Service changes due to coronavirus

This page was last updated Monday 1 June 2020

Yarra is committed to the health, wellbeing and safety of our community and workforce.

We’re happy to let you know that we’re working towards reopening some of our facilities and services, following the easing of some coronavirus (COVID-19) restrictions by the Victorian Government.

Some facilities and services may resume or reopen before others while we plan how to protect your health and safety. Thank you for your patience and understanding while we work towards providing the best and safest possible service to our community.

You can still get in touch with us via online services, calling 9205 5555emailing us, or reaching out on social media.

View changes to services

Aged and disability services

We continue to deliver essential services for Yarra's older people and people with a disability, with a range of precautions taken to protect our clients' health. 

This includes physical distancing where appropriate, working with clients to tailor services to their needs and following the advice of the Victorian and Federal governments. 

The following services are continuing with modifications to protect our clients and staff:

  • delivered meals services
  • home care, personal care and respite care 
  • home maintenance
  • assessments for care and services.

The following services have been suspended or cancelled:

  • Willowview Seniors’ Centre and exercise / art groups
  • seniors’ social groups 
  • community transport. 

We are continuing to monitor changes in restrictions and will let you know when our services are able to re-open. 

Should a Yarra staff member or client contract COVID-19, we'll be working with other government departments to determine the impact on our services and options for continuing care or alternative arrangements.

Staying in touch 

Maintaining social contact during this time is important, so we're here to assist with:

  • regular telephone calls
  • mail outs, including mail-based art and social activities
  • one-on-one walks around your neighbourhood.

If you would like to take advantage of these services or just have a chat, please call us on 9205 5285.

You can also contact the Older Persons Advocacy Network on 1800 237 981 6am to 10pm (AEDT), 7 days a week or via email to talk about any issues or concerns you have.

Essential shopping assistance

If you need support with shopping, accessing emergency food or any other essential needs, please contact us on 9205 5285.

Annual flu immunisation

All older residents are encouraged to get our annual flu immunisation. If you need assistance attending a GP, pharmacist or one of our immunisations sessions, please call us on 9205 5285. 

Customer service centres

Our customer service centres at Richmond Town Hall, Collingwood Town Hall and the Connie Benn Centre will reopen on Tuesday 9 June 2020 from 8.30am. The customer service centre at Bargoonga Nganjin North Fitzroy Library will open from 10am on Tuesday 9 June 2020.

In the meantime, you can still contact us by:

Libraries

Our five library branches are closed until further notice. All in-person library programs, including Storytime and after school programs, will not run during this time.

The Home Library Service will continue to operate in a limited capacity for existing customers.

Library Express

Yarra Libraries is offering a new Library Express service at Bargoonga Nganjin North Fitzroy Library, Fitzroy Library and Richmond Library from Monday 1 June 2020.

This includes click-and-collect, returns and continued delivery of online library programs.

Keep your items

Remember, we don't charge late fees and are offering indefinite renewals on all items until our branches completely open. 

Feel free to keep your borrowed items at home and use the online library to access our wide range of online resources of e-books, audiobooks and more

Leisure centres

Yarra Leisure’s Richmond Recreation Centre, Fitzroy Swimming Pool, Collingwood Leisure Centre and Collingwood Estate Gym will be reopening gradually over the coming weeks. This will begin with swimming pools, followed by gyms, group exercise classes and all other forms of group training and lessons.

For more information and dates visit Yarra Leisure

Burnley Golf Course

Burnley Golf Course reopened on Friday 15 May 2020 following the easing of some Victorian Government restrictions.

Wellness Locker

To help you remain healthy, connected and balanced, Yarra Leisure has created the Wellness Locker, packed with fitness videos and workout plans, mindfulness tips, snack ideas, mental health resources and more.

Playgrounds and exercise equipment

Our parks and gardens are open to the public. Outdoor playgrounds, skateparks and outdoor communal gym equipment reopened on Tuesday 26 May 2020 following the easing of some Victorian Government restrictions.

Please continue to practice physical distancing and good personal hygiene when using our facilities. 

Tennis, bowls and sporting pavilions 

The Mayors Park tennis and netball facilities, Fitzroy Tennis Club and Alphington Bowls Club reopened on Friday 15 May 2020. Please continue to practice physical distancing and good personal hygiene when using our facilities. 

Youth Services

Yarra Youth Services programs and activities are suspended until further notice. This includes the temporary closure of our Youth Centre at 156 Napier Street, Fitzroy.

The L2P program is also suspended until further notice.

We’re carefully planning the best way to open our doors to you, and things may look a little different when we do! We will update you as soon as we have more news to share.

In the meantime we're still here for you – get in touch by calling us on 9426 1455, or follow us on Facebook and Instagram. If you, a friend or loved one need urgent support, contact Triple Zero (000), Lifeline (13 11 14) or Kids Helpline (1800 551 800).

Business support

We are committed to supporting our business community through this challenging time. If you run a business in Yarra, we've put together a list of resources to help you, including:

  • what businesses can open and what businesses must close
  • a map of more than 100 local food and drink businesses offering takeaway/delivery options
  • refunds on council health registrations and footpath trading permits
  • free mentoring sessions
  • free membership to the Victorian Chamber of Commerce
  • information from the Australian Government, Victorian Government, Australian Taxation Office, Australian Banking Association and other entities
  • how to best support local business at this time

Visit our Business page for the latest information.

You can also contact our Economic Development team via email.

Events and venues

We’re following the Victorian Government’s restrictions on public gatherings, and will continue to do so when considering future event bookings.

We recognise the importance of events to our community. We're eager to work with event organisers to ensure all public safety requirements are met according to current regulations.

Where event permits are normally required, we will assess applications on an case-by-case basis.

Major event permits

We have opened expressions of interest for major event permits to help event organisers to plan for the year aheead. Any permits issued will be subject to the current Victorian or Federal government restrictions at the time of the event.

Regularly check our Events page for current information.

Town hall and meeting room bookings

We are now taking bookings for some community spaces, in line with the current maximum occupancy of 20 people.

We're also providing more flexibility for bookings moving forward, including for processing times and booking fees. 

We'll consider all booking requests on a case-by-case basis to ensure maximum community benefit. 

Family and children's services

Long day care

We are returning to our usual service hours and capacity by Monday 29 June 2020.

The temporary bookings we introduced in April will apply until Sunday 28 June 2020. Permanent bookings that were current as of Sunday 15 March will be reinstated from Monday 29 June 2020.

If you are currently enrolled and need a casual booking, contact your centre directly. 

If you would like to continue your regular booking before July, contact your centre leader to discuss your options. 

After school care

After school care is now available to all families. If you would like to know more about our service, please email us or call 9205 5555.

Occasional care

Our occasional care service is suspended until further notice. If you have any questions, please email us or call the Connie Benn Centre on 9426 1500.

Vacation care

Yarra's winter 2020 Vacation Care program will be be operating at two sites:

  • Collingwood College
  • Richmond West Primary School. 

Both programs will be based on-site, with no outings, excursions or incursions (visitors). Visit Vacation Care for details.

Parent activity programs, external programs and playgroups

Parent activity programs and all external programs at Connie Benn Centre have been postponed until further notice. Supported playgroups have also been suspended until further notice. Contact your centre for more information.

First-time parent group

All face-to-face groups are suspended while we trial online sessions. Get in touch with us on 9205 5599 for more information.

Federal Government’s childcare subsidy

The Federal Government has announced subsidised childcare for eligible families who need support through the COVID-19 pandemic. We are working with families who access our long day care services about what it means for them.

Maternal child health centres

Our maternal child health centres are currently open, with some changes to services. We will no longer be seeing clients face-to-face – all consultations will be via phone. After you make a booking we will send you more information before your appointment.

You can also contact the maternal and child health booking line on 9205 5599 for more information.

Toy libraries

All Yarra toy libraries are closed until further notice.

Immunisations

Our immunisation program continues to operate with additional safety precautions in place. View our upcoming immunisation sessions online.

So we can practice physical distancing, we've allowed more time for sessions and changed some of our venues. Read more about what we're doing to keep you safe at our immunisation sessions. 

Flu vaccinations

Our $15 flu vaccine protects against four currently circulating influenza strains. It does not protect against COVID-19.

We encourage everyone to get the flu vaccination as soon as possible this year, as getting infected with both the flu and COVID-19 at the same time could result in serious illness.

Parking

Parking permits

While we are mindful that some people may prefer to get around by car during this time, we're still unable to issue parking permits to ineligible residents or businesses. 

Parking permits will continue to be issued to eligible people as per our Parking Permit Policy.

We are taking the current climate into consideration, however remind drivers that it remains a requirement to park legally at all times.

Parking fines and fees

If you have received a parking fine and have difficulty paying, please make an online appeal with details of your current situation.

If you are concerned about any permit fees, please contact us with details of your current situation.

All other services

Household waste and recycling collections, planning, building, animal management, and parking and traffic services are operating as usual until further notice.

Hard waste collection is continuing, but some delays may occur.