MURRAYLANDS residents in crisis will be able to access free mobile calls and data through a new initiative by ac.care.
Clients at ac.care's Murray Bridge site have access to free prepaid Optus SIM cards to ensure they can remain connected.
Ac.care homelessness and community services manager Trish Spark said the agency was constantly seeking ways to boost the support provided to people as the housing crisis impacts on communities and people face increased pressures including homelessness, rental pressure, domestic violence and poverty.
"We know that access to communications is vital for people in crisis to protect their safety, engage with services, apply for jobs or housing and keep connected with family and friends, especially if they may not have a stable home or personal address," she said.
Ms Spark said internet-access was vital as services, including Centrelink, have increasingly moved online.
"Mobile data is essential if someone is in crisis and needs to be connected with these services, especially for people in rural and regional settings unable to access services in-person due to having no access to effective means of transport," she said.
Ac.care have become part of Optus' Donate Your Data program through a partnership with national charity Good360 Australia.
With an eligible mobile plan, Optus customers can donate some of their unused data to help Australians in need, with the benefits now flowing to ac.care clients as part of the national initiative.
Good360's South Australian partnerships manager Kate Stock said the charity was proud to partner with ac.care.
"Through our partnership with Optus, Good360 has provided six-month Crisis SIM cards to multiple ac.care sites to provide support to a range of vulnerable people, including to youth and country South Australians who are experiencing homelessness," Ms Stock said.
"Together ac.care and Good360 are contributing to help close the digital divide in regional South Australian communities."
- Details: Ac.care can be contacted on 1300 ACCARE (1300 222 273).
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