Lending a Helping Hand
Lending a Helping Hand During Winter
Bec Stott, Manager Philanthropy, Anglicare WA
A safe and stable place to call home is a basic human right. As winter approaches and the pandemic continues to challenge us, many of us have relied on a safe haven where we can isolate and where we can shelter from the weather.
Many people in Western Australia don’t have that opportunity and unfortunately, we are seeing a sharp rise in the rates of people experiencing homelessness.
It is worse than ever before. Each year Anglicare WA conducts the Rental Affordability Snapshot to measure the amount of housing available that is appropriate and affordable. Report can be accessed here: 2022 Rental Affordability Snapshot (anglicarewa.org.au). It will come as no surprise that rental affordability has worsened in Western Australia over the last year, continuing the pattern of the last 10 years.
Our snapshot focusses on housing for low-income households, particularly those that rely on Government income support payments and, increasingly, those on the minimum wage.
We are seeing these households being increasingly priced out of the private rental market across the State, paying too much of their income on rent or as a consequence, being forced to couch surf or sleep rough.
For a young parent on minimum wage, less than 1% of listed rentals are affordable.
Anglicare WA has created services that don’t just meet the needs of those doing it tough, but strive to provide opportunities for them to build a secure future – the dream of so many that cross our path.
That’s why Foyer Oxford, Australia’s largest youth accommodation service supporting young people aged 15-25 who have experienced homelessness, is so important. Because it takes away the added stress and anxiety of where a young person is going to sleep for the night and gives them the opportunity to put their dreams first.
Through wrap around support services, these young people can focus on what lies ahead. Through Foyer Oxford, Jason* who at the age of 20 was able to find a career pathway with the support of everyone around him and he is now getting ready to successfully leave Foyer Oxford.
He faced many barriers to gaining employment, due to struggles with numeracy and literacy, however he was determined to achieve his goals and did this by completing work experience and volunteering in the community.
Jason worked hard – he wanted to make a new life for himself. All he needed was for someone to believe in him and give him a chance, something he had never experienced before.
Without the dedicated support of the team at Foyer, Jason may not have found his independence or a career that truly brings him joy.
This winter, we need your support to make sure young people like Jason can focus on their dreams and find shelter from the cold.
To make a tax-deductible gift to support young people experiencing homelessness this winter, please donate to Anglicare WA at anglicarewa.org.au/donate