COVID-19 Communique No.15

Welcome to the 15th communique regarding Knoxbrooke’s response to COVID-19 Coronavirus.

Knoxbrooke’s COVID-19 Taskforce continues to monitor events locally and globally and considers all new Federal, State and Local Government announcements. The health and safety of the people we support and our team is front of mind when undertaking such reviews.

Knoxbrooke’s COVID-19 Taskforce met today and considered the declaration of a State of Disaster for Victoria by Premier Daniel Andrews and metropolitan Melbourne moving to Stage 4 restrictions and country Victoria being escalated to stage 3 due to increased COVID-19 transmissions.

Whilst naturally disappointing, the COVID-19 Taskforce has been considering such a significant scenario and we are as prepared as can be given these extraordinary times.

Below is a break-down on how the measures will affect Knoxbrooke services.

Knoxbrooke social enterprises are most affected by today’s announcement.

Yarra View Garden Centre

Due to State of Disaster measures and stage 4 restrictions Yarra View Garden Centre will close from 4.30pm Wednesday, 5 August 2020 until further notice.

Yarra View Nursery & Bushland Flora

To continue operations but at reduced capacity due to an expected downturn in demand for plants as a result of retail nurseries and major chain stores closing this Wednesday, and to ensure we manage the safety of all our teams. All supported employees and staff will be advised by the end of this week of reduced hours of employment which will come into effect Monday, 10 August.

Knoxbrooke Outsource

To continue operations but at reduced capacity due to limited business activities. Only firewood and confectionary manufacture will be operating. All supported employees and staff will be advised by the end of this week of reduced hours of employment which will come into effect Monday, 10 August.

Yarra View Horticulture

Available information is unclear on how the State of Disaster affects Yarra View Horticulture. When further information is received, Knoxbrooke will respond appropriately.

Should you wish to discuss the above, please contact Scott Buckland, Executive General Manager on 0408 256 992 or


The Basecamps remain closed until further notice and we would encourage all participants to explore the Zoom sessions which have been well received and are a wonderful way of staying connected.

Should you wish to discuss Zoom support, please contact Gai Campbell, Outer East Regional Manager on 0419 534 094 or email

365 in-home support

In-home support for many participants and families has been an essential support through this crisis and will continue to be offered across all service areas. The practice of contacting participants and carers prior to team members arriving to confirm neither the participants, family or team member have any COVID-19 symptoms will continue. Furthermore, for your safety all team members have undertaken COVID-19 training, are issued with PPE and are required to hand sanitise, wear a face mask and adhere to social distancing wherever possible.

A significant change as a result of the announcements is 365 team members will now be limited to working exclusively with no more than 3 participants.

Should you wish to discuss 365 support, please contact Paul McDonald, 365 Services Coordinator on 0499 501 008 or email


The Achieve and Achieve Boutique services continues to be offered through the remote learning, Zoom platform.

Mawarra Day Service and 365

Mawarra Day Services re-commenced today. It has been wonderful seeing many people returning to Mawarra. Substantial effort was undertaken by team members to ensure that adherence to COVID-19 precautions are in place. As we know, stage 3 will come into effect on Wednesday, 5 August and in reviewing Department of Health and Human Services guidelines for stage 3, day services can continue to operate provided COVID-19 protocols are met. Any adjustments required to continue provide this valuable service will be made prior to Wednesday.

If you have recently returned to Mawarra day services and wish to suspend your attendance due to stage 3, please advise the Mawarra team. Alternatively, you may wish to consider using the Mawarra in-home 365 service which is an excellent alternative.

Should you have any questions regarding Mawarra services, please contact Claire Cutler, West Gippsland Regional Manager on 0499 600 666 or email

Jigsaw Industries and Waratah Gardening

Both social enterprises will continue under stage 3 with appropriate COVID-19 modifications being made including temperature checking on arrival, mandatory face masks, regular hand sanitising, regular wipe down of high touch points and recording of daily attendance.

Mawarra Op Shop

Both Op Shops will continue to remain open under stage 3 with appropriate retail COVID-19 measures in place.

Ringwood and Warragul Hubs

The Ringwood Hub remains closed until further notice.

The Warragul Hub is open on reduced hours. Should you need to attend in person, please consider if necessary and call ahead to arrange an appointment.

Should you need to contact Knoxbrooke, please call the main line (9758-3666) and a team member working remotely will answer your call and direct as appropriate.

COVID-19 safety measures

Given the surging numbers of COVID-19 cases, please be sure to follow the DHHS advice below:

  • Stay at home and get tested if you have symptoms of COVID-19, however mild
  • Practise good hygiene, wash your hands and cough or sneeze into a tissue or your elbow
  • Observe social distancing by maintaining at least 1.5m from anyone you don’t live with
  • Wear a face covering when you leave home

(Please refer to for further information)

If a participant or team member does have symptoms and gets tested for COVID-19 and is awaiting a result, please remember to advise Knoxbrooke via email ( or call/SMS the Knoxbrooke COVID-19 hotline 0475 500 550.

Please re-contact Knoxbrooke once you have a result, positive or negative. For everyone’s safety, it is critical that you regularly communicate any cases of suspected or actual COVID-19.

To date, Knoxbrooke has not have a positive COVID-19 case and the COVID-19 taskforce is well-prepared to respond should this occur.

Thank you for your continued support.

Kristian Dauncey

Chief Executive Officer