The Wellbeing Advocate
Advocacy is provided to current serving members of the ADF and members of the ex-ADF community to ensure their case for support from the Department of Veterans Affairs (DVA) and other government agencies (such as the Defence Force Transition Program) is soundly developed and is genuinely considered when decisions are being made about their lives by these organisations. An advocate is independent of the system to which an application for support is made. The advocate is trained to better understand the demands of the bureaucracy to ensure appropriate resolution is achieved in a timely manner.
There are two types of advocate: Wellbeing and Compensation.
The Wellbeing Advocate
Wellbeing Officers Levels 1 and 2 are trained to assist serving and ex-serving military clients and their dependants to connect with government and community-based services and support including:
Providing information and/or referrals for health, rehabilitation, housing, transport, household assistance, education schemes, and other government or community services and benefits
Providing advice and information about government services for transitioning from the military to civilian life
Providing information and/or referrals for medical, financial, legal and police matters
Providing information and/or referrals for funeral arrangements and bereavement assistance and;
Other wellbeing advice and information as determined in discussion with the client.
At The Oasis Townsville, a Wellbeing Advocate first conducts a quick assessment based on the 10 Human Needs and will then draft a plan to ensure a comprehensive assessment of the symptoms to ensure we address the causes. Each issue is then tackled. One of the issues may be the need for appropriate compensation, and if so tour Wellbeing Advocates will refer that task to address the issue to a Compensation Advocate.
The Compensation Advocate
Compensation Officers Levels 1 to 4 may, according to their level of training, provide advice and assist serving and ex-serving military clients and their dependants with rehabilitation and compensation claims, and represent serving and ex-serving military clients and their dependants before the Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT) or Veterans’ Review Board in relation to compensation and entitlement decisions. Services may include:
Prepare and/or lodge liability, compensation and income support claims
Prepare requests for review of DVA decisions
Prepare appeals for review by the Veterans’ Review Board or the Administrative Appeals Tribunal
Provide representation at hearings by the Veterans’ Review Board and Administrative Appeals Tribunal
A Compensation Advocate will handle the process of dealing with DVA to complete and submit claims for compensation.