Excellence in Ending Homelessness - Young People Nominee
Partnership - The Glue Factory Penrith (Transitional Housing Project) between Platform Youth Services and Mission Australia
Please give your reasons for nominating this partnership.
The Glue Factory Penrith (Transitional Housing Project) is a collaborative partnership between Platform Youth Service and Mission Australia providing intensive wrap around supports, case management, transitional accommodation support along with practical and responsive support through the use of brokerage, glue facilities (food packs, laundry, emergency relief) and afterhours support. The partnership
Both Platform and Mission work collaboratively through the joint intake and Transitional Allocation Meetings as part of the partnership. The meeting ensures all nominations for transitional accommodation (from both services) are discussed in detail and all avenues for wrap around support are considered and young people matched to case managers. The partnership also ensures young people are prepared appropriately for transition through internal programs (RIKI or Share it) and access to rapid rehousing where required to engage with case managers. The partnership works to give the young people accessing the program the best jump start in the independent living journey, as well as ensuring the services provided are client focused and needs based. The Glue can also offer intensive strengths based, client centred, case management and mentoring for young people as well as assisted referrals to other specialised services and advocacy on behalf of young people with larger bodies such as government departments and the legal system. This provides young people with a continuity of care and additional support separated from their housing supports.
Platform Youth Services and Mission Australia provided transitional accommodation to young people at risk of and who were experiencing homelessness in the Penrith LGA, independently prior to the Going Home Staying Home reforms. Both Services have always worked in collaboration to assist clients with a range of services and programs. Through the reform the formal partnership was developed and delivered. This has seen a significant impact within community in respect to the streamlined services, access and referral pathways for clients has been broadened as well as streamlined service provision, collaborated resource allocation and staffing and broader reach for the service across the LGA.
What outcomes were delivered as a result of this partnership?
The outcomes that have been seen within this project have been many. With the support of the workers who provide intensive case management support and mentoring, clients have been able to complete programs prior to entering the accommodation, such as Rent It Keep it and Share it, run through Platform, that assist young people in developing their skills in accessing, applying, maintaining a tenancy as well as how to live with others in share accommodation situations.
Once accepted they access subsidised accommodation for up to 12 months, which allows them to stabilise and increase their educational goals and employment positions. Clients are supported throughout the entirety of the program to ensure they exit successfully into mainstream stable accommodation which has included long term accommodation option with reduced support packages.
The project give young people the opportunity to build their self- confidence and worth, together with their support worker, which allows them to address complex issues that had previously led to their homelessness and instability therefore securing a more productive and stable future.
The Glue Factory Penrith, partnership between Platform Youth Services and Mission Australia has been in place officially since the Going Home Staying Home reform, when both services successfully tendered for Specialist Homelessness Service packages.
As part of the reform, both services put forward working in partnership to provide transitional housing to young people aged 17- 25 living in the Penrith and surrounding areas.
Platform Youth Service is the lead in the partnership, providing funding and other resources. Both services provide staffing to the partnership. Mission Australia also provides properties that can be used to house young people.
After the GHSH reform, the Managers of both services ensured that prior standing relationships and collaboration that had already been in place were strengthened. This saw monthly transitional meetings for the case managers to meet and discuss allocations, nominations, and supporting current clients. In the last 6 months, I have had the opportunity to oversee this partnership from the Platform side. Case managers provide medium to intensive support dependant to the young person’s needs to ensure they maintain their tenancy, including budgeting and living skills, that will assist them in gaining a rental reference. Both Platform and Mission ensure that all young people referring to the transitional program complete the Rent It Keep It Program, which gives them the necessary knowledge and skills required to maintain and sustain a tenancy.
A key objective of the project is to provide transitional housing, that will assist the young person to be undertake education or employment during the 12 months program, that will assist them to be able to move on successfully into independent housing at the end of their tenancy with the program. Both services reported an increase in the number of young people engaged in education and training at the end of 2017.