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A win for homeless Australians

The Salvation Army and its partners Common Ground and Wesley Country Housing has received a ‘Leading Housing Project’ award at the Australasian Housing Institute Housing Awards in Adelaide.

‘Common Ground Port Augusta’, a partnership formed three years ago, provides housing for people with complex needs. Approximately 38 tenants, including Aboriginal Australians (both single and couples) now live in 35 units spread over two sites (Boston Street and Augusta Terrace).

Common Ground provides the housing, The Salvation Army provides support such as connections to ‘life support’, employment and training, and case management of clients, and Wesley Country Housing provides tenancy management.

Housing Award Port Augusta

Left to right = Scott Cugley (Community Services and Generic Homelessness Service Manager), Rose Mill (Wesley Country housing Tenancy Manager), Kirsty Dadleh (The Salvation Army Common Ground Services Manager), Jacki Shaw (The Salvation Army Common Ground Case Manager)

Salvation Army coordination comes in part from The Salvation Army’s Port Augusta Community Centre at Carlton Parade – a new, integrated mission centre opened in April 2013 – with staff members based on site and at the centre.

‘We try to create a sense of community, safety, cultural relevance and “home”,’ said Scott Cugley, The Salvation Army’s manager of Port Augusta homelessness services and community services. ‘The model is about removing homelessness as a barrier so that they can continue to move forward in life, and we are seeing positive sign of progress in people’s lives…it’s exciting for us.’

‘A house is just the beginning,’ agreed Salvation Army social programme and policy consultant Andrew Elvin. ‘It’s about transforming a life, not just providing a home.’