Training & Information Program (TIP)
The Training and Information Program (TIP) was reviewed as part of the Review of DVA-funded ESO Advocacy and Welfare Services. The Review has now been completed and the Final Report has been released.
What is TIP?
The Training and Information Program (TIP) provides training and information for welfare and pensions officers who are volunteers working within ex-service organisations (ESOs). TIP training is delivered to enable them to provide the best possible advice to veterans and former serving members of the defence forces seeking their services.
See: More information in the TIP charter (PDF 25 kB)
How is TIP administered?
TIP is a joint venture between ESOs and the Department of Veterans’ Affairs (DVA). Each state has a consultative group that consists of representatives of ESOs and DVA. This group monitors the conduct of training and provides advice on matters of course delivery, programming and development.
What type of training does TIP provide?
TIP offers training for new welfare and pensions officers, refresher and update training and advanced training for experienced welfare and pensions officers. In many states, seminars on important issues are offered to extend the skills of practising welfare and pensions officers.
Welfare Officer training provides information about the wide array of community services that are available and DVA’s health and housing services and others services that are available for veterans, their dependants, war widows and former serving members that are not pensions-related. Expert presenters deliver modules that provide skills in interviewing, networking, ethics, privacy and the role and responsibilities of welfare officers.
Pensions officer training develops skills to assist claims under the Veterans’ Entitlements Act 1986. Military compensation courses cover entitlements under the Safety, Rehabilitation and Compensation Act 1988 and the Military Rehabilitation and Compensation Act 2004. Training is also provided to advocates who assist with appeals to the Veterans’ Review Board and the Administrative Appeals Tribunal.
Each state has a comprehensive suite of courses available. The subject matter taught on courses in each state is mostly very similar and there are common learning outcomes for each module. Variations do exist between states in the way that the courses and modules are delivered and there can be variations in the course content to suit local needs. For descriptions of the courses available and the entry pre-requisites for the courses, please click on the link for your state.
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Who conducts the training?
In most instances, training is conducted by former members of the Australian Defence Forces who have training and development experience and a background in veterans’ compensation. The ESO presenters are aided by DVA staff who present sessions on their areas of subject expertise. External speakers from community organisations and other state and federal government departments are also used in most locations.
When and where are the courses run?
Each state has a calendar of courses. Click on the link for your state’s course calendar and description of the courses that are available.
Courses are run in capital cities and major centres depending on demand.
How do I access TIP training?
If you are interested in attending TIP training you need to be endorsed by an ESO. Each state has entry pre-requisites for some of their courses.
You can find your state’s application form by clicking on the link for that state.
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Does TIP provide accreditation for welfare and pensions officers’ training?
Completing TIP courses does not confer any accreditation on the individual. The training that is run in each state is delivered using a national module format so that training is broadly the same in each state. It is the responsibility of ESOs to manage the performance of their volunteers who abide by a code of ethics to provide a high level quality service to the individuals that they assist.
Certificates of attendance are provided in most locations.
See: TIP Code of Ethics (PDF 55 kB)
How do I get more information?
You can contact either the TIP chairperson or the DVA TIP co-ordinator in your state. Their contact details are available by clicking on the link for your state.
What insurance cover do welfare and pensions officers have?
The Veterans’ Indemnity and Training Association (PDF 142 kB) (VITA) has been established for the purpose of providing professional indemnity insurance for suitably qualified, trained and authorised members of ex-service organisations who give advice in good faith to the ex-service community on matters relating to DVA pension and compensation entitlements and welfare support. VITA also provides an accident insurance policy to cover those people who conduct training under the auspices of TIP, providing their parent ESO is a member of VITA.
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How do I find a welfare or pensions officer?
All states have contact details for welfare and pensions officers operating in their state. You can contact either the TIP chairperson or the DVA TIP co-ordinator in your state to get information about locating a welfare or pensions officer.
Resources for welfare and pensions officers
This information is intended for current welfare and pensions officers as one of the many tools that can be used to assist them in their job of helping veterans, widows, their dependents and former serving members.
All pensions and welfare officers have agreed to the TIP Code of Ethics (PDF 55 kB).
The department, together with TIP chairpersons, has produced the Repatriation handbook that provides broad information about DVA services and programs, and community and ESO resources that are available.
See: Repatriation handbooks for welfare and pensions officers
See: What to do when death comes visiting (PDF 150KB) (RTF 8MB)
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