Helping people experiencing homelessness at Christmas

The City of Melbourne is asking Melburnians to consider donating to a homelessness support organisation this Christmas. 

​City of Melbourne Lord Mayor Sally Capp said that Melburnians are caring people and want to help people experiencing homelessness in the city.

“It’s a particularly hard time of year for people to be on the streets or facing housing uncertainty and I’ve had many kind-heartened people wanting to know how they can help those who are doing it tough,” the Lord Mayor said.

“We’re encouraging people who want to help to consider donating to a homelessness support organisation, which better supports people to break the cycle of homelessness. By giving direct to these organisations, you are not only helping provide items like food but also creating opportunities for rough sleepers to be supported long term.”

Melburnians are asked to consider donating directly to one of the City of Melbourne’s partner organisations which include: Anglicare Vic, The Big Issue, Launch Housing, Melbourne City Mission, The Salvation Army, Youth Projects or Vincentcare.

People can also buy the Big Issue magazine or Big Issue 2019 calendar from a street vendor, as a great way of supporting someone individually this Christmas.

Chair of the People City portfolio, Councillor Beverley Pinder, said there are incredibly complex circumstances that can lead to homelessness such as high rates of childhood trauma including sexual or physical abuse, or neglect.

“The advantage of supporting homelessness organisations is that they provide immediate help, but also the crucial, long-term support people really need to get off the streets,” Cr Pinder said.

“Christmas can be an especially difficult time for people sleeping on the street or experiencing homelessness and hardship. So please give generously this Christmas,” Cr Pinder said.

The City of Melbourne’s response to rough sleeping

We provide direct support and funding for a range of programs addressing homelessness and coordinate support services to help support people out of homelessness and into secure housing.

In 2018-19, we’re spending $1.8 million to build on our response to homelessness. This includes $480,000 to Frontyard Youth Services, $438,000 to operate the Night Time Safe Space at the Salvation Army’s Integrated Night Time Safe Space in Bourke Street, $377,000 for the Daily Support Team that works directly with rough sleepers and $341,000 for grants including Youth Street Teams, rooming house project, legal project, women’s homelessness project, and weekend meals program.

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