Open door pol­icy

Wanneroo Times - - News - Denise S. Cahill

OUT­GO­ING Angli­care WA chief ex­ec­u­tive Ian Carter says the suc­cess of Foyer Ox­ford in Leed­erville is one of his proud­est achieve­ments in the past 24 years.

Mr Carter, who will leave the or­gan­i­sa­tion early next year, said nearly 400 home­less youth had come through the cen­tre, with 93 per cent mov­ing on to in­de­pen­dent hous­ing and 86 per cent still en­gaged in ed­u­ca­tion, train­ing or em­ploy­ment since leav­ing.

He said 25 per cent of res­i­dents at Foyer Ox­ford had come from State care.

Angli­care WA is among many or­gan­i­sa­tions back­ing the na­tional Home Stretch cam­paign urg­ing state govern­ments to sup­port leg­is­la­tion for young peo­ple in State care un­til they are 21 rather than 18.

“Home Stretch was so ob­vi­ous to us be­cause we were al­ready work­ing with the young peo­ple and we know that exit care is a good thing,” Mr Carter said.

“The wrap­around sup­port is what fam­i­lies nat­u­rally have, but when you are home­less you live in iso­la­tion and have of­ten lived a trau­matic ex­is­tence and don't have those sup­port struc­tures.

“But at Foyer Ox­ford you be­come part of the com­mu­nity here and have your case man­agers, youth work­ers as well as each other.”

When Mr Carter was ap­pointed chief ex­ec­u­tive in 1995, Angli­care WA was a tra­di­tional agency, do­ing the same thing ev­ery year.

“When I started we turned over $2.5 mil­lion a year; now we turn over $45 mil­lion a year and have 1000 staff and vol­un­teers.”

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