06 Aug Why affordable housing matters and how you can reduce homelessness
1 in every 200 people is homeless in Australia. Brian was one them.
Educated, articulate and well-dressed, you wouldn’t guess that Brian Morgan was homeless only last year.
“I came to Uniting when I was at a very low point,” Brian remembers. “I was going through an accommodation crisis and ended up homeless.
“It was a very difficult situation – very stressful. I had nowhere to go, so I ended up having to stay in a pub… which is not a great place to be if you’re in recovery [from alcohol addiction].”
With 1 in every 200 people experiencing homelessness in Australia, compassion from the whole community is required. We know the solution is for the government to provide more funding for affordable housing. That’s why we’re joining the Uniting Church to campaign for housing affordability.
Vicki Daley heads up the homelessness program in Sydney’s Central Coast, where Brian turned to in his moment of crisis.
While Brian could find refuge, Vicki says the housing crisis will continuing to grow and many more people will become homeless.
“We are seeing record numbers of people walk through our doors because they are homeless or on the verge of homelessness,” says Vicki.
“There has never been a more pressing time for the community to come together to find solutions and advocate for affordable housing.”
A stable future: Brian’s plan
With the support of his Uniting Housing Connector, Karl, Brian found affordable housing through a local transitional accommodation program.
He has completed his Certificate IV and started a Diploma in Community Service work. He remains focused, is approaching two years sober and is making plans to secure employment and his own private rental before the year is out.
Affordable housing: Brian’s doorway
Uniting Doorways provides a centralised contact point for assessment and case coordination for people like Brian – homeless or at risk of homelessness on the central coast.
The program links families to:
- Emergency relief
- Financial counselling
- Mental health support
- Domestic violence services
- Tenancy advice and legal services
- Referrals to crisis and transitional accommodation
- An early intervention program that helps people remain in their homes – taking action before things reach crisis point.
How you can make a difference
- Campaign for housing affordability
Visit the Uniting Church’s housing affordability campaign page to lend your support. Sign a petition and join a local action team.
- March for homelessness
We’re hosting a Homelessness Week March in Gosford to raise awareness for the urgent and growing housing crisis.
When: 12pm, Wednesday 7 August 2019
Where: Meet at Burns Place Park at Gosford Train Station.
The march will travel down Mann St and arrive at Kibble park at around 12:30pm where local services will host stalls and activities.