Veterans' Homelessness Toolkit
The Assistant Minister for Veterans’ Affairs Matt Thistlethwaite joined representatives of the community housing industry sector, government and the veteran community on 13 February to launch a range of veteran-specific community housing resources for providers.
DVA partnered with the Community Housing Industry Association (CHIA) to develop the resources, which provide an overview of veterans' experience of homelessness, including risk and protective factors for homelessness, service needs and available referral pathways, and how to tailor support for veterans and families.
A key component of the resources is a toolkit containing factsheets and training materials to better equip community housing providers to take into consideration the unique life experience and challenges that veterans face. The toolkit is called Working with Veterans: A toolkit for Community Housing Organisations.
‘We are working hard to address the issue of homelessness – we need to ensure that there are stronger linkages between providers, services and veterans,’ Minister Thistlethwaite said.
‘There are many factors that can contribute to homelessness, such as relationship breakdown, unemployment, and experiences of mental ill-health. We are focused on developing the best practical ways to address these factors before veterans and families find themselves at risk.’
An industry standard of providing housing services to veterans has also been introduced to the sector as part of the launch.
As the peak industry body representing 170 not-for-profit community housing providers in Australia, CHIA’s knowledge and connection to providers across Australia will ensure that these resources are up to date, relevant and linked with the industry.
The veterans' homelessness toolkit further progresses the Australian Government’s commitment to address veteran homelessness. The Government is establishing the $10.0 billion Housing Australia Future Fund, which will provide a sustainable funding source to increase housing supply and improve service delivery. The Housing Australia Future Fund includes $30.0 million to build housing and fund specialist services for veterans who are experiencing homelessness, or are at risk of homelessness.
Veterans who are struggling with their living situation or are at risk of homelessness are encouraged to contact DVA on 1800 VETERAN (1800 838 372) or Open Arms – Veterans & Families Counselling on 1800 011 046 who will work with them to access the most appropriate care.
To download a copy of the toolkit, visit the CHIA website.
For more information, visit the homelessness support webpage on the DVA website.