The PRWIRE Press Releases http:// 2017-03-30T23:11:00Z Eaton’s annual Blackout Tracker Report shows 3 million people affected by more than 240 power outages in 2016 2017-03-30T23:11:00Z eaton-s-annual-blackout-tracker-report-shows-3-million-people-affected-by-more-than-240-power-outages-in-2016 Sydney, Australia: Power management company Eaton has today announced the launch of its annual Blackout Tracker Report for Australia and New Zealand (ANZ), which has revealed 3 million people were affected by more than 240 power outages in 2016.   While widespread power failures in South Australia had the largest impact on individuals and businesses, New South Wales topped the list of Australian states for the third year in a row with 33 power outages - while the North Island topped New Zealand with 80 power outages.   “Every state or region in ANZ recorded a rise in power outages, highlighting an increasing need for businesses and consumers to look at the power management strategies and disaster recovery plans they have in place to deal with interruptions,” said Gordon Makryllos, Managing Director Australia and New Zealand at Eaton Industries.   The costs associated with power failures has continued to rise for businesses across the globe. The 2016 Cost of Data Centre Outages report by the Ponemon Institute has found the average cost of a data centre outage in 2015 was a staggering $740,357, up 38 per cent from 2010.    While summer heat waves dominated discussion about power supply, it was the spring season that produced the most power outages in both Australia and New Zealand with more than one third occurring between September and November.   “Australia and New Zealand is a diverse, unique climate where almost 1 in 3 power outages is caused by bad weather and trees, so businesses and individuals need to plan for the unexpected. Uninterruptible power systems (UPSs), generators and power management software solutions can help deliver reliable power during outages – reducing the risk of data loss and costs associated with downtime or IT damage.”   This World Backup Day, Eaton is offering a complimentary consultation and Critical Power Site Audit to all Australian and New Zealand businesses that will assess the business’ vulnerability to power disruption. The consultation will provide businesses with recommendations on the steps that can be taken to minimise business downtime. To register for this complimentary service, click here.   Among the most unusual causes of power outages in 2016 included: Hayes Creek, NT: On 21 October, an olive python snake with a magpie goose in its mouth was found looped over a power line following a 30 minute blackout to the area. Eurobodalla NSW: On 15 April, a flying fox plague caused a large number of safety equipment activations resulting in several blackouts over a period of weeks. Canning Vale WA: On 16 November, the maximum-security Hakea Prison and surrounding areas lost power after an earthing wire was stolen. Bathurst NSW: On 31 November, a flock of birds was blamed for leaving 1,573 customers in the dark after they hit a power line which sparked the outage. Ashburton NZ: On 23 November, a cat was lucky to walk away with its life after a fault man tried to rescue it from a power pole. Instead of climbing down the ladder, the cat climbed higher. The power was cut to help it down safely.    Blackout Tracker Annual Report data is based on a full year of reported power outages across Australia. To view and download the entire report click here. To learn about Eaton’s power management products and services, visit: or -  END -   About Eaton Eaton’s electrical business is a global leader with expertise in power distribution and circuit protection; backup power protection; control and automation; lighting and security; structural solutions and wiring devices; solutions for harsh and hazardous environments; and engineering services. Eaton is positioned through its global solutions to answer today’s most critical electrical power management challenges.   Eaton is a power management company with 2016 sales of $19.7 billion. We provide energy-efficient solutions that help our customers effectively manage electrical, hydraulic and mechanical power more efficiently, safely and sustainably. Eaton is dedicated to improving the quality of life and the environment through the use of power management technologies and services. Eaton has approximately 95,000 employees and sells products to customers in more than 175 countries. For more information, visit     Afford celebrates Harmony Day with music at Oran Park 2017-03-21T00:17:18Z afford-celebrates-harmony-day-with-music-at-oran-park ORAN PARK, SYDNEY, 21 March 2017 - The Australian Foundation for Disability (Afford) Lifestyle Centre in Oran Park will be filled with musical celebration, festivities and fun today, as 100 clients from Afford Lifestyle Centres across Sydney come together to celebrate Harmony Day through music and song.   Afford Oran Park Lifestyle Centre will play host to 100 Afford clients from Oran Park, Campbelltown, Green Valley, Lurnea, Chipping Norton, Canley Vale and Condell Park Lifestyle Centres to enjoy live music performances and interactive music play in celebration of cultural diversity and respect on Harmony Day.   Afford clients and staff come from diverse and varied cultural backgrounds, which, according to Afford CEO, Steven Herald, is what helps the not-for-profit identify and understand the needs of clients.   "We are proud of the rich cultures and different family backgrounds that make up our Afford community," Mr Herald explained.   "We celebrate and welcome the different cultural traditions of our clients every day across all of our Lifestyle Centres, but it is particularly special to come together in one location at Oran Park to celebrate everyone's unique backgrounds on Harmony Day."   Musical activities will be facilitated by professional musicians from The Rhythm Village and incorporate live music performances and interactive singing, dancing, and playing of musical instruments such as guitar and percussion instruments. All activities are tailored to suit the different abilities and talents of Afford clients.   All participants will be supported to participate with hitting of drums, shaking of maracas, and dancing along to the beat of the music just some of the main activities for today.   Celebrating diversity is incorporated into many activities across Afford Lifestyle Centres, with some Lifestyle Centres working with clients to choose a country of interest each month. During the month, Afford staff and clients research the chosen country's culture, language, cuisines and traditions. Traditional delicacies are made during cooking programs and art and craft activities can centre on the chosen country's culture.   "Afford has been trusted for 65 years to offer person-centred care and support for people with disability. Our dedicated staff are constantly looking for ways to customise programs to the interests of clients and embrace diversity," Mr Herald commented.   AFFORD is a registered charity and has been operating in NSW for 65 years, providing a range of disability services to over 2,000 people with disability every day in Greater Western Sydney.   For more information about Afford, visit or call 1300 233 673.   ENDS   Media Contact: Maria Crema: Crema PR m 0402 239 929 e   More about the Australian Foundation for Disability (AFFORD) - The Australian Foundation for Disability (AFFORD) is a registered charity engaged in providing disability services to over 2,000 people in Greater Western Sydney. The services provided by AFFORD include: Accommodation; Respite; Community Participation Programs; Transition to Work Programs; Transition to Retirement Program; Carer Support; Disability Employment Services; and Supported Employment.   Managing Mental Health at Work - Your Legal Responsibilities 2017-03-14T07:50:54Z managing-mental-health-at-work-your-legal-responsibilities The majority of employees with mental health problems, successfully manage their illness without it impacting on their work and it is important to remember that people affected by mental illness have the same rights and responsibilities, as other employees.   A stressful work environment or a workplace incident, can however cause considerable anxiety and aggravate or contribute to the manifestation of mental illness.  Employers and managers are obliged to take appropriate steps to eliminate and minimise health and safety risks in the workplace. In terms of mental illness, as an employer or manager you are compelled to: ·       identify workplace practices, actions or incidents which may cause or contribute to the mental illness ·       take actions to eliminate or minimise these risks. The legal obligations of employers in relation to the management of mental illness in the workplace are as follows: 1.       Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) legislation requires you to ensure your workplace is safe and healthy for all employees and does not cause ill health or aggravate existing conditions. It is important to objectively assess the actual OHS risk of a worker with mental illness. Proceed as one would with any Risk Assessment: a.       determine the degree of risk and take steps to minimise or prevent it b.       take action to eliminate or manage the risk as appropriate. 2.       Discrimination in the workplace against someone with a mental illness (or other disability) is unlawful under the Disability Discrimination Act 1992. You are also required to make reasonable adjustments in the workplace, to meet the needs of workers with mental illness. 3.       The Privacy Act 1988, requires you to ensure personal information about a worker’s mental health status is not disclosed to anyone without the affected employees’ consent. The only exceptions may be: a.       use of the information is necessary to prevent or lessen a serious and imminent threat to the life or health of the individual concerned or another person, or b.       use of the information is required or authorised by law. You are obliged to eliminate, isolate or lessen health and safety risks, while taking care to ensure the privacy of employees is upheld.  Under the Fair Work Act 2009, it is essential to ensure that unfavourable action is not taken against a worker because of their mental illness. An adverse action can include dismissal, injuring the employee, altering the position of the employee to the employees’ disadvantage, refusing to employ a prospective employee or discriminating against an employee with mental illness. While employers have several legal obligations, they do have the right to ask certain questions about an employee or potential employee’s mental health status, if obtaining more information about a condition is legitimate, necessary and desirable. This additional information may be: ·       to determine whether the person can perform the inherent requirements of the job ·       to identify if any reasonable adjustments may be needed, either in the selection and recruitment process or in the work environment ·       to establish facts for entitlements such as sick leave, superannuation, workers’ compensation and other insurance. ·       If you do ask your employee for information, you must maintain confidentiality and protect his or her right to privacy. This means protecting the information against improper access and disclosure. In turn, all employees (including those with mental illness) are legally obliged to: ·       take reasonable care for their own health and safety ·       take reasonable care that their acts and omissions do not adversely affect the health or safety of others ·       cooperate with any reasonable instructions to ensure workplace health and safety. Clarification The law defines discrimination to include both direct and indirect discrimination. It is important to note that a failure to make reasonable adjustments for a worker with disability, including a worker with mental illness, may constitute direct or indirect discrimination. Direct discrimination occurs in employment where: a worker is treated less favourably by an employer than someone without disability. For example, refusing to employ or dismissing someone because they have a mental illness. or not allowing someone with depression to work part-time where this arrangement has been sought as an adjustment for the worker’s mental illness, may be direct discrimination. Indirect discrimination occurs in employment where: an employer sets a requirement or condition that applies generally, but an employee cannot comply with it because of their disability or they are disadvantaged. For example, it may be indirect discrimination to require a worker with mental illness to start work at 7am, when the effect of their medication means they are not alert in the early morning. or It may be indirect discrimination to expect that employees must work an 8 hour shift, but not allow a worker with mental illness to take additional breaks where required, to be able to complete their shift. Reasonable adjustments are changes which can be made to a job, to enable a worker to perform their duties more effectively in the workplace. They should be in response to the particular needs or issues of a worker and can include: ·       offering flexible working arrangements (e.g. job rotation, variable start and finish times) ·       changing some aspects of the job or work tasks (e.g. breaking down a large, demanding project into a number of smaller tasks) ·       changing the workplace or work area (e.g. moving a worker to a quieter work area) ·       purchasing or modifying equipment. An adjustment will be a ‘reasonable adjustment’ unless it would cause an employer an ‘unjustifiable hardship’ to make the adjustment. Harassment is defined as an action taken in relation to a person’s disability that is likely to humiliate, offend, intimidate or distress the person.  The behaviour does not have to be repeated or ongoing to be harassment. Inherent requirements of a job are those requirements, tasks or skills that are essential to the position. It is not unlawful discrimination to terminate a worker’s employment where they cannot perform the inherent requirements of the job after reasonable adjustments have been made. However the employer may still have legal obligations under the contract of employment, award or agreement or other laws. In consultation with experts and clients, myosh have developed the Wellbeing platform to Manage Workplace Mental Health. Our cloud based solution provides managers and employees with resources and strategies to: ·      Reduce Risk ·      Improve Productivity ·      Promote a positive working environment ·      Raise awareness and reduce stigma Join a webinar to learn more about Mental Health Management at Work and the Wellbeing Platform. References Australian Human Rights Commission DNA Sampling for the dead 2017-03-12T22:54:04Z dna-sampling-for-the-dead A leading Sydney based funeral company has recently introduced for the first time in Australia, DNA sampling for the dead. The idea started, when stories emerged about family history of medical conditions, namely generations dying of the same disease. The spokesperson for the funeral company says: " never before has there been a better opportunity to collect this information, especially for families who have a history of complaints or diseases. We believe we can help people to better understand this, by taking a sample of the body before burial or cremation". The simple practice of a funeral has changed over the years,  creating  more options for families at their time of need can only be a benefit to society. A simple idea that could raise millions of dollars for Not for Profits 2017-03-07T05:33:19Z a-simple-idea-that-could-raise-millions-of-dollars-for-not-for-profits-2 A new innovative concept has the potential of raising millions of dollars for Not for Profits (NFPs) while saving money for the community. The idea is simple. Switch energy providers with Energy Pledge, save money on your energy bills and earn a $40 donation for your cause of choice. This donation comes from the commission earned as a result of switching providers.   The idea originated from Lee White, Founder of social enterprise Energy Pledge. With an extensive career in energy, Lee and some energy executives calculated that over $300 million was being spent by the energy industry on sales and marketing commissions. As large as that sounds, I’m sure a number of us can relate to that with the increasing number of calls that are received from energy providers. That prompted Lee asking the question “What if 1% of this $300 million went to worthy causes?” That 1%, or $3 million would make a considerable difference.   This led to the birth of Energy Pledge, an innovative social venture based in Victoria, Australia. Energy Pledge supports Not for Profits such as The Tipping Foundation, Starlight Children’s Foundation and Sands Australia who work with this model as an alternative to their existing fundraising efforts.   “We recognized that not all people could support charities by donating money. We also understood that energy prices in Australia were increasing and people who weren’t actively looking for a cheaper deal would likely be paying more than they should be. So we created our service to address these problems. We have saved over 80% of the bills we reviewed and we are confident that we can help many more people to save. If they switch with Energy Pledge to one of our partner retailers, they get the added benefit of supporting a cause they care about with a free donation so everyone wins.” Says Energy Pledge Founder - Lee White.   This announcement comes shortly after energy prices have increased in Australia as a result of rising electricity wholesale prices. In addition, research shows that people in Victoria have switched energy providers an average of 2 times in the last 5 years. It’s people that are haven't switched for a while that are likely to paying more for their energy than they should be. In fact Energy Pledge has saved some households over $1,300 a year because they haven’t switched for some time.   A lot of people think that it’s difficult to switch, however with the installation of smart meters in most residences makes the process extremely easy. Simply provide your details, and consent that you are happy to switch and Energy Pledge works with the providers do the rest. Plus each person that switches with Energy Pledge can choose a charity to donate the $40 to.   These free $40 donations, complement NFP’s existing fundraising efforts, while also rewarding their supporters and organisation with savings and often a reduction in their carbon footprint depending on the retailer they move to.   The most recent initiative funded by Energy Pledge’s model was for The Tipping Foundation, a Not for Profiit that supports people with disability. Their goal of raising $1,500 was successfully achieved in less than 2 months as a result of less than 40 people switching to a better deal with Energy Pledge.   The funds raised went to buy two lawn mowers and garden trimming equipment that The Tipping Point’s volunteering centre in Morwell uses to maintain their gardens. Previously, they were contracting out this work, however with the purchase of the equipment, the centre will save $3,500 annually. Furthermore, this will enable a group of people with intellectual disabilities to participate in helping their community while growing in confidence and independence.   “We have been working towards raising funds for this initiative for a while, however Energy Pledge’s approach helped us to fund this requirement quickly and with little effort. We were very happy with this result and look forward to working with Energy Pledge on the next initiative” Commented Michael Smitheram, Senior Fundraising Manager, The Tipping Foundation   “We were excited to work with The Tipping Foundation to fund this great project. It was extremely special spending the day with an amazing group of individuals that benefitted from the purchase of the gardening equipment. We appreciate the support of The Tipping Foundation and we hope this is the start of many more successful pledges to come.” Adds Dinesh Arasaratnam, Managing Director of Energy Pledge.   To see the outcome of the day, Energy Pledge worked with The Tipping Foundation to put together a video which you can view here.   Energy Pledge’s approach referred to as “No-Cost Fundraising” is a term that is growing within the industry as new, creative ways exist to assist charities in reaching their fundraising targets. However, approaches used to raise funds usually involve people spending money or time in some way. Energy Pledge is unique in that it enables people to give back to the community by saving money.   About Energy Pledge   Energy Pledge is a social enterprise that empowers people to fund community and Not for Profit projects while saving money on their energy bills. They exist to raise funds for the community using an energy brokerage model where they share an earned commission with respective not for Profit partners.   Energy Pledge was founded by 4 seasoned executives experienced in energy, marketing and technology. They started the social enterprise with goal of applying the skills they have learned over their career to give back to the community.  Exclusive Valentine’s Day Party Decoration Supplies Within Budget 2017-02-08T08:31:45Z exclusive-valentine-s-day-party-decoration-supplies-within-budget Valentine’s day is around the corner and it’s time for Valentine’s Day party decorations. A lot of people would be excited for the one of the special days in their life making the most of it in every possible way. They would have amazing ideas that connect heart-to-heart and there is no way they are getting away from the best Valentine’s Day party decoration supplies.  Well, there are many reliable online stores that have been catering to various needs for decoration supplies at competitive prices for the Valentine’s Day of all those individuals that begin planning for their amazing party a week before. One such online store is Little Parties.  They have always taken sheer pleasure in hosting parties which inspired them to start their very own party business. Specializing in a wide range of balloons, tableware as well as decoration items, they ensure that they make one’s party not only affordable but a memorable affair to remember.   In fact, they are always on the lookout for the new and crisp designs and products ensuring only the highest quality decoration supplies and collections are sold that too within one’s budget. In simple words, they are all about customers.  One can pick the rose red color in everything they desire to make their Valentine’s Day party celebration a grand success. These appealing red things are enough to melt the heart of a loved one making him or her feel special and out of the world. The mood can amazingly be set with all captivating arrangements.  Company Profile:  Little Parties is a reliable online store based in Melbourne, Australia that has been serving customers with the highest quality of decoration supplies for a child’s Birthday Party and Valentine Day’s party.   They specialize in a wide variety of balloons, tableware and other decorations items that make any party cost-effective to every customer whether organizing a big or small party. They make every party a memorable affair so it can be cherished for long.For more details about Valentine's Day party decoration ideas, you may wish to visit here Surprise winner for NDIS Provider of the Year 2017-02-08T00:45:20Z surprise-winner-for-ndis-provider-of-the-year The People Have VotedThe National Disability Insurance Scheme has its first Provider of the Year, with 2016 marking the first year of the program's rollout. Chosen based on votes by NDIS participants, carers and care professionals from across the country, the honour was awarded by The website is a digital community that helps people share advice about the best NDIS providers in their area all across Australia, similar to TripAdvisor or Yelp for disability services. First launching at the end of January 2016, has seen an explosion in popularity in the last 12 months with over 25,000 people using the site as they grapple with the new NDIS system. After tallying the votes and reviewing advice offered by NDIS participants, carers and care professionals, has announced Abacus Learning Centre as the inaugural NDIS provider of the Year. Abacus Learning Centre provides Applied Behavioural Analysis (ABA) programs which are individually designed to suit the needs of the child and their family. Based in Hastings, Victoria, Abacus is a Not-for-Profit organisation offering 1:1 individualised programs. This focus on a high quality service tailored to the individual needs of each student, along with a strong community has seen strong support for Abacus Learning Centre which pushed them over the line and made their service the clear winner for NDIS provider of the year. Lauren and the team at Abacus Learning Centre were delighted to receive this award, saying “The Board of Directors and staff of Abacus Learning Centre are very proud to be chosen as CareNavigator NDIS provider of the year for 2016. We would like to thank our wonderful clients who have provided such positive feedback on the CareNavigator website. We are extremely proud of the quality of services that we offer and the care and commitment of our staff to the best outcomes for our clients. CareNavigator is an excellent initiative which will be of great benefit to those families looking to access services under the NDIS.”  As a small provider in the Mornington Peninsula, the win by Abacus Learning Centre on the national stage may come as a surprise to some. With the major market reforms that are putting disability service providers in competition, there has been a growing push from larger providers to sign up NDIS participants and dominate smaller services who don't have the size to offer a 'one-stop shop'. However the win by Abacus shows that NDIS participants value quality services and will seek them out and celebrate them. This win for Abacus has also raised some eyebrows because Abacus Learning Centre withdrew its registration with the National Disability Insurance Agency at the end of 2016. As a non-registered NDIS provider, Abacus continues to offer services to NDIS participants who are either self managed or use a plan manager. NDIS participants that chose to self manage or have a plan manager are free to use their funding with their choice of providers including those who are not registered with the NDIA. Requesting a plan manager allows NDIS participants to gain additional funding for this support and does not reduce funds to their overall plan, making it a strong alternative for those who don't wish to self manage, but do wish to access great providers who aren't registered with the NDIA. Major faults with the NDIA's rollout of the NDIS, including a complete collapse of its payment system have put many participants and providers in a difficult situation as they seek to navigate the new scheme. This and other challenges ultimately lead to major changes to the NDIA's board members at the beginning of 2017, including the removal of former NDIA chairperson Bruce Bonyhady. As the NDIS continues to expand to more areas in 2017 under new leadership, we will see more participants join the scheme and more providers innovating solutions to provide them with the supports that meet their unique needs. While there will always be a place for the one-stop shops, it is inspiring to see niche local providers holding their own and being recognised for the amazing support they provide for people in their community. More on NDIS Provider of the Year Award here 🥇  Abacus Learning Centre Delighted to Receive NDIS Provider of the Year Award 🏆  Support service expansion ready to deliver real benefits for northern Adelaide families 2017-01-24T02:08:56Z support-service-expansion-ready-to-deliver-real-benefits-for-northern-adelaide-families Families living across Adelaide’s northern suburbs are set to be the big winners following news that Inclusive Directions has given the green light to establish a hub at Salisbury to deliver its successful range of quality programs for children with additional needs. Inclusive Directions Chief Executive Officer, Ms Jocelyn Graham, said the exciting decision to open the Commercial Road office was in response to growing demand from northern suburbs’ families wanting access to programs developed from the latest disability and development education research. “The Salisbury expansion is a logical next step for Inclusive Directions and is a significant milestone in our growth journey. Since opening a similar hub on Daws Road at St Marys in 2015 we have been continually approached by northern-based parents wanting local access to one of the few evidence-based early intervention programs in South Australia for their child,” Ms Graham said. “While we already support several families from as far away as Gawler and beyond, we know that such a long drive can be disruptive and challenging for parents and children alike, so offering a hub at Salisbury means that children get the critical development support they need to thrive without the added transport trauma on families,” she said. “We offer an extensive range of programs and support services from Salisbury, including our highly-successful Early Intervention Program, which has already assisted hundreds of South Australian children across the metropolitan Adelaide and regional areas with Autism Spectrum Disorder.” In addition, the Park Terrace facility will also be home to a newly-created clinical services team, which brings together some of South Australia’s leading specialists in childhood development, assessment and treatment of autism spectrum disorders, learning difficulties, social, emotional and behavioural issues.  “The Inclusive Directions Clinical Service operates under the guidance of Clinical Director and Speech Pathologist, Tanya O’Neil, who is joined by some of South Australia’s leading Clinical Psychologists,” Ms Graham said. “The team can draw on their extensive knowledge to share the skills needed to manage challenging events and emotions so that children are not overwhelmed and can lead a meaningful life. They work with families to help them understand the young person and help with their emotional, behavioural and skill development,” she said.  The announcement is welcome news for Athelstone mother Louisa Calabria, whose 3½ year old son Oliver attends the Salisbury hub for ABA and early intervention therapy twice weekly as well as an additional session at home. “After he was diagnosed as being on the ASD spectrum, Oliver did a two-week intensive therapy and it was like something inside of him woke up. We have seen him finally start to say words, learn and develop as part of the Inclusive Directions program,” Louisa said. “We continue to see improvements in Oliver. He now sits at the table to learn colours, numbers, use building blocks and a range of other teaching tools – which we then reinforce at home,” she said. “We have a window in which we can ensure that Oscar gets early intervention support through ABA, and having the convenience of taking him to Salisbury really lessens the impact on the family and lets me do the school run for my other two boys and still help run the family business.”  Ms Graham reinforced the need for a child living with autism to access enhanced professional early intervention support as soon as possible to assist their development.  “Seeing a family unit work more effectively together, watching a child grow and thrive, empowering parents with the skills needed to improve everyone’s quality of life – they are some of the outcomes that makes what we do so very special,” she says. “We are proud to have been part of the South Australian community for more than 30 years, and as demand grows we will continue to grow with it. Over time we can create additional local employment opportunities in response – so this is a win; win for local families and the local economy.” More about Inclusive Directions can be found at About Inclusive Directions Inclusive Directions is a not-for-profit, independent organisation with a long history of promoting and supporting children’s inclusion across a range of settings including education, care and community. The organisation provides individual assistance to children, coaching for staff, and support to families to build their skills and networks. It advocates for and support, strong communities through programs, services and training. Show Your Love this Valentine’s Day with Exclusive Little Parties Supplies 2017-01-21T07:08:02Z show-your-love-this-valentine-s-day-with-exclusive-little-parties-supplies Love is in the Air!!! Make Your Valentine’s Day more special and beautiful this year by decorating your home with amazing little parties’ supplies that definitely set the scene for heartfelt celebrations…  If you planning a small Valentine's Day dinner for someone extra special then look no further - Little Parties, an Australia-based company is here to provide all Valentine's Day party supplies and to create the right mood for romance, affection, and love. Show your appreciation for all the Valentines in your life by simply creating a perfect ambiance in your home. Little Parties offers you an exclusive and inexpensive range of theme supplies that let you surprise your sweetheart this Valentine’s Day.   Choose from a hearty collection of happy Valentine's themes for an easy Valentine's Day party or mix and match their Valentine’s Day supplies with the red striped, dotted, square, chevron, scalloped plates and napkins. In addition to this, with red tableware, set a sweet scene as your valentine will be seeing hearts everywhere. Spread the love and cheer to your valentine by adding exclusive red heart shape balloons in a room.   Further for an ultimate statement, go all out with the decor, hanging valentines decorations for the ceilings and door frames, table decorations, designer red and white glasses. Get into the character to delight your loved one and make them feel so special with all this amazing theme party.  Company Profile: An Australia-based company “Little Parties” serves you unique range of party supplies and decoration ideas. Create a swooningly sweet display with the themed collection of paper plates, napkins, cups, server and party accessories featuring classic red hearts on a white background this Valentine’s Day and shower your love.For more details about Valentines Day Supplies, you may wish to visit 2 Australians committed to supporting people with addictions, co-dependency and grief 2017-01-20T15:16:05Z 2-australians-committed-to-supporting-people-with-addictions-co-dependency-and-grief Roslyn Saunders and Pat Armitstead have convened an Addiction Conference in Auckland NZ on March the 18th Roslyn is a co-dependence recovery coach who has first hand experience of dealing with addiction, in herself, her children, and her family. Having faced the legacy of her primary family’s debilitating addictions, Roslyn was then challenged with the drug and alcohol addictions which emerged in her now adult children.Roslyn now feels deeply grateful for this experience, which afforded her the insights and wisdom to address co-dependent behaviour in herself. As a result of this lifetime’s experience, Roslyn has developed a thorough ‘daily deliberate action plan’ and with a program and network of support, she has navigated the tricky road to recovery. With the benefit of a lifetime’s experience, she is now inspiring greatness in others, navigating a pathway to recovery. Having faced and survived her own personal challenges, Roslyn can speak and act with integrity.  She has been where you are….. “in the trenches”. Roslyn works with her clients to provide practical strategies that both support and challenge them, as they navigate a sustainable pathway to recovery from co-dependence. Pat Armitstead is no stranger to grief and loss. She says “My lifes work has been a series of devotional appointments with my higher self. Like Stephen Jenkinson I have come to see grief is a skill of deep living, which enables us to recognise our own and the worlds suffering. It is also the midwife for being able to fall in love with being alive again.” We are a culture that has become addicted to security, comfort and being all you can be. Along that path though we have become grief illiterate.  Sadness is love announced and we have created the idea that grief is containable. Across the globe the emotional energy of the world is flatlining. Most people have all they need to be happy and fulfilled, but rarely capture the excitement, the engagement or the levels of self expression they deserve to have. Pat sees crisis as a catalyst for personal growth and ongoing transformation, enabling high levels of intimate authentic expression. In this presentation Pat will share her own philosophies on enabling the expression of grief and introduce the audience to mBraining and Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, showing how we can use these to have a rich and meaningful life even in the face of adversity. Unlike most addiction conferences, this one is designed for families and friends of addicts, along with health professionals and counsellors working with addicts and their families. The focus is on reclaiming your health and happiness; resolving grief; understanding Co-dependency and the part that plays in perpetuating addiction; the role that “inherited” trauma may play in our struggles; and how to live as the best version of yourself, while loving an addict. Mumsomnia: New Facebook group for Mums that encourages face to face connections 2017-01-10T04:31:26Z mumsomnia-new-facebook-group-for-mums-that-encourages-face-to-face-connections Emma Lovell is a Sydney Mum of two. The public know her from Shark Tank where she won over one of the sharks with her innovative sleep, sun and travel product CoziGo (formerly known as Fly Babee). She has also won various awards such as the AusMumpreneur Emerging Business for 2016 and the Optus My Business Award for Wholesaler of 2016. Emma set up Mumsomnia to provide a judgement free zone for Mums. This social media group encourages mothers to meet up face to face. Emma Lovell states: "For me, being a new mum was the most vulnerable I’ve ever been and I think there are so many women out there that need support outside of their immediate family and friends. I set up Mumsomnia to provide a judgement free space for women to connect and make a plan to meet up face to face. Social Media is making us all anti-social and we all spend far too much time attached to our phones." We’re hoping 2017 will see Mumsomnia connect more mums face to face and forge some lifelong memories and friendships. All we ask, is if you have nothing nice to say when in this space, don’t say anything at all! Emma adds: "You don’t have to be a “billy no mates” to come and join Mumsomnia, you may feel disconnected from your current friends at this new stage of your life, have moved to a new area or just fancy meeting a fresh face and make a new connection. Once there, in order to make it happen, you must make the effort to give a shout out to other members and make time for a coffee date with the kids or throw caution to the wind and make a plan to have a kid free dinner with a cocktail or two!!" *** Media Contact: Candice Meisels SCCU announces winners of $5000 Community Grants 2017-01-06T04:51:23Z sccu-announces-winners-of-5000-community-grants As part of their 50 year celebrations, Southern Cross Credit Union offered local community organisations the opportunity to apply for one of three $5,000 Community Grants. Winners were decided based on community votes and specific judging criteria. CEO Stuart Edwards was overwhelmed by the tremendous response.   “We received 52 applications from community groups and events throughout our region, attracting thousands of votes in branch and online. It was an extremely difficult task to select our three recipients as all applicants undertake extremely important work in our community. “   The recipients of the community grants are Liberation Larder for their Byron Festival Food Waste Project, Community Owned Renewable Energy Mullumbimby (COREM) to install solar panels on the Brunswick Valley Rescue building and Big Scrub Orchestra a dynamic creative arts education program for students at Dunoon and Whian Whian Public Schools.   Byron Youth Theatre and Murwillumbah Cricket Club will also receive $500 each in recognition of their excellent submissions.   Support of the local community is an important function of customer owned institutions like Southern Cross Credit Union explained Mr Edwards.   “As a customer owned financial institution, it is important to us to make meaningful contribution to our local community. The Community Grants program was run in addition to our Community Partnership sponsorship program to say thank you to our community for their support over the past 50 years.” Finally, a solution for January birthdays! No more receiving re-gifted Xmas gifts! 2017-01-05T04:01:54Z finally-a-solution-for-january-birthdays-no-more-receiving-re-gifted-xmas-gifts Over the last ten days, bins around Australia have been full to capacity with rubbish, packaging, gift tags and wrapping paper. Sydney Mums, Julie Tylman and Ali Linz, created Group Together to avoid waste from unwanted gifts, packaging and wrapping paper. Julie Tylman, co-founder of GroupTogether, explains: “Ali and I have seven children combined. We met for coffee one day after a weekend of ferrying kids to and from birthday parties. We were exhausted from the driving, parking, buying, wrapping gifts, drop offs and pick-ups involved in attending kid’s parties. We were also gob-smacked at the amount of money we had spent (7 kids’ x 2 parties’ x $20ish gifts + wrapping & card) only to find out that the birthday kids either already had the gifts, were given multiple copies of the gifts or didn’t love them.” They created GroupTogether, an easy online tool that makes it easy to pool funds to give one gift that’s really wanted without the waste. Friends can also add a photo and message to the group card. For those who want to “give back”, there’s the option to donate a portion of the gift pool to your favourite charity. The business has grown and now has 20 000 users who have organized group gift collections through GroupTogether. One of the most popular types of collections at the end of 2016, was end of year teacher’s gifts. Ali Linz, co-founder GroupTogether, continues: “As well as cutting out the waste, we also felt that there was an opportunity to create a culture of mindful giving. That’s why we made it easy to donate a bit of the group gift to charity so kids can learn the joy of giving back.” Julie Tylman, co-founder, GroupTogether concludes: “I really feel for the January babies, they struggle. No need to give the sad, re-gifted Chrissie present, instead friends can keep their new year's resolution and stay on budget by pooling their money together and giving one great gift.” Media Contact: Candice Meisels Group Homes Australia and Heathley celebrate business growth by donating to Orange Sky Laundry 2017-01-05T02:01:16Z group-homes-australia-and-heathley-celebrate-business-growth-by-donating-to-orange-sky-laundry Sydney, Australia, 5th January 2017, Group Homes Australia, who offers a unique model of dementia care in a luxurious, friendly and safe, home environment, celebrates a successful 2016 by giving back to the community. Group Homes Australia and Heathley have donated to the innovative charity, Orange Sky Laundry. Group Homes Australia and Heathley recently entered into a property partnership. The partnership, which is designed to drive future growth, has Heathley agreeing to fund the purchase and development of Group Homes Australia (GHA) residences through its existing Heathley Aged Care Property Fund No.1 (Fund). GHA and Heathley have chosen to support Orange Sky Laundry because they are keen to support a charity that works with the homeless. The teams at GHA and Heathley love the Orange Sky Laundry concept. Jonathan Gavshon, General Manager at GHA says: “At GHA we are able to offer people living with dementia a beautiful home environment, with round the clock, best in class care. As the business grows and more people are able to benefit from living in a Group Home Australia environment, we wanted to acknowledge people living without a home. We are enormously impressed by the innovation, vision and revolutionary care that Orange Sky Laundry offers and are delighted to be able to demonstrate our support with a monetary donation to ensure they can continue the amazing work that they are doing.” Lucas Patchett, Co-founder of Orange Sky Laundry says: “Orange Sky Laundry believes in treating others how they want to be treated and providing a platform for positive and non-judgmental conversations. Donations such as this allow us to continue operating our 12 vans around Australia, run by more than 700 amazing volunteers who facilitate over 7.2 tonnes of free laundry and 1,200 hours of conversations.” Group Homes Australia and Heathley are passionate about the community and giving back to those who require support. In 2017, Group Homes Australia will run a series of local community events to allow locals to see the homes and engage with the residents and staff at Group Homes Australia. -ENDS- About Group Homes Australia: Group Homes Australia offers a unique model of care in a luxurious, friendly and safe, home environment. Our mission is to ensure that people living with dementia also live with dignity. We have homes located across Sydney, including in Waverley, Rose Bay, Vaucluse, St Ives and Warriewood, and were recently independently benchmarked by Alzheimer's Australia as best in class in every area of dementia care against over 80 competitors. Our model is the first of its kind in Australia and focuses on creating a non-institutional way of living that emphasises a resident’s abilities rather than their disabilities. Our homes are traditional houses in traditional streets and are an integral part of the community, with a maximum of 10 residents living together in private rooms. Each home has trained staff on site 24/7 and approximately 1 member of staff for every 3 residents. Our caring team members are homemakers, and they support and assist residents with their daily needs and activities. They encourage residents to be engaged in shopping, cooking, gardening… The full range of daily tasks that bring a sense of purpose in a home. We have no call bells or nursing trolleys, no rigid routines around waking, personal care or singalongs. We actively welcome friends and family to come and visit and stay for a cup of tea and sample our latest freshly baked treats. or 1300 015 406 About Heathley Limited: Since incorporation in 1977, Heathley has had a proud history of finding, structuring and managing property investment portfolios for wealthy individuals, families, and institutions. The principal operations of Heathley is property funds management - having successfully established 40 property funds throughout its 40-year history. The Board and Management of Heathley Limited have a diverse mix of experience and skills and currently manage nine property funds with total funds under management of approximately $550 million. Website: The Women’s Business School is offering $180,000 in scholarships for women starting a business 2017-01-05T00:12:36Z the-women-s-business-school-is-offering-180-000-in-scholarships-for-women-starting-a-business Melbourne, Australia, 5th January 2016, The Women’s Business School is offering $180,000 in full and matched funding scholarships to deserving women starting a business this year. The Women’s Business School is offering 2 Full Scholarships and 5 Matched Scholarships for each city (Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide, Newcastle, Cairns, Townsville and Perth). The total of $180 000 in scholarships is being broken down into 16 Full Scholarships valued at $5000 each and 40 matched funding scholarships of $2500 each. The Women’s Business School IGNITE program is a 6-month online course designed to give new and aspiring business owners the business acumen, financial literacy, strategies and support they need to create a successful and profitable business. The Women’s Business School co-founder Peace Mitchell states, “We are committed to inspiring women to reach their full potential by connecting them with the support they need and the education and skills required to build and grow a successful business.” “This is the program we wish existed when we were starting out. It contains everything new business owners need to succeed including, a one day workshop in each capital city nationally, monthly group calls, weekly video masterclasses, inspirational interviews, local meetups and an online mastermind group. The teachers and mentors are all accomplished businesswomen from a range of industries.” Two of the most challenging things in life are having a baby and starting a business. Australian women in their thousands are doing just that. Women are starting new businesses at around three times the rate of men. The Women's Business School Scholarship Program provides real support for women in business. This program provides opportunities for women around Australia to be able to develop their business skills, connect with fellow business owners and gain advice and inspiration from business experts.The program contains everything new business owners need to succeed with a one-day workshop in Cairns, Townsville, Brisbane, Newcastle, Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide and Perth, monthly group calls, video masterclasses, inspirational interviews and an online mastermind group. The Women’s Business School is now accepting applications for scholarships and enrolment. The 2017 intake commences in February. For more information go to ### Media Contact: Peace Mitchell Director The Women’s Business School 0431 615 107 About The Women’s Business School: The Women's Business School is a world first Global Business School designed especially for women. The teachers and mentors are successful business women and entrepreneurs, sharing their knowledge and advice. The Women’s Business School IGNITE program is a one-day masterclass followed by a 6-month online course designed to give new and aspiring business owners the business acumen, financial literacy, strategies and support they need to create a successful and profitable business.