Andrews Government gives $4 million for Pickett St

Victoria’s Minister for Housing, Disability and Ageing, Martin Foley, formally announced $4 million for McAuley Community Service for Women’s Pickett St building to mark the start of Homeless Persons’ Week (August 1-7 2016).

Construction of Victoria’s first purpose built accommodation and support hub for women at 1-3 Pickett St, Footscray, is well underway. The new building, which will provide safe and secure medium term housing for women, is expected to open in November this year. Minister Foley toured the building along with members of the McAuley Community Services for Women board; Staff and Sisters of Mercy.

At the new building McAuley Community Services for Women will pioneer programs sensitive to women’s specific needs. These will include education and employment, health, social and recreation programs. The facility will be staffed on a 24-hour basis, allowing for after hours and weekend community contact and support.

The $11 million building has been largely funded through the generous support of the Institute of Sisters of Mercy of Australia and Papua New Guinea with $4 million from the Victorian Government.

The new facility is for women who have experienced homelessness, with a specialist focus on those who have experienced or are experiencing family violence and/or mental illness; the building will also be the hub for community services that will reach over 100 women each year.

The 25 rooms with ensuites and balconies will provide safe medium-term housing and support for women to recover from the impact of family violence and homelessness; poor health (physical and mental); extreme social isolation; poverty and unemployment.

Caption: Minister Foley and CEO Jocelyn Bignold cut the cake after a tour of the new Pickett St building to be opened in November.