The team continues to face the challenges of not having enough housing combined with the increasing prevalence of family violence and drug use within their portfolios. Those we house, the majority in our THM properties, are those who are homeless or at risk of homelessness. Most tenancies are successful resulting in tenants finding long-term housing solutions either in private rental, public, or affordable housing.
Funding received from the Rapid Housing Assistance Fund will undoubtedly influence the team’s work over the next 12 months, providing opportunities to create sustainable tenancies and partnerships. Working closely with our support partners we will identify properties to house families escaping family violence across the North East Melbourne area. Within this region we have nine properties to identify and X qualifying tenants will receive a discount off the market rent over a 12 month period. At the end of the 12 months they take on full responsibility of the lease and our organisation will then withdraw support. It is anticipated that this assistance will assist families to gain the independence they need to build a better life without the threat of family violence.
We understand that the provision safe, secure, and affordable housing is a vital component to someone’s quality of life and this is what we strive to achieve.
In 2015/16 the Bendigo and Geelong Housing Teams provided housing for over 1800 individuals and families and continued to meet our key performance indicators as required by the Victorian Housing Registrar. The Affordable Housing sector is instrumental in assisting people with affordability issues to remain housed and not fall into homelessness where further complex issues are likely to develop. Many living in Affordable Housing are there primarily because they cannot afford to access the private market. Let’s hope the important role Housing Associations have in keeping people from becoming homeless continues to be recognised and fostered.
Our environment can be challenging and often unpredictable, yet the team remain solution focused and resilient. Their dedication and passion to make a difference in their community is a testament to them and HHS. Challenges are a part of our everyday work, in particular within our Transitional Housing program. Staff are often privy to stories of tremendous personal hardship, disadvantage and unfortunate experiences. The compassion and understanding displayed by the Loddon and Barwon South West Housing Teams assists our tenants to feel valued as individuals and members of society, providing them with the confidence to make positive changes, sustain their housing and create better lives for themselves and their families.
The Barwon South West team have continued to perform well throughout the year despite some challenges. A fire incident at our Belmont complex led to a period of high turnover, the demand for affordable housing grew, and our team resources were stretched to accommodate for the Kypera project. In light of these challenges the team coped well and with the assistance of the newly appointed Director of BSW they look forward to growing the region’s portfolio and increasing the number of people housed over the next 12 months.
The Mallee team have been working with the Department of Health and Human Services to reduce neighbourhood fatigue, especially with THM crisis properties that can house difficult and complex tenancies. An agreement was reached with DHHS and this has improved the relationships with neighbours of HHS managed or owned properties.
Our THM tenants have been able to transition into long term sustainable housing more efficiently since strengthening our working relationships with local support services. In the next twelve months the team want to grow the Affordable Housing portfolio and work with local agencies to increase Supported Youth accommodation in the region. The Mallee team are investigating introducing the Learn Local program that is currently being run out of the Bendigo office.
AHA = Affordable Housing Association
THM = Transitional Housing Management