Extra housing for family violence victims 

Haven; Home Safe (HHS) has received funding from the Department of Health and Human Services to secure an additional 50 head-leased properties for women and children escaping family violence.

This is the fourth consecutive year the agency has received funding for its award-winning Moving On program, which operates across the North Region of the state, providing rent subsidy and wrap-around support services for households who have experienced family violence.

HHS Chief Operations Officer Trudi Ray said the aim of Moving On was to increase the supply of medium to long-term affordable rental housing.

‘The program means women and their families can access the support they need to stay safe and get back on their feet,’ Ms Ray said.  

HHS sub-lets properties to approved applicants for a period of up to 12 months, while locally based family violence services provide the wrap-around supports.

‘We use a rent step-up model which helps our clients slowly transition towards paying full market rent by the end of the 12 months,’ Ms Ray said 

Of the previous allocations, HHS obtained under the plan, 92 per cent of victim-survivors transitioned to a private rental lease of their chosen property at the end of the 12-month head-lease period.

The organisation will be sending out the call to specialised family violence agencies for referrals to the program in the Melbourne area from Monday, February 3.

‘Once Metro clients have been sourced, we will be accepting referrals from local specialised family violence agencies in Bendigo and other regions in Victoria,’ Ms Ray said.

‘We are pleased to be able to continue the important work we have started with Moving On.’

The regional sites include Geelong, Ballarat, Warrnambool, Bendigo and Mildura/Swan Hill.