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Youth homelessness matters day

Today is Youth Homelessness Matters Day. At Vinnies WA, it’s something we care deeply about.

We operate two Passages Youth Engagement Hubs – one in Perth, the other in Mandurah – which provide services to young people. Those are run as a joint venture with the Rotary Club of Perth and Mandurah. While our Passages Hubs play a really important role in tackling youth homelessness, the community – and Government in particular – need to do so much more.

The biggest barrier is that there simply aren’t enough accommodation options for young people, particularly those with complex needs. There has been some notable progress for adult rough sleepers in recent times, but young people continue to go unnoticed. It means that often the only options for young people is to be referred to adult accommodation, which is not always suitable.

We are calling on the Commonwealth Government to develop a standalone National Child and Youth Homelessness and Housing Strategy. The State Government needs to increase investment into approaches, services and accommodation options that are designed specifically for young people, because you cannot end homelessness if you don’t end youth homelessness.

It matters.