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Emergency Material & Financial Aid

The Emergency Material & Financial Aid (EMFA) Program is managed by the Family Supports Services Team Leader, Heli McKellar. The service aims to provide short-term emergency financial and material aid to families and individuals who are in crisis or may be experiencing difficulties.

We provide walk-in assistance to individuals and families to help manage immediate issues, and if further support is needed, a referral is made to case – coordination. The team can provide emergency food hampers via reception to individuals if case – coordination is not required. The program also organises social inclusion activities to increase individual and community wellbeing such as the Good Morning Breakfast, Welcome Café and Body Mind and Soul (BMS) mindfulness classes.

All of the below issues may be encountered and discussed during case – coordination sessions; however, we would refer to other services for assistance.

  • Housing affordability and availability
  • Unemployment, education and training
  • Domestic and family violence
  • Parenting/family difficulties
  • Medical conditions, mental illness or disabilities
  • Centrelink problems
  • Debt and budgeting problems
  • Legal problems
  • Issues with substance use and/or problem gambling

We assist directly with:

  • Food hampers
  • Medication costs (limits apply)
  • Clothing – when available
  • Food vouchers – when available 
  • Other costs pending on program resources and EMFA worker’s assessment

Lisa regularly attends UnitingCare Kippax to receive Emergency, Material and Financial Aid (EMFA) assistance from the EMFA program. Lisa has suffered from mental health, domestic violence and substance issues. Lisa seeks EMFA assistance by requesting and receiving Emergency food hampers, other material items such a hygiene items, food vouchers, brokerage assistance and from time to time may request a specific item such a “Moccona Coffee” Lisa quite enjoys. Lisa regularly pops into the centre to get a loaf of bread and may get a coat of the coat rack in the foyer while she is in the area.

Lisa has recently accessed additional programs run by EMFA staff such as the Good morning breakfast program and Welcome Cafe. One morning Lisa was so keen to have a hot breakfast Lisa arrived 30min early and when staff arrived Lisa was sitting out the front in the freezing cold. Staff invited Lisa inside and made a hot cup of coffee while breakfast was being prepared. Lisa enjoyed her breakfast and coffee and even had a second serve. While at the breakfast Lisa has mentioned how coming to the breakfast gives her something to do on a Thursday morning. Lisa enjoys a chat with other Good morning breakfast participants and staff increasing her social interactions for the day.