Save CHIRP Services Sign Petition here


For more than 35 years, the communities of Mount Alexander Shire have known who to turn to when they need help.

CHIRP Community Health (Registered as Castlemaine District Community Health) is the first port of call for people who have been diagnosed with chronic diseases like diabetes and heart disease, for parents and families struggling with challenges, or people looking for help with alcohol and other drug usage.

Locals wondering who to turn to when times are tough have always turned to CHIRP.

From those who are most vulnerable in our community – dealing with homelessness, or various mental health issues – to those of us needing services to lead a healthy life, whether it’s community nursing, asthma and allergy support, dietetics, community gym and walking groups or diabetes outreach, CHIRP’s services have been vital.

Sadly, CHIRP may not be around to turn to in future.

Government funding has not kept pace with the rising cost of delivering community health services. This is happening across the board for community health, but smaller rural services like ours are the hardest hit.

We have a plan to strengthen and continue our services by integrating with Castlemaine Hospital and operating a Health and Wellbeing Hub, in partnership with Castlemaine Health, Maldon Hospital and Mount Alexander Shire Council.

But we need a commitment from the Victorian Government in the meantime, so we can maintain our services and not be forced to close our doors just as we have a solution in sight.

The Minister for Health, the Hon Jenny Mikakos MLC has said that this is a matter for the Board and management. But the communities of Castlemaine and District cannot stand by and watch our services diminish and our centre close.

Please support us by signing this petition calling on the State Government to:

  1. Keep our community services local
  2. Maintain our community’s current health and social services by providing an additional $350,000 annually in funding
  3. Give back the relocation grant that was taken away to secure a short-term home for service delivery
  4. Commit to funding the first stage of a Health and Wellbeing Hub for community health and wellbeing services in Mount Alexander Shire
  5. Support a community model of health and let CHIRP get on with delivering vital services for our community

If you want to maintain and expand your local community health services, please sign our petition and send a message to the Hon Jenny Mikakos, MLC, Minister for Health.

  • Contact The Hon Jenny Mikakos, State Minister for Health, Victorian State Government at: phone (03) 9096 8561 and copy us in or send to
  • Let us know if it is ok to share your information or story if you do send us your information
  • Contact our local MP – Maree Edwards to see how she is supporting us
  • Contact – The Hon Greg Hunt, Federal Minister for Health, Federal Parliament: to highlight the issue given that we have reached out for support for capital funding and support for the Health and Wellbieng Partnership. He has indicated that funding has already been allocated however there was a call this week for further infrastructure funding from the Federal Government.
  • Sign a petition – we have some at 13 Mostyn Street and GP practices.
  • CHIRP with the help of our local website designer is developing postcards of support. When these are available, all you need to do is fill one in and either pop in the post or drop into us and we will post these for you.
  • Help us spread the word about our situation and campaign and keep the campaign going as we intend to do everything that we can to keep health services local and accessible.

Sign Petition here