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Homelessness Prevention Week

Step up to end homelessness

This week is Homelessness Prevention Week – and the statistics in Australia paint a bleak picture about this social problem.

On any given night, 1 in 200 Australians – more than 105,000 people – have nowhere to call home.

The campaign encourages individuals, communities and organisations to “step up to end homelessness”.

Like many community organisations the Salvos continue to experience an increase in the number of people accessing its homeless services. As the largest provider of homeless services in Australia we operate 155 services across the country.

From 2013 to 2014, these services recorded a 9% increase in the number of homeless clients assisted – and sadly a 41% increase in the number of clients unable to be assisted due to a lack of resources.

Homelessness Prevention Week aims to highlight that homelessness can be caused by a range of factors. In the last year we found the main reasons people accessed our homeless services were:

• 36% of people were in housing crisis or inadequate/inappropriate dwellings
• 18% were experiencing financial difficulty
• 12% escaping domestic and family violence

The week also aims to raise awareness that the demographic of homelessness might be different to the cliché picture of an old man sleeping on the streets. In the last year these were the characteristics of people accessing our homeless services:

• 72% were individuals with no dependent children
• 28% were couples/groups/families with dependent children
• 62% were recipients of government income support payments; and
• 20% had no source of income at all
• Almost 60% were living in private rental and at high risk of homelessness

To read some real and inspirational stories of people who have experienced homelessness visit our Facebook page this week. To find out more about Homelessness Prevention Week visit homelessnessaustralia.org.au