It’s Neighbour Day every day for Nathan
- 1 April 2021 11:14AM
Dubbed ‘Mr knight in shining armour’, Nathan loves helping people living in his new social housing complex in Ipswich.
“I grew up in the country where if you see that someone needs a hand, you help them out,” said Nathan.
After being homeless and then spending 5 months in rehab, Nathan feels good helping other tenants in his new home. For Nathan, being a good neighbour means being polite and respectful.
“I try to be a good neighbour by saying hello to other tenants and helping them out when they need something, they all know that they can knock on my door,” he said. \
“The other day, an elderly lady came a knocked on my door and I was able to help her, I also helped the young fellow above me put his bed together the other day and have helped other tenants with theirs too.”
As well as having good neighbours, Nathan says another positive about his home is that it’s conveniently located.
“It’s really close to the CBD, I can walk to the doctors, I can walk to the bus stop or to the train, the supermarkets are nearby or I can hop on a bus and go across to Riverlink shopping centre.”
The 20-unit, four storey apartment building provides onsite support from St. Vincent de Paul Society on the ground floor to help tenants sustain their tenancy and transition from homelessness or crisis accommodation into more permanent housing. Nathan likes that the design of the building allows him to have privacy with spaces that allow opportunities to be social too.
“My home means a lot to me, it’s somewhere safe, you can have some peace and quiet and it makes me feel good,” he said.
Nathan says that the support he has received so far has been great.
“The staff have all been really good, there’s some new staff just starting, and I’ll be working with them soon.”
“Sometimes I sit in the foyer and have a yarn with the staff and some of the other tenants. It’s good spot to sit because some tenants are elderly and can’t walk far.”
Another positive is that Nathan’s ground floor, 1-bedroom unit is easy to clean and provides him with just the right amount of space.
“I only need to sweep, mop and vacuum once a week and my unit has enough space for me,” said Nathan.
Looking to the future of the complex, Nathan is hoping to help plant a communal garden, something that reminds him of his country upbringing.
“I wouldn’t mind looking after a communal garden if we got one. I’d like to plant some veggies. I’ve already got some tomato plants on my balcony that I’m looking after,” he said.