The State Government has awarded a $2.4 million contract to accommodate and support people experiencing homelessness to Geraldton-based outreach service provider Centacare.
The Geraldton Housing First Support Service contract is an integral component of the McGowan Government’s $34.5 million Housing First Homelessness Initiative, which couples stable accommodation for rough sleepers with wraparound supports to keep them in accommodation long-term.
All Housing First Support Service providers must deliver evidence-based services that prioritise getting vulnerable people into accommodation first, and then connecting them with a network of specialist services that can help them.
The aim of the program is to specifically address the individual needs of chronic rough sleepers to manage the underlying causes and contributors to their homelessness, and help them to get their lives back on track.
Centacare has committed to deliver a strengths-based and culturally safe service method that is underpinned by local staff and knowledge over the five-year contract agreement to provide increased support to people sleeping rough in Geraldton.
The State Government is continuing its work to build on existing specialist service delivery methods that increase the community service sector’s capacity to help reduce the rate of people experiencing homelessness and assist people in need, in line with ‘All Paths Lead to a Home: Western Australia’s 10-Year Strategy on Homelessness 2020-2030’.
As stated by Community Services Minister Simone McGurk:
“Homelessness is a complex issue, but the McGowan Government has put the work in to find the best ways to address the range of issues that can lead to a person not having a safe place to stay.
“In line with our comprehensive 10-year strategy to address homelessness across WA, we are getting on with the job of leading innovative solutions that we know will improve long-term outcomes for people experiencing homelessness.
“Importantly, the Housing First Support Service delivers tailored supports that help people in need to build their confidence and capacity to maintain a home and place to live.
“The McGowan Government is committed to working collaboratively with the community services sector to improve outcomes for some of the most vulnerable people in the Mid-West, and Centacare has a strong track record of delivering supports in the local community.”
As stated by Geraldton MLA Lara Dalton:
“I welcome the appointment of Geraldton-based service Centacare to provide support and accommodation to people experiencing homelessness locally.
“The McGowan Government’s Housing First Homelessness Initiative draws on a proven model that has been successfully implemented in cities around the world, so I am confident it will make a big difference in our community.
“This is a significant investment in accommodation and wraparound supports for rough sleepers, so I look forward to this vulnerable group receiving increased assistance as a result.”