The Victorian Government will invest $109 million to assist those at risk of or experiencing homelessness.
The package will help 19,000 people at risk of or experiencing homelessness including young people, rough sleepers, veterans and people experiencing chronic homelessness over the next five years.
The package consists of three key areas of focus:
$15.63 million to respond early to ensure that people do not become homeless
$60.84 million to provide person centred responses and wrap around support
$32.74 million to better support people to sustain long term housing and achieve independence
The information on initiatives included in this package are outlined below:
Respond early to ensure that people do not become homeless
Responding early is the best thing that can be done to prevent homelessness. By helping people earlier and providing preventative pathways we are able to ensure that people who could be at risk of being homeless do not fall into the cycle of homelessness.
This initiative will build on existing homelessness assessment and planning capacity in prisons to assist up to 1,500 prisoners per year who are exiting the system (including prisoners who have been victims of family violence) across Victoria’s prison system.
Young people, especially those exiting residential care and youth justice services, who are at risk of homelessness need support to ensure they have every opportunity to succeed.
A diversity of medium term housing options are being funded to ensure that young people experiencing or at risk of homelessness, including young people leaving care and exiting youth justice can be matched with housing options within local catchments.
Information for partners
The Victorian Government will be looking to engage with the homelessness sector, including local councils to deliver this project.
More information on this process and relevant sector information such as industry briefings will be made available at a later date.
Providing person centred responses and wrap around support
The Victorian Government is providing better integrated support services and housing options for people in crisis to address the causes of homelessness and help them establish and maintain secure housing. Here’s how we are providing person centred and wrap around support:
Assertive outreach is a mobile homelessness support response that sees skilled workers out on the streets every day helping and housing people who are sleeping rough.
It is essential to find and work with people who may mistrust offers of help based on previous failures or negative experiences. Assertive outreach can rebuild their confidence to accept offers of support and housing.
Assertive outreach will be increased in the Melbourne CBD and to expand services in outer suburbs and regional areas to tackle homelessness where it starts.
An immediate boost has already been provided to the homelessness agencies working in the Melbourne CBD in response to the unprecedented levels of homelessness occurring there
Congregate crisis accommodation facilities will be enhanced to improve the health of approximately 1,900 people per year.
Specialist staff will deliver preventative, harm reduction and other therapeutic interventions on site to maximise opportunities to improve people’s wellbeing while they are in the crisis accommodation.
This includes improving pathways to universal and other targeted services, such as alcohol and other drug services.
Accommodation for the Homeless Phase 2 follows the success of the program’s first round in 2016. It will provide up to $25 million in funding for new or innovative redeveloped long term housing or crisis accommodation options that provide flexible support for Victorians most in need, and leverages other service delivery opportunities to provide a pathway out of homelessness.
Information for partners
The invited submission process for Accommodation for the Homeless Phase 2 has now closed. All enquiries regarding Accommodation for the Homeless Phase 2 should be directed to HAAS@dhhs.vic.gov.au.
As part of the $109 million investment the Government has announced a $15 million investment for the H3 Wyndham Alliance, a partnership of health, housing and homelessness agencies in the Western Melbourne area.
The funding will help provide access to sustainable housing for the time a person needs while providing wrap around services to support those who need a greater level of assistance, including family violence support, youth support services, mental health, drug and alcohol counselling, legal and financial help.
Each year, this investment is expected to help more than 1,700 people in the Wyndham area.
Better support people to sustain long term housing and achieve independence
One of the greatest challenges faced by people experiencing homelessness can be maintaining long-term housing in times of crisis. We have developed a range of flexible supports to help people live more independently. This ranges from light-touch rental supports for people who don’t require long term assistance through to providing supported housing for those who need a bit more assistance to achieve independence.
Here's how we are providing better support for people to sustain housing and achieve independence:
Providing two-year flexible support packages for people who have experienced chronic homelessness each year to help them transition to stable and sustainable housing. This is new resourcing to provide the ongoing support necessary to sustain housing for people sleeping rough, including mental health and alcohol and other drugs support..
A new supportive housing facility will be constructed up to 30 units for women and children who are homeless or at risk of homelessness ensuring they are assisted to successfully live as independently as possible.
Funding over two years for the head leasing of up to 124 properties to facilitate the rapid re-housing of people experiencing homelessness.
It will build on the success of first two rounds of Rapid Housing which saw the purchase of 278 new social housing properties and the head leasing of a further 203 properties to rapidly rehouse people escaping family violence and people experiencing homelessness.
Information for partners
As in previous Rapid Housing funding rounds, the Victorian Government will be looking to engage with the community sector to deliver this initiative.
Providers will have the opportunity to extend head leasing arrangements funded in 2016-17 or pursue new arrangements.
More information on process and industry briefings will be made available at a later date.