New winter response to homelessness in the Adelaide CBD
Baptist Care SA's Westcare facility will be open from 5pm until 7am tonight and tomorrow night to provide food and shelter for Adelaide's homeless amid this week's poor weather conditions.
Westcare is located at 11-13 Millers Court, Adelaide. Fred's Van will be there to provide food.
The State Government committed $100,000 toward a new 'winter response' to homelessness in the CBD on Friday as part of a roundtable discussion with front line service providers.
The new winter response will see existing service providers offer accommodation and other services in cold and extreme weather conditions, linked to the existing Homelessness Gateway service.
A further meeting of homelessness agency heads will meet again today to review the response and to determine who will provide what extra services over the winter.
A new protocol will also be developed to guide homelessness services to respond to emergencies such as extreme weather.
Participants at Friday's roundtable agreed that there were more appropriate facilities than the Franklin Street bus station and they prioritised using existing services.
South Australia's Specialist Homelessness Services Sector provides an extensive range of services and supports for people experiencing or at risk of homelessness, including emergency and crisis accommodation.
The sector receives funding of more than $58 million through the National Affordable Housing Agreement and the National Partnership Agreement on Homelessness. The sector is comprised of 40 providers who provide 75 programs across the State, including three telephone gateway services.
The gateways link clients to crisis housing and supports, including in the city. These include the St Vincent de Paul Men's Homelessness Accommodation Service (with 47 beds for single adult males), Catherine House (16 beds for single adult women) and Youth 110 (30 apartments for young people between 16 and 21 years).
The roundtable was held in Adelaide on Friday. It included representatives from Hutt Street Centre, Catherine House, St Vincent de Paul, Street to Home, Uniting Communities, the South Australian Council of Social Service, Anglicare SA, Shelter SA, Baptist Care, Activate Church, St John's Youth Service, State Emergency Service and the Adelaide City Council.
Acting Minister for Social Housing Peter Malinauskas said:
The State Government's new winter response will extend existing homelessness services in the city, making them more available when they are needed most.
Following implementation of the winter response in the CBD, we will then consider how it can be applied more broadly across the state.
This new approach will give even more support to people in the city who are homeless or at risk.
The Homelessness Gateway service will continue to operate 24 hours per day, seven days per week.
Anyone who is homeless or at risk of homelessness is encouraged to call the Homelessness Gateway on 1800 003 308.