Villawood increases offer for care workers

June 7, 2024 BY

The grants are capped at 25 lots in each of Villawood's participating developments, including Coridale in Lara. Photo: FACEBOOK/CORIDALE

Nurses, teachers, emergency services staff, personal carers and other Victorian essential workers are now eligible for up to $35,000 in savings off the price of land from developer Villawood Properties.

The grants form part of Villawood’s Care Worker Support Program, which increased late last month from $20,000 to $35,000 in a community-targeted affordability drive to mark the developer’s 35th birthday.

Recently awarded state and national gongs by the Urban Development Institute of Australia, the program has assisted more than 300 care workers in three states to buy a home close to their workplace.

Villawood is using the grants to help care workers buy a home close to their workplace. Photo: FACEBOOK/ARMSTRONG MT DUNEED


The brainchild of Villawood executive director Rory Costelloe, whose own parents were both care workers, the grants have totalled to more than $4.46 million.

“The care worker program is part of the Villawood ethos of giving back to the community,” Mr Costelloe said.

“Care workers are remarkable human beings who hold our society together in so many ways. This program helps them and their presence in turn helps others in their neighbourhoods.

“It’s about strengthening our Villawood communities and the broader communities where care workers work.”

Australia Bureau of Statistics data shows wages of vital care workers could be as far as $21,000 below the average annual income. PWC research also suggests as many as 79 per cent of care workers dont’t believe they will ever own their own home.

Villawood chief executive officer Alan Miller said he was delighted to be able to increase the assistance for care workers.

“They are the backbone of our community, yet this research shows many can struggle to own their own homes.

“This program is aimed squarely at helping achieve that. It’s provided a mechanism to ensure they can live close to work and in a thriving, positive community.”

The program was previously means tested to individuals earning less than $85,000 or couples with a combined $135,000 income.

As part of the increase, Villawood also announced these salary caps were to be lifted to $125,000 per person and $195,000 per household, in an effort to ensure all care workers were eligible.

The increase to the Care Worker Support Program has elicited strong support from government, care sectors, unions, and the carers themselves.

Anna Ramos Ascue, an intensive care nurse who lives in the Armstrong Mt Duneed development, is a previous recipient of the grant, and remembers the huge impact it had on her.

“It was a great help — just not having to put up so much money out of pocket,” she said.

“It was really touching that Villawood thought about us, because you’ve been working so hard caring for people in the community so it’s like their way of giving back to us, which is so good.”

The grants are capped at 25 lots per participating development, including Armstrong Mt Duneed in Armstrong Creek and Coridale in Lara, for a total of 200 lots.

For more, head to villawoodproperties.com.au

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