Val's Cafe was funded by the Department of Social Services to work in partnership with Carers Australia to document the experiences and needs of older LGBTI carers and the carers of older LGBTI people. Interviews and a survey form the basis of a resource that includes stories from carers and a guide to LGBTI inclusive services for carers. Click here for the full report.

This paper presents data from a small study exploring the impacts of homophobia on the lives of older lesbian and gay Australians. Eleven in-depth interviews were conducted with older lesbians (6) and gay men (5) ranging in age from 65 to 79 years. The study found that participants’ sense of self was shaped by the dominant medical, legal and religious institutions of their youth that defined them as sick, immoral or criminal. Participants described enforced “cure” therapies, being imprisoned, having employment terminated and being disowned and disinherited by family. In this context, intimate relationships and social networks provided refuge where trust was rebuilt and sexuality affirmed. Many created safe spaces for themselves. This equilibrium was threatened with increasing age, disability and the reliance on health and social services. Participants feared a return to institutional control and a need to “straighten up” or hide their sexuality. In response, partners stepped into the role of caregiver, at times beyond their capacity and at a cost to their relationship. The study describes the importance of understanding social connections in the lives of older lesbians and gay men. It highlights the need for inclusive services to ensure that social networks are supported and that health and well-being are promoted.

Download the PDF or access the article here online.





Supporting the sexual and gender diversity of older LGBTI people

This resource is an introduction to Val's Cafe, the work that we do and an overview of the needs of older LGBTI people. This new booklet, features wonderful images from our Then and Now film project. We would recommend you use this resource for training sessions, information stalls and just generally to introduce people to Val's Cafe, LGBTI ageing issues and the work that we do. Download the booklet here or get in touch for hard copies to be posted to you.

The SAP Tool is a audit designed specifically for aged care services, by Val's Cafe.

It provides an essential starting point for organisations and services that want to assess how inclusive they are to older LGBTI people. The SAP tool can be used as part of an assessment cycle, to keep coming back and checking where you are at. Please get in contact with Val's Cafe if you require hard copies and we'll post them to you.

It has arrived! The HACC Pack. Complete and newly designed. This resource is supported by funding from the Commonwealth and Victorian Governments under the Home and Community Care program.

This resource is targeted at Home and Community Care workers who work with older people. However, it is about applying the standards for LGBTI inclusive service and working with older LGBTI people, making it broadly useful.


In 2010 Gay and Lesbian Health Victoria (GLHV) piloted a program to assist health and human services
organisations develop practices and protocols that are inclusive of gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender
and intersex (GLBTI) clients. The program is called: How

2 create a GLBTI-inclusive service. The How2 pilot
was successful and was repeated in 2011, in collaboration with the Centre for Excellence in Rural Sexual



A third program commenced in 2012 and its achievements are the focus of this report.
This report opens by describing the context that led to the development of the How2 program. Section Two
provides an outline of the program and underpinning principles. Section Three outlines a program logic
model and describes some of the changes noted by the facilitators in this third iteration of the program.
Section Four presents six case studies written by change facilitators who participated in the program. The
final section provides a list of additional resources for GLBTI inclusive practice.

Like its predecessor, the second report on the How2 program makes an important contribution to our
growing understanding of what constitutes GLBTI-inclusive practice in Australia and internationally.





Our most recent addition to our 'AC' series of resources, the RAC Pack is designed for workers in residential aged care. We are still seeking feedback on this resource hence 'DRAFT' appearing on the front cover. 

As part of the La Trobe University 'Big Fat Idea' series Catherine Barrett filmed her 'big fat idea' for a society that is inclusive of older LGBTI people. This is a great place to start if you want to understand what we do and why we do it. It is also an excellent   introductory training tool. Here at Val's Cafe we just think it's excellent full stop, great work Catherine! 

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