Neami’s Street to Home service in Adelaide to close

03 May 2021
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Neami National’s homelessness service, Street to Home, will shut at the end of next month following recently announced homelessness sector reforms in South Australia.

Since 2017, Neami National’s highly skilled and dedicated Street to Home team have supported some of the state’s most vulnerable people into housing. Using a housing-first approach and world leading practice, the Street to Home outreach, in-home and Adelaide CBD hub teams have supported people to find sustainable housing, and assisted them to connect with wrap-around supports that enable people to improve their wellbeing and maintain housing.

Over the past four years, the Street to Home team have built strong relationships with rough sleepers and the broader sector in Adelaide. While there’s disappointment that the Street to Home team won’t have the opportunity to continue to build on the positive relationships and outcomes delivered so far, we’re also incredibly proud of what has been achieved.

Neami South Australia State Manager, Kim Holmes said, “Enabling positive outcomes for people with highly complex needs requires the delicate balance of authenticity, care and practical navigation of a complex web of systems and services well beyond the homelessness sector. We’re privileged to have employed thirty-six highly skilled and dedicated staff at Street to Home who have supported really positive outcomes for people experiencing homelessness.”

Street to Home is a nation leading service that supports 10 people per week on average into housing or accommodation. During the COVID-19 pandemic, the Street to Home team led the collective charge to ensure people sleeping rough had somewhere safe to practice hygiene and social distancing. The team worked above and beyond to match people with hotels, but most importantly capitalise on this opportunity to find a permanent solution.

“During the pandemic, in a mammoth effort we linked 500 people with emergency accommodation hotels and then intensively supported them while they were there. While other South Australian’s were safely in lock-down in their homes, our team worked relentlessly which led to 260 people being moved into homes in a matter of months, our states largest call to action for housing and support for rough sleepers in history,” reflected Kim Homes.

“The thirty-six highly skilled, dedicated and specialist staff at Street to Home will unfortunately be out of jobs following the closure of Street to Home, despite delivering a trusted and high performing service,” she said.

In addition to housing outcomes, Street to Home has led innovations across the homelessness sector, including the introduction of the first Peer Support Workers to the sector in South Australia, and leading the charge via the Adelaide Zero Project to establish a common assessment tool which is now consistently used by homelessness services in inner-city Adelaide.

“The Adelaide Street to Home team have demonstrated how valuable ongoing support and building relationships with people experiencing homelessness can be. We are proud to have been involved in this work with such an excellent and committed team. Our key concern is to support the many rough sleepers, many with complex mental health issues, following the abrupt end to this specialised service. In Adelaide, Street to Home currently engage with approximately 50 new rough sleepers every month and Street to Home have 100 people currently transitioning to or settling into their homes. Supporting continuity of care for this vulnerable population will be key in the any transition the government puts in place and we urge the government to make these plans clear as soon as possible”, said Tom Dalton, Neami National CEO.