Grassroots Charity Mobilises 12,430 Residents to Urge Government Funding for Local Homeless


March 2024. Community at 3, a dedicated community group operating in the mid-north coast of NSW, is urgently calling on the government to address the growing homelessness crisis in the region.

With the support of Leslie Williams MP, State Member for Port Macquarie, 12,430 petitions will be presented to Parliament over the coming weeks, urging for assistance in providing transitional housing solutions for the increasing number of people who are unhoused.

Community at 3, an Incorporated Association and registered charity, has been tirelessly working to support those in need within their community. They provide a range of essential services including food, clothing, rental assistance, emotional and spiritual support, and advocacy for more than 250 clients. However, the organisation is facing a critical shortage of transitional accommodation for those experiencing crisis and short-term housing issues.

According to Community at 3, the number of individuals seeking assistance with homelessness in the mid-north coast region is alarming, with an average of five new cases per week. These figures represent only a portion of the total homeless population, as many individuals may not seek help or are couch-surfing, further exacerbating the issue.

“Homelessness is a complex and urgent issue affecting individuals and families in our community,” said Theo Hazelgrove, Board Chair of Community at 3. “We are witnessing a growing number of people in crisis, and without adequate transitional housing options, we are unable to meet the demand for assistance.”

National statistics from the Productivity Commission’s Report on Government Services 2022 highlight the severity of the housing crisis, with a significant portion of low-income households experiencing rental stress. In NSW, the homeless population has seen a rapid increase, with the state now home to 32% of Australia’s homeless population.

In response to the crisis, Community at 3 has proposed the Transitional Accommodation Project (TAP), aimed at establishing a facility in the Camden Haven area to provide much-needed transitional housing. The project aims to offer various accommodation options, including motel-style units, on-site caravans, tiny homes, and nod-pods, to cater to different needs.

“We believe that providing transitional accommodation is a crucial step in addressing homelessness and supporting individuals on their journey to stability,” Mr Hazelgrove added.

Community at 3 is calling on the government to provide financial assistance to make the TAP project a reality. With government support, they aim to establish a facility that not only provides housing but also offers access to essential services such as healthcare, employment assistance, and community support programs.

Community at 3 urges all levels of government to prioritise funding for transitional housing initiatives to address the growing homelessness crisis in the Mid-North Coast and beyond.

/Public Release.