OperationMD! SWAP (Social Weekend Adult Program)

A Respite program to benefit families and primary carers.

Do you have a neuromuscular disorder?

Would you like to go away for the weekend and meet new people with similar interests and needs? Then this is the program for you!

What is OperationMD! SWAP?

OperationMD! SWAP (Social Weekend Adult Program) is a social/recreational opportunity, designed for adults who are living with a neuromuscular disorder. It involves both day and overnight outings in various locations within Victoria.

Why have OperationMD! SWAP?

OperationMD! SWAP is an excellent opportunity for adults with a neuromuscular disorder to meet and socialise with peers in an informal setting. The aim of the program is to provide participants with a memorable and positive experience

Trained MDA carers provide the support required to ensure the program participants have a memorable and enjoyable experience. OperationMD! SWAP also gives primary carers and families a much needed break from their duties of caring for their loved on with a disability.

How many people are at an OperationMD! SWAP?

Each overnight OperationMD! SWAP involves seven people with a neuromuscular disorder. All efforts are made to ensure that participants are matched according to age and interests. They are supported by three trained staff throughout the weekend.

How many OperationMD! SWAP?

Each year MDA conducts approximately three OperationMD! SWAPs within each Melbourne Metropolitan region and at our Wheelies’ Rest facilities in Axe Creek and Phillip Island.


MDA sources accommodation which is wheelchair friendly and can accommodate the number of people who attend. Common destinations throughout Victoria are Bendigo and Phillip Island. The accommodation is usually a four to five bedroom house which is fully self-contained.

What is the cost?

There are no costs for the participant. Transport, accommodation, meals and activities are covered by MDA.

How do I get there?

Participants are required to make their own way to a predetermined meeting point which is selected by MDA. The meeting point is usually within the participant’s region. Participants will be picked up from the meeting point, by an MDA vehicle on the Friday Morning and dropped off at the same meeting point on Sunday afternoon.

If you are not able to get yourself to the meeting point we encourage you to contact MDA and discuss alternative transportation.

What activities take place during OperationMD! SWAP?

Activities for the weekend are planned and resourced to ensure that each participant undertakes activities within their ability and activity outcomes contribute to positive self-esteem. Examples of activities include going to the movies, visiting a museum or other tourist attractions, having a picnic in the park and going out for dinner at a pub or restaurant.


“It was such fun and I’ve come home with a whole new group of friends and a new sense of courage that it is possible to go away and do things I haven’t dreamed about for many moons.”

“It would be very difficult for me to go away without the carers and they are always kind, caring and friendly.”

 “I really love going away and catching up with all the people it remains a highlight of my life.”

“As always when I go away with MDA I am impressed with the time and care we are given. It always seems to me that nothing is too much trouble for the carers.”

How do I access OperationMD! SWAP?

If you think this may be a program you would like to attend, you are caring for someone who you think would benefit from this program or would like more information about OperationMD! SWAP please contact MDA’s Respite Coordinator on 03 9320 9555 or Respite@mda.org.au.

MDA’s Respite Coordinator will provide you or the person you care for with further information, details on specific program dates and destinations and any relevant paperwork. These programs are available, however please note, they may not be available or accessible in all geographic locations.