it. To access this service please call our Kingaroy Office on (07) 4162 7788 or Murgon Office on (07) 4169 5940.

The Money Management team has developed a Hints and Tips for Money Management information sheet particularly for those who will temporarily receive the Coronavirus Supplement payment however the information in this document could be of benefit to anyone experiencing financial stress.

Jobkeeper Payments
JobKeeper Payment supports Australia businesses impacted by COVID-19.  The Australian Taxation Office (ATO) and your employer will work out if their business is eligible for JobKeeper Payment.  You don’t claim this payment.
These payments are expected to last for six months and will cover full time, part time and casual employees who were employed as at 1 March 2020 who are retained in employment as well a sole traders, where the employer has lost 30% of their income.  These payments do not cover people in casual employment who have been employed for less than 12 months. The payment is taxable. https://treasury.gov.au/coronavirus/jobkeeper

Centrelink Financial Assistance
The eligibility criteria for JobSeeker Payment and Youth Allowance for job seekers has been temporarily expanded. Also available to eligible people is the Coronavius Supplement and/or Economic Support Payment for people affected by coronavirus. https://www.servicesaustralia.gov.au/individuals/subjects/affected-coronavirus-covid-19

Disability Support Pension and COVID-19 Payments This factsheet provides information on the way that Centrelink’s new COVID-19 income support payments affect your Disability Support Pension (DSP).

New Zealand Citizens
New Zealand citizens who hold 444 visas are still being urged to return home unless they are still working.
If you’ve lived in Australia continuously for at least 10 years, you may be able to get a one-off period of payment. This is a single period of up to 6 months for the following payments:

  • JobSeeker Payment
  • Youth Allowance

The 10 year period of living in Australia needs to be after 26 February 2001. https://www.servicesaustralia.gov.au/individuals/topics/new-zealand-citizens-claiming-payments-australia/30721#a1

Other Countries
This site deals with agreements that Australia has with other countries to do with social security payments. https://www.servicesaustralia.gov.au/individuals/steps/which-countries-have-international-social-security-agreements-australia/49906


INFORMATION FOR THOSE RENTING

Residential Rental Hub
A central point where you can find information and support on the COVID-19 changes affecting renting in Queensland. https://www.covid19.qld.gov.au/the-hub

The COVID-19 Rental Grant
Funding is available for Queenslanders who have lost their job due to the impacts of COVID-19 and who do not have access to other financial assistance.  This grant is only available to Queenslanders who need it the most and have exhausted all other options. https://www.qld.gov.au/housing/renting/rent-assistance/bond-loan/covid19-rental-grant

Tenants Queensland
Tenants Queensland have developed a fact sheet for tenants and residents whose tenancies are affected by COVID-19. It deals with some of the common issues arising. https://tenantsqld.org.au/coronavirus-covid-19-information-2/

Rent Connect
If you are having issues paying your rent contact Rent Connect. The local office for South Burnett residents is:
Maryborough Housing Service Centre
Phone: (07) 4324 8600 or 1800 623 242 (toll fee within area)
Email: maryboroughhsc@hpw.qld.gov.au


FINANCIAL HELP

If you are struggling to meet your financial obligations you should contact the relevant provider and discuss your situation. Many providers have financial hardship teams that can help you come up with a plan to meeting your financial obligations.

Mortgage Repayments
Many banks have offered home loan customers affected by coronavirus the chance to take a mortgage holiday. This allows affected mortgage holders to pause their loan repayments for a limited time to help relieve pressure on household budgets.  Please contact your individual bank or visit your bank’s website for further details.

Insurance
Contact your insurance provider and speak to them about options if you are unable to pay.

Centrelink
https://www.servicesaustralia.gov.au/individuals/subjects/affected-coronavirus-covid-19

Electricity
Queenslanders are to receive a $200 rebate on their utility bills during the COVID-19 crisis. https://www.qld.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0023/122099/electricity-relief-qanda.pdf

Ergon Energy
Offers a range of options to support people who are having trouble paying their bill. https://www.ergon.com.au/retail/help-and-support/our-response-to-covid-19

National Debt Helpline
Financial Counsellors available over the phone to help people tackle their debt problems. https://ndh.org.au/#page-content

MoneySmart
Best resource to find everything you need to know about money, help, where to go and things to look for. https://moneysmart.gov.au/

Phone Providers
If you are experiencing difficulty paying your phone bill contact your provider and ask to speak to the financial hardship support team

OPTUS
Phone: 1300 308 839 Monday – Friday 8.30 am – 7.30 pm and Saturday 9:00am – 6:00pm
Use the messaging platform as first option as it is likely to get faster response.
Collections Support Phone: 1300 301 276
https://www.optus.com.au/about/legal/financial-hardship
Free data info - https://www.optus.com.au/about/media-centre/media-releases/2020/03/optus-says-yes-to-helping-people-stay-connected-with-additional-data

TELSTRA
132 200 Mon – Fri 8:00am – 5:00pm
https://www.telstra.com.au/aboutus/community-environment/community-programs/adversity-financial-hardship
Free data information - https://www.telstra.com.au/covid19?ti=TR%3ATR%3A17032020%3Apersnew%3Anews%3Anotifbar%3Adef%3Acvr%3Atop%3ADCAHD-4921%3Acvd19

South Burnett Regional Council
Council have a financial hardship policy, call them directly if you need assistance on (07) 4189 9100. SBRC Financial Hardship Policy - https://www.southburnett.qld.gov.au/downloads/file/2030/financial-hardship-policy
Stay Updated on Local Information https://www.southburnett.qld.gov.au/

Vehicle Registration
If you are experiencing difficulty paying your registration you can set up a month by month direct debit online or you can pay the minimum 3 month registration at any Queensland Transport office. https://www.qld.gov.au/transport/registration/fees/pay/directdebit


STAYING MENTALLY HEALTHY

It’s perfectly normal to feel stressed and anxious in the face of so much uncertainty. But there are things you can do to help you cope with and manage those feelings.

  • Keep physical distance, not social distance
  • Staying socially connected is important
  • Plan regular check-ins with family, friends and support systems using technology like FaceTime or Zoom. You can get creative with video calling by playing a game of charades, challenging each other to learn and perform a short dance routine, cooking with each other, having an online dinner party. There are also apps for your smart phone or tablet that are designed for socializing over video.

Help Others - If possible, volunteer or simply help others in your community.  Taking action is empowering and can help ease anxiety or stress.

Establish a Routine - Maintaining a regular schedule can help shift your focus and minimize the impact of the changes to your daily life.

Eat Healthy Foods - Physical health and mental health are closely connected. Eating well is as good for the mind as it is for the body.  If you’ve got extra time on your hands, you can experiment with new ingredients and recipes.

Avoid Too Much Alcohol - Alcohol is fine in moderation but avoid using it as a coping mechanism. Excessive drinking is bad for physical and mental health.

Exercise - If you’re not self-isolating, enjoy a walk or jog outside – just make sure you keep 1.5-metres way from other people. Alternatively, you can use home gym or exercise equipment. You can find aerobics, yoga and other workout videos online or download exercise apps to your smart phone or tablet.

Prioritize Sleep - Quality sleep is essential for physical and mental health. Practice good sleep hygiene by avoiding screens an hour before bedtime and sleeping in a dark, quiet place. 

Avoid Too Much News and Social Media - Keeping yourself informed is important – but it’s important to create boundaries if hearing about the outbreak makes you stressed or anxious. Stay informed from reliable sources like the World Health Organization or the Department of Health rather than exposing yourself to sensationalized news stories.

Where To Go For Support?

It is extremely important to seek out help if you feel you need it.

  • Lifeline - 13 11 14 operates 24 hours a day, 7 days a week
  • Lifeline Text - 0477 13 11 14 operates 6pm – midnight (AEST), 7 nights a week
  • Lifeline web chat operates 7pm – midnight (AEDT), 7 nights a week
  • Kids Helpline – for children that may need support 1800 55 1800 https://kidshelpline.com.au
  • Beyond Blue – 1300 22 4636 https://beyondblue.org.au
  • Headspace - https://www.headspace.com/

USEFUL APPS & RESOURCES

Looking After your Mental/Physical Health

Fit on- free exercise app
Lose weight and get fit anytime, anywhere with free, personalised workout plans. Never pay for fitness again with this free workout & exercise app.

Headspace
The Headspace meditation app teaches you how to breathe, sleep, meditate, and live mindfully. These guided breathing exercises can promote mindfulness and have been proven to improve focus. There is mindfulness training and meditation on everything from managing anxiety attacks, stress relief, breathing, happiness, feeling calm and finding focus. There’s a free Basics course that will teach you the essentials of meditation and mindfulness training

Smiling Mind
It’s a FREE mindfulness meditation app developed by psychologists and educators to assist people in dealing with the pressure, stress and challenges of daily life.

Adult Colouring Book Colour Page
It's the place where you get all the beautiful illustrations, including mandala, zen and animals, along with unlimited choices of colours! A mind journey which makes you anxiety free and stress relieving!

Keeping Social

Houseparty
Play games such as: Trivia, Heads Up, Pictionary etc with up to 8 people (you + 7). It is a video chat app and can just be used to have a video chat with a friend too. Available on Apple and Android devices.

Bunch
An app where you chat with friends, play video games, trivia etc. Available on Apple and Android. Great way to keep in contact with friends and do something fun, whilst stuck at home. Multi-player up to 8 friends.

Discord gaming app
Discord is an all-in-one communication app for your communities, gaming and friends. Chat and have fun in a custom server, where organised text channels and open voice channels make it easy to hop into a game together, plan your next meetup, or just keep in touch throughout the day. https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.discord&hl=en_AU

Educational

South Burnett Libraries Online
Lots of free resources online available from the library, from audio books, to games, explore a different language or find out more about the world we live in. There’s lots to discover.
https://library.southburnett.qld.gov.au/opac/Default.aspx
https://www.southburnett.qld.gov.au/facilities-recreation/libraries/elibrary

Audible
You can listen to your audiobooks anytime, anywhere, whether you’re at home, commuting, at the gym or just doing chores.

Audible Stories
This resource is FREE whilst schools are closed. Stream your favourites straight to your phone, laptop or tablet.

Virtual Tours in 12 Famous Museums
Google Arts & Culture
https://artsandculture.google.com/?hl=en
Google Arts & Culture puts the treasures, stories and knowledge of over 2,000 cultural institutions from 80 countries at your fingertips. From the suffragettes who fought for women’s rights, to performing arts at the Paris Opera, to NASA’s archive of stunning images, discover stories about our cultural heritage. It’s your doorway to explore the art, history, people and wonders of our world.

  • Guggenheim Museum, New York
  • National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.
  • Musée d’Orsay, Paris
  • National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, Seoul
  • Pergamon Museum, Berlin
  • Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam
  • Van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles
  • Uffizi Gallery, Florence
  • MASP, São Paulo
  • National Museum of Anthropology, Mexico City
  • British Museum, London

Duolingo
An app to learn a new language. Learn by playing a game. Practice new words and expand your vocabulary with one quick lesson a day.

Coursera Online Courses
Learn from top instructors in an engaging learning experience:

  • Browse courses in a variety of subject areas, from math to music, to medicine
  • Stream lecture videos online any time or download for offline viewing
  • Earn Course and Specialisation Certificates and share your success with the world
  • Explore new degree programs from top universities from around the world

Khan Academy
With Khan Academy learning app you can study math, science and more at your own pace, anytime and completely free.

PodcastOne
The PodcastOne app is the best way to discover and download Australia’s most popular podcasts in ONE place – for FREE! Listen anywhere... anytime!

Ted
Explore more than 3,000 TED Talks from remarkable people, by topic and mood, from tech and science to the surprises of your own psychology