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Supporting small businesses in dairy communities

Financial resilience workshops and individual mentoring support

On this page

  • Assistance available for small businesses and the dairy supply chain in dairy farming regions
  • Workshop and mentoring dates
  • Assistance available for dairy farmers

The Victorian dairy industry is currently experiencing challenging economic and seasonal conditions. Small Business Victoria and Regional Development Victoria are working with Councils to provide free small business workshops and confidential small business mentoring support for businesses in dairy communities.

While the immediate focus is on supporting dairy farmers, the dairy farm supply chain businesses will have access to workshops and mentoring:

  • Small Business Resilience Workshops - 2 hour workshop focused on creating business resilience and how to conduct a financial health check
  • Individual Small Business Mentoring - access to individual and confidential mentoring from an experienced small business mentor in a private session, on the day after the workshops.

Workshop and mentoring sessions

Please email the Victorian Government for additional Workshop or Mentoring enquiries. 


map of Hume council
Gippsland Region


Workshop occurred 30 June

Workshop occurred 1 July 


Mentoring occurred 7 July  

Additional workshop and mentoring date to be advised


Workshop occurred 21 June

Mentoring occurred 21 and 22 June


Workshop occurred 22 June

Mentoring occurred 23 June


Loddon/Mallee Region  


Workshop occurred 14 July

Mentoring occurred 14 July


Workshop occurred 23 June

Mentoring occurred 24 June


Workshop occurred 24 June


map of Hume council
Hume Region


Workshop occured 7 September

Mentoring occured 7 September


Workshop occurred 21 June

Mentoring occurred 22 June


Workshop occurred 23 June

Mentoring occurred 23 June



Barwon South West Region 


Workshop occurred 14 June

Mentoring occurred 15 June


Workshop occurred 21 June

Mentoring occurred 22 June  


Workshop occurred 16 June

Mentoring occurred 17 June 

Other support

Increased support is being provided to help farmers make decisions, including through:

Increased support is also focusing on ensuring the health and wellbeing of farmers and communities, including through:

  • The Look Over the Farm Gate program, which is providing extra community wellbeing workshops and community events
  • Mental Health First Aid Training, which is giving the community valuable information about mental health issues and where to get help for themselves, their friends or family
  • Lifeline on 13 11 14
  • Beyond Blue on 1300 224 636
  • For further information about the support that is available, please call 136 186.

The Victorian Government has announced a $11.4 million package, including $5.2 million of industry funding, to roll out of further support for our dairy farmers. This incorporates a specific $1.5 million government assistance package to ensure there are more services available to dairy farmers experiencing emotional and financial stress.

$4.5 million has been set aside to support affected farming communities and the Victorian Government will consult on how these funds are best spent. For more support services visit Agriculture Victoria's Support for dairy farmers page.

Farm Debt Mediation

Victorian law provides that a farmer in default on a farm debt must be given the opportunity by the creditor to participate in a mediation conducted by the Victorian Small Business Commissioner. Farmers can also initiate this process. A creditor cannot pursue any legal avenues to recover its security interests when this process is underway. The Victorian Small Business Commissioner has conducted over 400 mediations between farmers and creditors in the past four years, with terms of settlement agreed between the parties in 96% of cases.

Farmers with other commercial disputes

The Victorian Small Business Commissioner provides a quick, low cost dispute resolution service for small and medium businesses (including farmers) in a commercial dispute with another business. Any type of commercial dispute can be referred to the Commissioner, and there is no constraint on the size of a business or the amount in dispute. Referring a commercial dispute to the Commissioner can lead to quick, pragmatic resolution of the problem and avoid matters escalating to litigation. The Commissioner's service has high resolution rates and high customer satisfaction ratings.

Contact the Victorian Small Business Commissioner on 13 VSBC (13 8722).