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Imagine facing each night without a safe place to sleep, surrounded by uncertainty. This harsh reality was all too familiar for four adults and two young boys living in the Northern Rivers region of New South Wales. Hope appeared when Alan, Momentum Collective’s Case Manager, entered their lives.

“Finding a permanent home may seem like an impossible thought to some, especially in today’s housing climate,” reflects Alan. “In just one week, we accomplished something extraordinary – we housed four individuals long-term in Grafton”, celebrates Alan.

Every success story faces challenges. John*, 35, has been homeless since he was 15 and suffering with mobility issues after experiencing a motorcyclist accident at 19. One afternoon last year in 2023, during one of our Assertive Outreach team’s routine patrols, Alan found John sleeping on a damp, mouldy mattress in a park in Murwillumbah.

Fast-forward to now, John’s* life has taken an upward turn. With a caring approach, Alan extended support and set up meetings to assist John in finding a long-term residence in Grafton. He now awaits approval from the National Disability Insurance Scheme for his plan to support his mobility needs.

“This is the first time I’ve been able to shut the door and feel safe. Alan was an angel who arrived from heaven,” John recalls when Alan shared the news of his permanent home.

At the beginning of 2023, Alan came across a single father, Jack* and his two young boys living in a tiny caravan by the river in Tweed Heads. After connecting with Alan, the family moved into a temporary motel where they felt safe. Sharing a small hotel room presented challenges for Jack and his thirteen-year-old son, who needed his space just like any teenage boy.

When Alan shared the life-changing news with the family late last year that they had been approved for a three-bedroom house in Grafton, the family couldn’t believe it.

The family patiently waited seven months to move into their home, and as of March this year, they had officially moved in. The young boys were excited to have their own room for the first time.

“The boys have faced challenges without having their own space, so this new chapter is significant for us. We’re even thinking about expanding our family with a furry addition,” says Jack.

Everybody deserves the right to close their doors at night and feel safe like Thomas and his sons. For Jane*, fear was an unwelcome companion in her daily life. She slept in a park in Tweed Heads for 5 years cut off from communication with her now 20-year-old daughter and 80-year-old mother.

Jane’s psychosocial disability and persistent drug-induced psychosis left her confused, making it difficult to maintain relationships. When Alan encountered Jane in the park earlier this year, he directed her to a nearby safe shelter.

“The first step was to build rapport with Jane and let her know there was a safe for her to come to,” says Alan.

“Within a month after first contact, Jane walked to our Momentum head office and I set up a case meeting with her. I immediately got her into temporary accommodation in collaboration with the dedicated representatives from the Departments of Communities and Justice Link2home Homelessness service.”

the lady with the 80 yo mother slept in the park for 5 years and she is now in Lismore with a full NDIS package and lots of support because of that.

Today, Jane has comfortably settled into her unit in Lismore, benefiting from a comprehensive NDIS package that offers support workers to assist with her daily needs and overall wellbeing. She eagerly awaits the visit from her mother and daughter.

Our clients’ success stories demonstrate remarkable resilience and determination in overcoming adversity. Alan’s hard work has been vital in helping them improve their lives. Their stories prove that with personalised assistance, people can rebuild their lives and find hope even when things seem impossible.

Please note all names have been changed to protect our clients’ identities.

If your tenancy is at risk, or you are currently sleeping rough, visit our Specialist Homelessness Services for more information.