In Welfare Services

Victoria Minister for Housing Wendy Lovell

Magpie Nest Providing Homes For The Homeless

Victor P Taffa

The Salvation Army’s partnership with the Collingwood Football Club (CFC) to develop an Innovation Action Project is delivering secure and affordable accommodation for homeless people, Minister for Housing Wendy Lovell said today.

Ms. Lovell joined representatives of the Collingwood Football Club and the Salvation Army for a barbecue at a Preston home, to launch the Magpie Nest Housing Project.

The project is a new component of the Safe Exits Innovation Action Project, one of 11 Innovation Action Projects funded as part of the Victorian Coalition Government’s Victorian Homelessness Action Plan.

“I’m delighted that we are now seeing the practical outcomes of our Innovation Action Projects.” Ms. Lovell said.

“It’s also exciting to see the Collingwood Football Club getting involved and helping those most in need.”

The project provides affordable accommodation for people who are either sleeping rough or in unsafe rooming houses through the CFC Foundation. The Salvation Army provides mentoring and support services including counselling, funded through the Victorian Government’s Innovation Action Projects.

“The Victorian Government is committed to tackling homelessness, through a combination of earlier intervention and working closely with community groups and the homelessness sector.” Ms. Lovell said.

“Last year I announced the $76.7 Million Victorian Homelessness Action Plan, which aims to provide clear pathways for those experiencing homelessness, or those at risk of homelessness, into stable housing and social and economic participation.”

“An important part of the Action Plan is funding for 11 new Innovation Action Projects which are exploring new and creative ways of either tackling homeless or preventing people becoming homeless in the first instance.”

“The Magpie Nest Housing Project, as part of the Safe Exits Innovation Action Project, will make a real difference to the lives of people currently sleeping rough.” Ms. Lovell said.

The first phase of the Magpie Nest Housing Project has seen two houses in Preston made available to homeless people. Each house will accommodate no more than three tenants, who will remain in the properties for as long as they need to.

Salvation Army case workers, through the Safe Exits Innovation Action Project, will identify and mentor participants and oversee the day to day operation of the houses. All tenants will be required to complete mental and physical health checks, a tenancy agreement contract and a ‘support and accountability’ contract. In addition all tenants will be required to undertake four hours of voluntary work per week.

The initial phase of the Magpie Nest Housing Project is being operated as a pilot. If successful the CFC Foundation hopes to expand the project further, with the long-term goal of providing 50 houses around Melbourne.

The CFC Foundation was created by the Collingwood Football Club to oversee the Club’s work in the community.

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