Support for those experiencing homelessness
- 20 July 2021 1:14PM
Saw was falling behind in rental payments and was at risk of losing his tenancy.
Thanks to Wesley Mission Queensland, he’s been able to keep his tenancy so he can focus on being a full-time dad to his three kids.
“I found the right people when I was in the wrong time,” says Saw.
“When the family is broken, it’s hard to [manage] finances.”
Saw’s transition to solo parenting was hard at first. He was referred to his local Neighbourhood and Community Centre where he found help from Woody, a trained counsellor with Wesley Mission Queensland’s STARH program—Supporting Those At Risk of Homelessness.
The program, funded by the Department of Communities, Housing and Digital Economy, helped Saw recover financially and emotionally.
“We supported Saw to address his rent arrears with financial assistance. We cleared his arrears and put in measures for him to maintain his tenancy, liaised with his real estate agent and provided vouchers for him to access food along the way,” says Woody.
For Saw, the support enabled him to stay doing what he loves. He’s now taken on casual volunteer work helping other people in his community learn English.
“I’m a volunteer language teacher while I focus on my family and loving them,” he says.
“I was grateful for [Wesley’s] support. They gave me enough financial support and psychological help to keep going forward.”
Under the recently launched Housing and Homelessness Action Plan 2021—2025, there will be better coordination of government and non-government services across Queensland to help more people like Saw who are at risk of homelessness.
More funding will support communities, industry and the housing and homelessness sector to work together to ensure vulnerable Queenslanders can access safe and secure housing.
My name is Saw Shwe. I came to Australia since 22 years ago. I had two marriages in between (laughs), yeah, but it didn’t work, but I got three loving kids that I’m caring. When the family is broken, it’s hard to handle with the financial situation. In my case I had a trouble with the renting thing. I know how to manage myself, but when you become a mother all of a sudden, at the same time you are the father, oh it’s like very hard. I found the right people when I was in the wrong time. That’s how I experience with it. They gave me enough financial support and psychological help to keep going forward. I’m quite happy, that’s how I always tell my kids, we live in heaven (laughs).