CareWorks

CareWorks Partners are churches or agencies which enter into a partnership with CCVT through Churches of Christ Community Care, a Public Benevolent Institution (PBI), which is tasked to care for the poor, the sick, the marginalised, and the vulnerable in our society.

This partnership provides affiliated churches and agencies with tax deductibility for all donations to CareWorks projects and a range of other benefits, including seed funding and assistance with grant applications. CareWorks partners are active across Victoria and Tasmania.

For further information on each partner, please contact the church or agency directly. The list featured here is not exhaustive.

You can also donate directly to any CareWorks Partner through Pushpay.

CareWorks Partners


Since 2000, Chelsea CareWorks has provided a free Big Breakfast on Wednesday mornings to between 80 and 100 persons of all ages—from school children to older persons. Many attendees are representative of the lower socio-economic area of the surrounding community; many are on pensions, homeless, and/or experiencing physical or mental health issues. 

Chelsea CareWorks also provides light snacks on Tuesday and Thursday mornings. Research indicates that sharing around a meal leads to a reduction in loneliness and isolation, and increases friendships and access to support networks.

Chelsea CareWorks also provides other programs to assist those who feel excluded in society and gives them a caring and welcoming place to come 7 days a week. These programs include Ladies in the Shed, Men’s Shed, Friday afternoon games, Kidzone Holiday Programs, Healthy Living Seminars, and a pantry to provide non-perishable food and toiletries for those in crisis.

Other programs include Karate, AgeStrong exercises for older persons; Kumon,  teaching English and Maths; and Music with Mummies.

The site is open 7 days a week with an average of 300-350 persons passing through each week, attending the various activities. 

Chelsea CareWorks is managed by Chelsea Community Church of Christ.

Contact

3-5 Blantyre Avenue CHELSEA, VIC 3196

Mail to: P.O. Box 357 CHELSEA, VIC 3196

P: 03 9773 0301

E: chelseacofc@optusnet.com.au

W: chelseacareworks.org.au

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A social group for Men over the age of 18 of all faiths and cultures where they can meet and make new friends, travel to places of interest, partake of indoor and outdoor activities and learn new skills (cooking/gardening/computers) and benefit their health through workshops and presentations.

Codger’s Capers is run by a Committee of Management who presents the various activities. Our programmes reach out to all men who may be lonely, widowed, divorced or socially isolated. Our Garden & Cooking programme grows, harvests, and prepares cooked, frozen meals for distribution to the homeless and those in need.

Codger’s Capers meets every Tuesday (except public holidays) between 10am and 3pm at the Church of Christ Hall. New members are always welcome.

Contact

105 Corio Street (Cnr. Corio & Nixon) SHEPPARTON VIC 3630

P: 03 5821 7699

M: 0419 307 005

E: fwbc001@gmail.com

W: codgerscapers.com

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FoodBank Manor Lakes exists to provide non-perishable food and other items to people in need. They strive to assist in ways that enhance the dignity, respect, and self-care of everyone involved.

If you share in their vision—a vision that provides and fosters community support and meets the needs of people who are often overlooked by other formal services—and want to participate, the following items will be gratefully received and can be left at the Wyndham Vale Community Learning Centre reception area.

Non-perishable food items: Breakfast cereals, pasta, canned goods, pot noodles, peanut butter, vegemite, UHT milk, sugar, tea, coffee, Milo, biscuits, cordial, pasta sauce, etc.

Sanitary items: Toilet paper, bath soap, shampoo, nappies, ladies’ napkins, toothpaste, laundry powder, etc.

Clothing items: Good clean women’s and children’s clothing items.

FoodBank Manor Lakes is open every Wednesday 12pm – 2pm at the Wyndham Vale Community Learning Centre.

Contact

8 Manor Lakes Boulevard, Wyndham Vale 3024

Mail to: P.O. Box 669, Werribee VIC 3030

T: 0422 381 514

E: office@newstart.org.au

W: newstart.church/connect/foodbank.html

Facebook: facebook.com/community.food.assistance

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Foothills Community Care has been providing support to local people in the Ferntree Gully and Dandenong Ranges communities since 2001.

On Monday and Wednesday nights (except January) free Community Meal Nights are held in Upwey and Ferntree Gully for those who are struggling with food insecurity, who are vulnerable and disadvantaged. Participants include people with various forms of mental illness, single parents, people from local boarding houses and the elderly. A delicious home cooked meal is provided each week as well as a safe and positive atmosphere for people to connect and belong.

The Ferntree Gully Christmas Day Lunch is also held on December 25, since 2001 and is attended by over 200 people each year.

Community Casseroles commenced in 2015 and cooks and distributes around 180 frozen home cooked meals to those in need within the local hills community.

Contact

Mail to: PO Box 10, Ferntree Gully 3156

T: 03 8711 8677

E: enquiries@foothillscare.org.au

W: foothillscare.org.au

Facebook: facebook.com/FoothillsCommunityCare

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Using the medium of theatre, Fresh encourages the strong, gives support to the timid, reminds the indifferent, and warns the oppressor.

Fresh Theatre for Social Change is a not for profit theatre company primarily focused on achieving social change through the use of applied theatre techniques. Applied Theatre is the use of theatre to accomplish nontheatrical objectives. Fresh uses a range of applied theatre practices to bring about societal development and personal growth in the community, corporate and education sectors

Founded in 2002, Fresh began as a youth theatre in the eastern Melbourne suburbs specifically aimed at supporting young people in difficult life circumstances and personal crisis. The program has successfully served youth in several locations within the Maroondah, Knox and Whitehorse Councils and over 2000 young people have walked through the doors since inception. Fresh has venues for its youth theatre program in Bayswater, Blackburn, Templestowe, Ringwood, and Elsternwick.

Plans are underway to continue this expansion to six more sites throughout Victoria in the next three years.

The unique approach inherent in every Fresh program is grounded in the belief that effective, resilient and healthy young people are an integral asset to every community. The leadership of Fresh believe in connecting, supporting and building positive relationships with young people. It is because of this belief that the Fresh theatre has the ability to transform the lives of young people by providing them with the resources to live amazing, positive and effective lives.

The Fresh team runs programs tailored to Youth, Young Adults, Primary School aged young people, and develops projects tailored to the needs of the community.

Contact

104 Beverley St Doncaster East 3109

T: 0432 400 844

E: info@freshtheatre.org

W: freshtheatre.org

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Friends of Dismas is a church for parolees, ex-prisoners, and their family and friends.  Dismas is the traditional name of the repentant thief mentioned in Luke 23: 40-43.

Friends of Dismas meets each Wednesday at 2:30pm at Melbourne Welsh Church at 320 Latrobe St, Melbourne.

Each week attendees share a cuppa, people share how their week has been, have a bible study, and finish with communion and prayer requests. On the last Wednesday of each month, an attendee shares their story.

Freinds of Dismas seeks to support people as they transition from prison into the neighbourhood, and hold them accountable to the community that surrounds them. The aim is to be a safe place where people can be heard but know they are not judged. Many have such painful stories and need to seek healing and God’s forgiveness in their lives.

Friends of Dismas endeavour to encourage attendees as they grow in their faith, to live a crime-free life, offering them friendship and supporting them on their journey.  

The aim is for there to be ‘No More Victims’; a safer society.

Transition 24

transition 24 logo

The t24 (Transition 24) program is a partnership between Prison Fellowship Victoria and Friends of Dismas. The aim of the program is to provide practical support to ex-prisoners during their first 24 hours of release and then offer on-going mentoring support for the subsequent 12 months. It is our hope that his will have a positive impact on how the released person integrates back into society and will result in a reduction in recidivism rates for those able and willing to participate in the program. This is also an opportunity to share the gospel of Jesus Christ through action and care to vulnerable ex-offenders.

The specific group for whom this program has been developed are prisoners who are socially isolated. They are typically aged 50 or over, have no supportive family connections in the wider community, and they have no positive social networks outside prison. People being released under these circumstances are quite often lacking in the skills and social connections which we take for granted. As such, they are vulnerable to returning to prison which may be a situation with which they are more familiar. The provision of mentoring support and the opportunity to engage in community through Friends of Dismas can have a positive impact in addressing the sense of isolation that many people in this situation are forced to endure.

Friends of Dismas will arrange for a person to act as a mentor for the participant. They will make contact either in person or by phone within the first day or two of a participant’s release and will continue to make contact on a regular basis. The format of the mentoring relationship, frequency of contact and methods of engagement are at the discretion of Friends of Dismas. It should be noted though that monthly contact with a participant who is continuing in the program would be considered a minimum.

For more information about this program, please contact Friends of Dismas.

Contact

P: 0438 370 082

E: dismasfriends@gmail.com

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ORIGINS

Early in 2012, several folks were reflecting on the need for supporting people who were leaving prison. They spent time with people who were interested in meeting this need within Churches of Christ, the Baptist Church, and Prison Fellowship Victoria.

Prison Fellowship volunteers visit over 400 prisoners face to face each month. Over the years the team has become aware of people who either return to their Christian faith or begin a spiritual journey while inside prison. Some of them, because of their convictions, find it difficult to fit into a ‘normal church’ fellowship, especially those on supervision orders where it is not appropriate for them to be in certain situations.

Friends of Dismas spent time with senior police and those who head up Corrections looking at the possible problems of offering a gathering where ex-offenders could come together and share a meal and fellowship, without breaking laws. They have also been most helpful in getting this program up and running. Police have directed people who are in need or isolated to us for support.

Friends of Dismas is made possible thanks to the generous support of volunteers, donations and the many people who pray faithfully for this valuable ministry.

Heavenly Ware Op Shop is open Tuesday to Thursday between 10am to 4pm and is run by Frankston Church of Christ.

Heavenly Ware Op Shop provides its team with the opportunity to engage with the local community surrounding our church facilities in Cranbourne Road.

This initiative is designed to reach the socially isolated and financially disadvantaged with the love of God through real action to meet their needs through the provision of food and/or clothing to those in need around Frankston.

The team is also building closer ties with other churches and community groups so that more people know of how they can help and we can know more people who will benefit from our connection and support.

The team have started the journey towards thousands of enjoyable experiences occurring between people, in both the shop and the garden, as they share God’s love with others.

Contact

130 Cranbourne Rd, FRANKSTON VIC 3199

T: 0479 038 212

E: heavenlyware@frankstoncoc.com.au

W: frankstoncoc.com.au

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Food, conversation and a warm welcome is what you will find every Tuesday at Helping Hand Café at Williamstown Church of Christ. Everyone from the community is invited to Helping Hand Café, where they offer a free two-course meal, free grocery items to take away, and a warm and welcoming atmosphere where everyone is welcome. One regular guest said he feels like Café is “his big family”—exactly the purpose of Helping Hand Café. Those who come along come not just because of the delicious meal provided, but also for the relaxed and friendly atmosphere where they can connect with others and enjoy good company as well as a nutritious lunch.

Join Helping Hand Café anytime from 11.30am Tuesdays for coffee and a chat before the meal is served at 12 noon. Helping Hand Café is run by a team of dedicated volunteers who have run the program since it began in 2005.

Helping Hand Café is so much more than a meals ministry. It has been instrumental in the life of the church and wider community in offering a helping hand when needed, a warm welcome, practical service, and lifting people’s spirits with hope.

Helping Hand Café takes a break over some school holiday periods/public holidays so please contact the team to confirm current schedule.

Contact

Corner Douglas Parade and John St (119 Douglas Parade) WILLIAMSTOWN VIC 3016

Mail to: PO Box 137 WILLIAMSTOWN VIC 3016

T: 03 9397 5715

E: office@willichurch.org.au

W: willichurchorg.au/ministries

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Ignite is a grassroots, community-based not-for-profit organisation that works with young people from disadvantaged, culturally-diverse and refugee backgrounds in Greater Dandenong. Ignite partners with secondary schools to run after school sports programs, mentoring groups and camps that increase the social connectedness and emotional health of teenagers who’ve experience disadvantage or are from culturally-diverse backgrounds. Ignite trains young adult volunteers to be leaders and positive role models for young people. 

Ignite is also designing a group mentoring program incorporating a contemporary rites of passage to assist young people in their life transitions for other community groups and church’s to run in their community. 

Contact

Level 1, 7 Fiveways Boulevard 

KEYSBOROUGH, VIC, 3173

T: 0411 306 678 

E: ignite@ignite.org.au

W: ignite.org.au

Facebook: facebook.com/igniteau

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MAD Wheels (Making a Difference Wheels) and MAD Wheels Youth are run by Door of Hope Christian Church, Launceston, and operate out of a professional workshop located in the Door of Hope complex. Both programs have great support from many community businesses assisting in their development and ongoing running.

MAD Wheels exists to provide motor vehicles free of charge to people in need in the Launceston community. People in the community are asked to donate their old vehicles, which are then refurbished. Some refurbished vehicles are then donated, some are sold (for necessary cash flow and sustainability). Some vehicles from the community are used for parts and others are sold for scrap metal. MAD Wheels is a totally volunteer program that operates on a Monday evening, providing a fantastic community of like-minded car lovers to work together for a great cause.

MAD Wheels Youth Mission exists to assist students to progress to responsible adulthood through mentoring and support while giving them access to practical mechanical skills and training. MAD Wheels Youth provides a program for students that are struggling in the conventional teaching environment. Students get their hands dirty working in a workshop environment, while being taught and mentored by trades’ people.  MAD Wheels Youth operates on a Tuesday and Wednesday during school hours with the help of volunteers, providing a safe and supportive community for students to attend.

Both programs exist to provide much needed assistance to struggling people in the community while providing a safe place that people love to attend and work together for the greater good of the community. 

Contact

50 Glen Dhu St, SOUTH LAUNCESTON, TAS, 7249

P: 6344 8450

E: info@door-of-hope.org

W: door-of-hope.org

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Since about 2001, Door of Hope Christian Church has been holding Super Heroes Camps. These camps are held every six months and are now well known in the community for the difference they make in the lives of children and families from  Launceston who are experiencing tough family circumstances.

These biannual weekend camps cater to children in Grades 1-3 and 4-6 and offer some respite to families encountering challenging circumstances such as financial crisis, addiction, domestic abuse, or disability. Many camp participants have faced adversities of this kind throughout their lives and suffer subsequent developmental problems including low self-esteem and behavioural disorders. The primary intent of a Super Heroes camp is to provide each child with a time of encouragement, positivity and fun—three things that may be quite rare in their experience.

Every participant is paired with an older ‘buddy’ (a volunteer from the Door of Hope congregation who possesses a valid WWCC) to act as care-giver, companion, and mentor for the duration of the camp. Children and buddies share meals and join in a range of activities such as crafts and outdoor challenges. Short age-appropriate educational sessions are also delivered to help children gain understanding of basic life skills and positive values. The children also receive a hand-crafted rug, personal toiletries, and other gifts to take home as mementos of their time at camp.

At all times, buddies are available to listen and talk, answer questions, and respond to children’s needs. In many cases, the relationship formed between child and buddy extends beyond the camp’s conclusion and becomes a valued support for the child and family. Frequent referrals to the Super Heroes program are received from school social workers, and community service agencies including Glenhaven Family Care and the Launceston City Mission.

Many families who have connected through these camps also receive Christmas hampers, and other opportunities to participate in youth and family activities at Door of Hope.

Contact

Door of Hope Christian Church

50 Glen Dhu St, South Launceston TAS 7249

T: 6344 8450

E: ann.fair@door-of-hope.org

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Each term Thornbury Church of Christ, in partnership with Breakaway Camps, runs a parent forum to provide a space for those raising young people to discuss the challenges that they are facing, in a safe and supportive environment. They provide resources to help equip parents to nurture their children in a more holistic way as they navigate this rapidly changing world around them with their children. They see this as an important community engagement project that provides relevant support to their neighbours.

Contact

390-398 St Georges Rd, THORNBURY VIC 3071

T: 03 9484 2918

E: sue@thornburychurch.org.au

W: thornburychurch.org.au

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As the saying goes, it takes a village to raise a child. Village Play is a playgroup that deliberate focuses on developing 0-5 year olds and their families through authentic relationships and supportive networks.

A village is a community where people know each other and help each other succeed. This is the kind of community the team wants to be and want people to be part of. Village Play is a place where parents and children can come to grow, learn, have fun, and belong.

Village Play partners with other children's learning programs such as Mini Maestroes and Kids Shine to offer more than just another playgroup space. Run by Brighton Church of Christ, it is part of the Village Brighton network of family-focused programs. Families who attend the playgroup have access to other Village Brighton initiatives designed to nurture healthy families and foster genuine communities.

Contact

58 Wilson Street Brighton

T: 03 95921531

E: info@villagebrighton.org

W: villagebrighton.org

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The Centre is a positive and culturally safe place for local Indigenous youth living in and around Dareton (NSW). The Centre works with agencies and organisations to run art groups, a textile and sewing group, a music and band project, as well as drop-in facilities. The centre is open for children and youth from 3:30pm to 6.30pm Monday to Thursday. Everyone is warmly welcomed to enjoy the facilities.

John Saulo pioneered the Centre with the purpose of building dignity and wellbeing. The community centre is going from strength to strength in 2017 with the new manager, Ilker Deli, who is supported by Jacqui Pasquale and the team from the Wentworth Joint Parish. 

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Dareton Youth and Community Drop-In Centre is also supported through GMP.




History of Community Care


The initial focus of Churches of Christ in Victoria and Tasmania (then two separate conferences) was on evangelism and planting churches. In common with other religious organizations, in the late 1800s ‘Churches of Christ’ held their annual conferences for the purposes of devising plans for the co-operative work of evangelization. The churches working harmoniously together for the consolidation and extension of the Kingdom of God.

Within this wider CCVT narrative, the story of Community Care is the story of God’s people reaching out to care for people who were in need of support and assistance. The story also includes the stories of visionary leaders who were committed to discovering relevant ways in their context to love God and to love people, and so to announce the Kingdom.

In 1921 the ‘Churches of Christ Anti Liquor Temperance and Social Questions Committee’ was elected at that year’s Churches of Christ in Victoria Annual Conference. By 1923 it had been re-named the ‘Social Services Committee’. The Social Services Committee was established to provide material help to needy persons and families, and to give assistance to those with personal family problems. In June 1925, confronted with the social and economic problems created by World War 1, and with the great Depression beginning, the Committee resolved to appoint a part-time worker. The work had expanded enormously, particularly in the following areas: Meeting immigrants and arranging hospitality, investigating cases of charity, and responding to their needs; and finding employment for the unemployed.

By 1935 a benevolent fund known as the Christian Fellowship Association was established by the Committee. The purpose of the CFA was to provide interest free loans to people experiencing financial difficulty. Also during the 1930s a Fund to provide a ‘Home for the Aged’ was established, beginning a long Churches of Christ involvement with aged care, as an expression of the ministry of Jesus. In the 1940s Community Care’s work of ministry and mission included care for the aged, chaplaincy to migrants following World War 2, industrial and hospital chaplaincy, and support for local church welfare programs. In the 1950s the Victorian and Tasmanian Conferences merged. By 1979 the CCVT Social Services Department (formerly Committee) had changed its name to the Department of Community Care. From the 1990s Community Care took steps to reconnect with churches and to partner them in community mission through CareWorks. This was a strengthening of an aspect of Community Care’s charter to be actively involved in public benevolence activities.

In 2011 Community Care transferred the management of three of its aged care facilities, Oak Towers, Arcadia and Betheden, to Churches of Christ Care, Queensland. A fourth facility was sold, with the proceeds being invested as a financial basis for a newly shaped Community Care that would re-focus on public benevolence and community engagement.

Unlike large welfare agencies which provide centralised community services on behalf of their churches, in Churches of Christ care most often occurs at the coalface through churches and agencies. This is consistent with the Churches of Christ theology that every church member is a minister.

Community Care now exists as a legal entity within CCVT, supporting the work of CareWorks partners and groups seeking to provide care and support to those in need in local neighbourhoods. CareWorks partners continue to have profound effects on their neighbourhoods every day, offering friendship, support, and care to vulnerable people.




CareWorks Forms


Seed Funding is a way to kick start your church or agency's vision for a socially benevolent project or undertaking.

For more information, click here.

The following reporting document is required of all CareWorks partnerships annually. The information you provide will assist us in maintaining legal requirements as well as providing feedback to assist to identify key areas for us to serve and support you in your ministry.

We would also like the opportunity to share with the wider Churches of Christ community what you are doing and how they can pray for your work in the community. Please share your stories, prayer and praise points both now and all year round for us to pass on to others. 

When sharing stories and prayer points, please maintain the confidentiality of those involved as required. We will assume that stories and prayer points can be shared with the Churches of Christ wider community and those names and details have been changed sufficiently where necessary unless otherwise specified.

Access Annual Report Form