Disability services expansion to provide more support Tue 9 October 2012 Cassy O'Connor Minister for Human Services Download hi-res version The expansion of a disability service provider to new premises on Hobart's eastern shore is expected to result in more services for Tasmanians living with a disability. The Minister for Human Services, Cassy O'Connor, today officially opened STAR Tasmania's new premises in Alexandra Esplanade, Bellerive. "STAR Tasmania plays an important role in helping Tasmanians with disability, providing support for 41 residents across 11 group homes, as well as community access, individual support programs, and respite services for children and adults," she said. "This new facility reflects STAR Tasmania's commitment to supporting people living with disabilities, and offers access to a range of tenancy support services and school holiday programs." Ms O'Connor said programs run by organisations like STAR play an important role in the lives of Tasmanians with disability. "These programs help people with disability stay engaged and form valuable friendships," she said. "Clients who took part in STAR Tasmania's September school holiday program took part in a range of activities including planting a garden, going to the movies, making musical instruments and going to the beach." Ms O'Connor said the Department of Health and Human Services has provided STAR with more than $8 million funding in this financial year for supported accommodation, community access, in home and respite services for Tasmanians with a disability. She said the Tasmanian Government was continuing to work with the community sector ahead of the launch of the National Disability Insurance Scheme in Tasmania next year. "This groundbreaking reform will make a significant difference in the lives of Tasmanians with a disability, with about 1,000 Tasmanians with disability aged between 15 and 24 set to benefit from next year's launch," she said. "Through this expansion, STAR Tasmania has shown it is looking to the future and getting ready for the launch of this important initiative. "This new site offers great flexibility for programs that could be delivered as part of the launch scheme for the 15-24 age group when it begins mid-2013." STAR Tasmania is leasing the property in Bellerive from the Department of Economic Development, Tourism and the Arts.