Eas­ing the pas­sage

Wanneroo Times - - YOUTH HOMELESSNESS - Denise S. Cahill

PAS­SAGES Youth En­gage­ment Hub will be able to con­nect home­less youth to more ser­vices and wel­come more clients through the doors of a new fa­cil­ity in Perth.

The new hub on Ed­ward Street, which was ren­o­vated over two years, was of­fi­cially opened this month.

It in­cludes open plan liv­ing spa­ces, more meet­ing rooms and modern shower fa­cil­i­ties.

The ex­tra space means Home­less Health Care can set up in a big­ger meet­ing room ev­ery Mon­day, com­ple­ment­ing other ser­vices such as Street Con­nect, Street Law, Fi­nan­cial Coun­selling and Job Hive.

Pas­sages hubs are a joint ven­ture be­tween Vin­nies WA and the Ro­tary Club of Perth that of­fer young home­less peo­ple aged be­tween 12 and 25 ba­sic needs such as food, shower and clothes wash­ing fa­cil­i­ties, as well as ac­cess to sup­port ser­vices.

Ser­vice co-or­di­na­tor Ni­amh Kiely said the first client through the doors on Oc­to­ber 29 was brought to tears.

“She’s a long-time client and was in tears and said ‘is this all for us?’,” Ms Kiely said.

Ms Kiely is one of four full-time so­cial work­ers at the hub and a fifth will soon join the team part-time.

She said staff mem­bers could work with four clients at a time so the ex­tra re­source meant Pas­sages could sup­port more young peo­ple at the new fa­cil­ity.

“Peo­ple come and go, they do well with us but then some­thing hap­pens and they need sup­port again,” she said.

“We don’t close the door on them.”

Vin­nies is among many ser­vice providers sup­port­ing the na­tional Home Stretch cam­paign that is en­cour­ag­ing state gov­ern­ments to sup­port young peo­ple in State care to the age of 21.

Ms Kiely said more than 30 per cent of Pas­sages clients had come from State care.

She said in­creas­ing the age meant or­gan­i­sa­tions such as Vin­nies could seek more sup­port from the De­part­ment for Child Pro­tec­tion and Fam­ily Sup­port.

Pic­ture: An­drew Ritchie www.com­mu­ni­typix.com.au d488576

Ser­vices co-or­di­na­tor Ni­amh Kiely in the new Pas­sages fa­cil­ity.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.