News & Media Releases

Yarra Senior Ambassadors Program

03 March 2015

Yarra City Council is piloting a new program that aims to increase community participation by older residents from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds.

The Senior Ambassadors Program will see older Greek and Italian speaking volunteers meeting with local community groups and clubs to discuss issues that are important to them, in their own language.

Yarra Mayor, Cr Phillip Vlahogiannis said, "Council’s Senior Ambassadors Program is an innovative way for Council to support older residents from non-English speaking backgrounds.  The program aims to assist in overcoming cultural and language barriers that can cause social isolation.  The ambassadors will be people from within a particular language group who can directly engage with seniors within that group to establish a connection between them and Council.  This is the key feature of this program.”

“The program is designed to build older residents’ resilience and participation in community and neighbourhood life, to prolong independent living and maintain residents’ wellbeing.”

“Through the Senior Ambassadors Program, Council hopes to build the capacity of older residents to utilize Council services and to ensure these services are meeting their needs,” Cr Vlahogiannis said.

The initial 12 month trial will focus on helping older residents from Greek and Italian backgrounds who live in Clifton Hill, North Fitzroy, Cremorne and Burnley/Richmond (south of Swan Street).

Following the trial period, the program will be reviewed and Council will assess the viability of extending the program to other language groups and neighbourhoods in the future.

Become a Senior Ambassador

Council is currently seeking expressions of interest from Yarra residents aged 50 or over to become Senior Ambassadors. Volunteers must have good English language skills and the ability to speak either Greek or Italian.

Volunteers will receive ongoing training from Council to enable them to confidently meet with local groups and clubs to discuss Council services and ways Council can help increase their connectedness and participation within the community.

For more information or to nominate to become a Senior Ambassador, visit the Senior Ambassador Program webpage.

Expressions of Interest are due Thursday 26 March 2015.



Media enquiries:
Jessica Matrakis
Communications Officer
9205 5144 



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