Journey to Social Inclusion (J2SI) is a Sacred Heart Mission initiated service model which was piloted over three years between November 2009 and October 2012.
The project, which was the first of its kind in Australia, aimed to demonstrate that with the right investment it is possible to end a person's long-term homelessness and that it makes economic sense.
J2SI draws on research as well as best practice in Australia and overseas which shows that a person can make a permanent transition out of homelessness through intensive, individually-tailored, long-term support that addresses the underlying causes of the person's homeless as well as trauma experienced whilst homeless.
The J2SI program delivered:
- intensive and individually tailored support
- rapid access to permanent housing
- therapeutic services to address the trauma - that is both a cause and a consequence of long term homelessness
- a skills building program that equips participants with life skills that assist people to reconnect with the mainstream community and build social networks outside of the homeless subculture.
The total cost of the pilot over the three years was almost $4 million - around $30,000 per supported participant per year.
To ensure evaluation of the project was robust we partnered with RMIT University to evaluate the social impact of J2SI on participants and the Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research to undertake the economic evaluation.
The latest evaluation report 'Resolving long-term homelessness' looks at J2SI after the three years of service delivery. The next report, due out in 2014, will look at how participants are faring a year after the program has come to an end.