RURAL Housing Network and Berry Street Victoria have been charged with the duty to be co-service providers for Shepparton’s Education First Youth Foyer, which plans to be open and ready for operation later this year.
The two service providers will work in partnership with GOTAFE to deliver this new service, which will provide safe accommodation for up to 40 young people aged 16 to 24 who are attending secondary school, TAFE or university, and who are homeless or at risk of homelessness. These youths will be eligible for up to two years accommodation to assist them to maintain their studies, whilst being supported and mentored by staff and the local community.
Berry Street senior manager community partnership and support services, Greg Laidlaw said, “The important thing for people to understand is that this youth foyer is being brought about through a partnership between Rural Housing Network, Berry Street and GOTAFE.
“We’ll be providing other services to complement the ideals of the foyer including getting the youths to give back through volunteering and work experience and giving them the foundation and direction to take that next step away from their current situations.
“With high unemployment rates and youths not being engaged in education and being at risk of homelessness, this is something that Shepparton desperately needs.”
Rural Housing Network Limited CEO, Celia Adams said, “Housing is a fundamental component of making sure young people get the best possible start. It is extremely difficult to get educated, get employed, get connected to your community, get healthy and be safe, without safe, secure and affordable housing. The youth foyer provides that opportunity.”