Homelessness is on the rise in Australia and globally. Impacted greatly by the recent pandemic and environmental disasters, more families and individuals across Australia are finding themselves in a position with nowhere to turn. As the current housing crisis yields no end in sight, the services needed to support Australians in crisis are needed more than ever.
Last year, Flourish had the opportunity to support Beddown, an innovative project that has given many an opportunity to be provided a safe, warm space to sleep and access amenities.
The aim of Beddown is to take spaces that are commonly used and busy during the day but at night are left vacant or empty. Beddown then activates and repurposes the space at night into pop-up accommodation to ensure the homeless, those who are sleeping rough are then able to come and get into a bed at night. Many of the homeless suffer from sleep deprivation due to the conditions of living on the streets, sleep deprivation can lead to many physical and mental health conditions, such as:
- Memory Loss
- It can also impair cognitive function and lead to alcohol or drug use.
- Those who sleep rough are security conscious too in fear of being attacked and goods taken
By providing a safe, secure and comfortable place to get a good night’s rest, Beddown help restore health, dignity and respect for their guests.
Flourish was proud to support the Beddown project in 2021, working alongside the volunteers and project guests to provide a safe and secure place to sleep.
Flourish provided a team of volunteers to provide hands-on work, assisting with setting up the beds and amenities, ready to receive guests. The Flourish team of professionals, social workers, counselors, and psychologists were also on hand to speak directly with guests and listen to their stories, providing them with emotional support, referral pathways, and life skills.
Often just a friendly face, a shower, and a hot meal were enough to make our guests feel safe and valued, something that we all deserve to feel.
As a part of the wider perspective of the project, Flourish was asked to deliver induction training and ongoing supervision to the team of volunteers. Preparing them for what they may see hear and feel and assisting them to develop their own emotional toolbox to draw from when things got tough. This role proved to be crucial in building resilience and understanding in the volunteers and preventing vicarious trauma, personally triggered events, and burnout.
In these sessions, Flourish was able to provide coaching to overcome hurdles, giving perspective and clarity to the stories that volunteers were facing night after night. Supporting their overall emotional wellbeing and mental health and identifying when further support may be required.
Flourish Community Solutions was honored to be part of this initiative and work alongside some amazing humans that made it possible and the incredible guests, resilient, strong individuals to which we are forever humbled.
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