Sacred Heart Mission’s Journey to Social Inclusion (J2SI) program works with people who have experienced long-term homelessness, providing intensive engagement alongside housing to help people exit homelessness for good. Jason* and Tim* are long-term J2SI participants, who have had significant success with the program. Here are their stories:
Jason is in his early 40s and has been in the J2SI program for two years. Jason has a longstanding history of homelessness, stemming from his experiences in out of home care as child, and a significant history of trauma, drug and alcohol use, and he experiences chronic physical pain.
Jason was allocated transitional housing in late 2019, and with support from his J2SI Intensive Case Managers (ICM) has maintained his tenancy independently. Jason has had some ‘ups and downs’ over the two years of support, but he has formed relationships with his J2SI ICM who has assisted him to actively work towards and achieve his goals.
Jason engaged with J2SI’s specialised Workforce Participation Worker, who provided supported and tailored exploration around employment pathways, supporting him to find a role in a vehicle panel repair business. Jason’s goals include regular engagement with alcohol and drug counselling, detoxification and rehabilitation services, maintaining his employment and being able to care for his son, who has additional needs.
J2SI support has assisted Jason to enhance his mental health, and to minimise his use of alcohol and drugs – and importantly, to maintain this. He enjoys his job, painting and detailing vehicles. Jason now has increased capacity to care for his son and continue to share care positively with his ex-partner.
With the support of J2SI, Jason has achieved significant long-term health, economic, social and familial milestones and continues to achieve goals on his own.
Tim was experiencing homelessness and was referred to J2SI in 2018. At that time, he was living in crisis accommodation with the Salvation Army and had been bouncing between sleeping rough and crisis accommodation for approximately 10 years.
Tim was historically very transient regarding housing, and reluctant to pay rent, moving from couch surfing to rough sleeping to crisis accommodation. This led to debt with the Department of Families, Fairness and Housing (DFFH), but he was willing to pay this off, making a significant positive change.
Tim was reluctant to engage with workers before participating in J2SI – he struggled to build rapport and trust others due to previous relationships. Now, with the positive engagement and encouragement from J2SI staff he has turned this corner. Tim has a great sense of humour, which has never failed to put a smile on his case manager’s face.
He moved out of crisis accommodation into public housing, where he has sustained the tenancy for two years and built positive relationships with his neighbours.
Tim is grateful for J2SI, and he says:
“I would like to say thank you for your help over the last few months, it has been good working with you. I am shocked that I actually completed the program. ”
“The best thing is that I have housing now and without the program, I would probably still be homeless. So for me it has been a success. Thank you to everyone.”
Our new cohort of J2SI participants (Phase 3.4) commenced the program in October 2021. With the support of Housing Choices Australia and Unison Housing, we have already moved 20 participants, of 30 so far, into housing!
J2SI is funded using a Social Impact Investment (SII) approach, which means payments are made when J2SI meets its targets. In 2020 and 2021, J2SI exceeded its targets, and J2SI received six ‘outperform’ outcome payments.
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