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Vinnies COVID work receives top accolade

Vinnies Specialist Community Services and Emergency Relief and Support teams have won an award as part of the Australasian Housing Institute’s Brighter Future Awards.

The team received the top gong in the category “Response to COVID”, which recognises initiatives or projects by organisations that have led to tenants and staff to feel supported through the global pandemic, allowing them to not only survive, but to thrive.

The award was presented by Mike Rowe, the Director General of the Department of Communities.

During the initial stages of the pandemic, Vinnies rolled out a number of new contingency plans, policies and procedures for our Specialist Community Services and our Emergency Relief and Support, which maintained a trauma-informed and person-centred approach for tenants, consumers and clients.

During lockdowns this meant that the Emergency Relief team pivoted from home visitation to setting up Hubs and pick up services for food distribution.

This allowed Vinnies to reach those people who hadn’t been connected with our services. It also led to the development of a new permanent Hub model to target different demographics who require assistance in the community.

Chrissie Smith, Executive Manager of Specialist Community Services, said the award was an acknowledgement of what Vinnies is all about.

“This is a true testament to our vision of offering a ‘hand up’ to people in need in such a sensitive environment and creating hope for a brighter future,” she said.