JULY 28 2019 – The Courier-Mail Article on Sheltered by Grace
A CHARITY that provides shelter to homeless men and women in the Logan area turns away up to 25 people a day because of a lack of facilities.
Sheltered By Grace’s Jason Loakes said the organisation currently has a 12-bedroom house for the homeless at 157 Old Logan Village Rd, Waterford, and has approval for another three buildings providing 72 beds to cater for the growing crisis.
However, a lack of funding has stalled their plans to cater for more homeless men and women in the Logan area.
Mr Loakes said according to the census there are about 1000 people classed as homeless in the area and the organisation turns away “up to 25 people a day” whom they then try to help with alternative shelter.
“Homelessness is a growing problem that has been swept under the carpet,” he said.
“When people think of the homeless they think of the stereotypical person dressed in rags suffering from mental health or substance abuse problems, but the reality is we have sugar coated what it actually means to be homeless resulting in an unknown number of Australians who are homeless and don’t think they fit the definition.
“Everyone knows a friend or a relative who is couch surfing or crashing at a mates and they aren’t really considered to be homeless but in actual fact, with no fixed address, they are.”
Since late 2015, the independent charity has helped more than 400 homeless men and women over the age of 25 by providing 24-hour accommodation and also help from doctors, psychiatrists, personal trainers, nutritionists and drug and alcohol counselors.
Recently Sheltered By Grace was one of 10 recipients to receive a grant through the Gambling Community Benefit Fund which will allow for the organisation to expand its operations and help many more people who are homeless or facing the prospect of becoming homeless.
Mr Loakes said they are honoured to receive the grant but understand the reality is while this will help some of the people coming to them for support, this grant will only be able to help a handful of the thousands who are homeless,” he said.
“We are very appreciative of the support from the Queensland Government and this grant will go towards increasing our capabilities helping those affected by homelessness, but we do need the continual support of the community to help address the issue further into the future.”