In Townsville, 261 out of the 1215 people homeless were young people aged 12-24 (Queensland Youth Housing Coalition Inc., 2021)*. In response to this felt need, YWAM launched its transitional, shared housing in June 2021. YWAM has since then provided a safe, peaceful home for many young women, aged 17 to 25 years old, primarily from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander backgrounds, who are participating in local youth housing and reintegration support programs.
What is transitional housing?
YWAM’s transitional house provides medium-term, shared accommodation for young women who are transitioning from homelessness or at risk of homelessness to permanent accommodation.
The transitional house is operated through a unique live-learn model. A number of female volunteers reside alongside the at-risk young women, thus providing a genuine sense of home, belonging and opportunities to develop shared housing tenancy skills while building a rental history. Residents develop self-sufficiency and learn life skills that equip them for successful tenancies including communication, conflict resolution, rights and responsibilities, maintaining and cleaning a property, finances and budgeting.
Who can access this program?
Life was very hectic and I was struggling with a lot of things such as addiction and mental health. I didn’t have a safe place to live. I heard about YWAM through QYS and felt very nervous prior to moving in but took the chance because it was better than being homeless. Everyone [at the House] is very respectful and kind and we have freedom to do certain things like go out and be ourselves.
I was staying at my Auntie’s house but because there was no room, I moved myself to a homeless shelter for two months, and then they got me into Queensland Youth Services and they put me into YWAM. YWAM House has made me feel at home and it’s made me become very independent. I want to work on being more socialized with people. Yeah, they make me happy because I’ll sometimes be in my dark place and I’ll just go hang out with them…like knowing that I’ve got somewhere to go that actually makes me feel like I’m home
*YOUNG PEOPLE EXPERIENCING HOMELESSNESS FACTS & FIGURES Young people in Townsville Region. (n.d.). Retrieved September 11, 2023, from https://www.qyhc.org.au/wp-content/uploads/2023/06/QYHC_Fact-Sheet-2021_Townsville.pdf