Crisis housing boost for women in Walgett

More women and children escaping domestic and family violence in Walgett will have a safe place to stay with the NSW Government unveiling plans for an upgraded women’s refuge.

Attorney General and Minister for Prevention of Domestic and Sexual Violence Mark Speakman said the $2.7 million refuge re-development will provide a safe and secure haven for up to 120 women and children each year, who’ve fled domestic abuse.

“Women and children in crisis who are fleeing violent homes, often with very little, shouldn’t have to resort to sleeping in a car or couch surfing,” Mr Speakman said.

“These new units in Walgett will not only provide safe, modern accommodation but, importantly, help connect individuals with local support services as well.”

Five units will be built on a site owned by the Department of Communities and Justice (DCJ) along with a dedicated area to strengthen living skills – like cooking, doing household chores, and budgeting/paying bills – as well as office space for partner agencies to offer services.

Parliamentary Secretary to the Deputy Premier Sam Farraway said this new project would help support vulnerable members of the community when they need it most.

“A dedicated space for case management and wraparound services will be built alongside the dwellings in Walgett so that residents can access help quickly and easily – this is crucial as they begin the difficult journey of recovery from domestic abuse,” Mr Farraway said.

DCJ has contracted majority-owned indigenous company NPM Indigenous Pty Ltd to build the project, with director of operations Tim Moggridge saying the construction would create dozens of opportunities for locals.

“We are proud to be working on this project which will create local jobs now and contribute so much to the Walgett community in the future,” Mr Moggridge said.

Mission Australia State Director Nada Nasser said the new facility would empower women and children with specialist health and legal services.

“We make the experience for women and children as homely and supportive as possible to create an opportunity for them to rebuild their lives,” Ms Nasser said.

Construction will begin this week and is expected to finish in mid-2022.

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