Welcome to Open Place
Here you will find information about the services we provide and how Forgotten Australians can access these services.
We are committed to continuing and expanding our outreach capacity in order to better serve isolated Forgotten Australians and isolated communities.
Coronavirus shutdown in Victoria
To ensure we are working with the community to reduce the incidents and impact of COVID19, the Open Place Office & the Drop In Centre closed on Tuesday 24 March 2020.
This decision followed Premier Daniel Andrews most recent restrictions that came into place from midday 23 March until at least April 13. Social distancing is critical and Mr Andrews request that the community stay home except for ‘essential’ travel is one of the key strategies to reducing harm to a large number of people.
Drop In, regular activities, outreach and Social Support groups will not be operating until further notice in response to the need to ensure social distancing, especially given the understanding of the health vulnerabilities that many of you face.
We recognise that for some, this decision will lead to further isolation. This may be for many weeks. Therefore, during this time Open Place staff will be working from home maintaining a telephone and email service.
Please check the website for updates and do not hesitate to phone us on 1800 779 379 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
We are committed to maintaining our connection with you as we all work together to reduce the spread of COVID19.
Stay safe and we look forward to all services resuming as soon as possible.
Find out more about our response to COVID-19.
1 July 2020
Welcoming Open Place to Relationships Australia Victoria
Today, Relationships Australia Victoria (RAV) officially commenced as the new provider of Open Place.
Open Place transition from Berry Street to Relationships Australia Victoria (RAV)
As part of the transition of Open Place to RAV our normal service delivery (during Covid) will be impacted during the week Monday 29th June until Friday 3rd July inclusive.
During this period we cannot guarantee a service response, however Open Place will be ready to be fully operational under Covid restrictions with the same phone number and email address as of Monday July 6th as a service of Relationships Australia Victoria.
We apologise for this inconvenience and look forward to continuing to provide our services with the support of RAV into the future.
We are aware that many of you are also waiting for the 2020-2021 health funding guidelines. We are looking to have these finalised in coming weeks and will put them up on the website and circulate in a newsletter
The Open Place Team
The following 3 letters have been posted to all Forgotten Australians registered with Open Place. These letters were posted on 16 June 2020
Changes to health and special circumstances funding until 30 June 2020 / Planned temporary closure of Open Place
Please find the link to the above letter OPtransitionletter9June
Consent to transfer service user data between Berry Street and Relationships Australia Victoria (RAV) (as the providers of Open Place)
Please find the link to the above letter Open Place – Transfer of information to RAV opt-out for June 2020
Introduction and update from RAV
Please find the link to the above letter RAV – Open Place letter 11062020
DHHS announcement of new service provider
From 1 July 2020 a new provider will operate Open Place, the specialised state-wide support service for people who were in institutional care as children before 1990.
After an open and competitive tender process the Department of Health and Human Services is pleased to announce Relationships Australia Victoria as the new provider of Open Place, commencing 1 July 2020.
Open Place offers support for people apply for, or thinking of applying for, redress through the National Redress Scheme for people who have experienced institutional child sexual abuse.
The National Redress Scheme has been established to support people who were sexually abused as children while in the care of an institution. The establishment of a National Redress Scheme was recommended by the Royal Commission into institutional responses to child sexual abuse. The Scheme commenced on 1 July 2018 and will run for 10 years.
The Redress Scheme can provide three things:
- access to psychological counselling
- a direct personal response – such as an apology from the responsible institution for people who want it
- a monetary payment
A person can choose to apply to the National Redress Scheme if they:
- experienced institutional child sexual abuse before 1 July 2018 and
- are aged over 18 or will turn 18 before 30 June 2028, and
- are applying for redress from an institution that has joined the National Redress Scheme, and
- apply between 1 July and 30 June 2027
If you are interested in finding out any more about this, we have a specialist Redress Scheme support team who will be able to answer your questions and give you accurate, up to date information about the redress process.
Additional information can be found at:
The purpose of this publication launched in November 2016 at the anniversary of the National Apology is to say that Forgotten Australians matter. Their lives and their stories matter. In this publication it is the Forgotten Australians themselves speaking; of hope, recognition and justice, which many still seek as a result of childhood experiences and the struggles in adult life as a consequence of these experiences.
Treasure Trove is a collection of small creative writing pieces that were produced by Forgotten Australians with the support of Open Place.
With just a few well-chosen words – brought alive with the soulful power of visual imagery – these six-word stories, three-line poems, unsent letters, single sentences and other creative writing gems open up a treasure trove of stories and experiences. Some of the pieces of writing sparkle with wisdom, some are filled with humour, and still others intrigue with the uniqueness of their vision. Many provide a glimpse of lives unimaginably altered by traumatic childhood experiences. All demonstrate an astonishing depth of resilience and courage.
We Believe You Booklet
We Believe you is a compilation of the feedback given during the INSIDE Exhibition.
This booklet celebrates the fifth anniversary of the National Apology to Forgotten Australians and Former Child Migrants that was provided by the Honourable Kevin Rudd, former Prime Minister, and supported by the Honourable Malcolm Turnbull, former Opposition Leader, on 16 November 2009.
We Remember You Booklet
We Remember You is a booklet published by Open Place, for Forgotten Australians to celebrate the fifth anniversary of the unveiling of the Memorial to Forgotten Australians on Southbank. The stories contained in this booklet are part of the history of Forgotten Australians; a history that must never be forgotten. These stories tell us about suffering, endurance and resilience. Despite continuing struggles with their past experiences each, in their own way, has made a life with meaning and purpose. If you are a registered service user of Open Place and would like a copy of the booklet, please contact us on 1800 779 379 or email us at email@example.com and we’ll arrange a copy to be forwarded to you.
The we Remember You Booklet is currently being updated and will be available to download at a later date.