‘Difficult topic’ up for discussion in Traralgon

END of life support and genuine choice are up for discussion at a community forum to be held in Traralgon on Tuesday.

Latrobe Valley residents are encouraged to participate in the consultation session, which will contribute towards a new state-wide end of life framework aimed at improving support services during the difficult time.

Figures from the Department of Health and Human Services End of Life Discussion Paper indicated up to 70 per cent of Australians would prefer to die at home, but only 14 per cent do.

Health Minister Jill Hennessy said it was important families and the wider community talked openly and honestly about end of life care so people were aware of their family’s wishes.

“It can be a difficult topic, but it affects us all,” Ms Hennessy said.

“We know that more and more Victorians want to be cared for in the embrace of family and friends in their own home at the end of their lives.

“Victorians deserve the best possible end of life care – care that relieves pain and suffering, and provides empowering support to family, friends and carers.”

The forum will take place on Tuesday from 1.30pm to 4.30pm at the Quality Inn Latrobe Convention Centre, 5601 Princes Highway, Traralgon.

To attend, register at www.betterendoflife.vic.gov.au

The End of Life Framework Discussion Paper is also available on the website or a hard copy can be obtained by phoning 9096 1337.

Big opportunity for small towns

Six small towns with populations fewer than 2000 people will be granted $350,000 each for collaborative projects that leave a lasting legacy of creativity and artistic passion.

“We encourage ambitious thinking and welcome projects incorporating everything from design, performance, game development and film-making to visual arts, music and beyond,” Regional Arts Victoria director Esther Anatolitis said.

“Now is the time to start thinking about how art can transform your town.”

Expressions of interest from towns will opened on Monday and close 29 February 2016.