In a life threatening emergency dial Triple Zero (000)

In a life threatening emergency dial Triple Zero (000)
ACT Public Hospitals

Canberra Hospital

5124 0000

Calvary Hospital

6201 6111

Mental Health

Call Mental Health Triage on

1800 629 354

(free call except from mobiles or public phones) or

6205 1065

Poisons Hotline

For a poison emergency in Australia call


Drug and Alcohol Help Line

The Drug and Alcohol Help Line is available 24-hours, 7 days a week on

5124 9977

Health Protection Service

For after hours urgent public health matters including environmental health, radiation safety, food poisoning and communicable disease management phone:

(02) 6205 1700


24 hour health advice

1800 022 222

ACT State Emergency Service

Emergency help
during flood or storms

132 500

Return to Work Grants Program

About the ACT Women’s Return to Work Program

The ACT Women’s Return to Work Program is an ACT Government initiative that assists women to achieve increased financial independence by helping them prepare for, obtain and maintain employment. The program is targeted towards women who have been away from paid work for an extended time due to caring responsibilities, and who may experience significant barriers when they try to re-enter the workforce.

Return to Work Grants

Please note, that this grant process generally takes a minimum of 4 weeks.

Individual grants of up to $1,000 are available for women who meet the eligibility criteria. The program is designed to provide funding for training and education, to develop job search skills and to access related resources to support women to return to work.

The grants are available to women who meet the following eligibility requirements:

  • low income (based on Centrelink means testing);
  • have at any time in their life been unemployed for 12 months or more due to caring responsibilities;
  • have been out of the workforce for 12 months or more;
  • not currently employed;
  • or not worked for more than four months (full-time or part-time equivalent) during the past 12 months;
  • not currently on maternity, or paid/unpaid leave;
  • plan to return to paid work within the next 12 months; has been a resident of the ACT for more than three months; (note: residency requirements may be waived if applicant has relocated to escape domestic violence)
  • is not receiving financial support to cover the full costs of training and related materials through a Jobs Services Australia provider or through ACT Government assistance such as Canberra Institute of Technology scholarships while participating in this Program; and/or
  • has not previously received the ACT Women’s Return to Work Grant.

Please read the Return to Work Grants Policy 2019-20 for more information.

In 2019-20, the Return to Work Grants Program will include two new components (funded through the Future Skills for Future Jobs Grant Program, under the National Partnership on the Skilling Australians Fund):

Mentoring for Return to Work Grant clients

This component will allow women who are accept to receive a $1000 Return to Work Grant to also receive one-on-one mentorship to better link them to vocational education/training opportunities and employment pathways. This component will be delivered through a Relationship Manager at UnitingCare KippaxExternal Link, who will provide mentoring support and help women in developing their workplan to inform how they spend their grant.

For further information, please see attached flyer.

Return to Work Workshop Series

The SPARK Ginninderry Training and Employment Return to Work Worskhop Series initiative is part of the Return to Work Program funded by the ACT Office for Women. The Workshops are delivered in partnership with the ACT Career Shop. It is open to women who live within the Canberra region to assist them to build self-esteem and build the skills and confidence to return to work.

The SPARK initiative demonstrates the government’s commitment to ensuring women and girls in the ACT are supported to participate in all aspects of society, including the workforce.

It aligns with the ACT Women’s Plan 2016-26. The Plan articulates the government’s commitment to removing barriers to enable women and girls to reach their potential, contribute to innovation and ideas and to take up leadership positions.

The SPARK initiative consists of a series of free workshops and a four hour individual planning session designed to provide women with practical skills and techniques that will assist them in securing employment.
Flyer [PDF 735KB]


Women’s Information
Phone: 6205 2885 (Women’s Return to Work Grants Coordinator)

Address mail to:

The Return to Work Grants Coordinator
Women’s Information
GPO Box 158
Canberra ACT 2601