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Six rooms that will change lives: new home for young people leaving foster care

Six rooms that will change lives: new home for young people leaving foster care

NSW

This week, the first sod was turned for the 6-bedroom home that will be built to house five young people leaving foster care at a time and a live-in carer. PIF House Parkview KARI built by Rawson Homes was initiated and is being coordinated by the Property Industry Foundation and fully funded by Parkview Group for Aboriginal charity KARI.  The project is valued at approximately $400,000.

Young people living in the house will be provided support and mentoring to build independent living skills, find employment and transition back into the community. The live-in carer will support them with various issues relating to mental health, behavioural issues, trauma, violence and various disabilities.

Parkview Group Executive Chairman Tony Touma, said the company was proud to be funding the house which will be a transformational place for young people to build independent lives.

“When the opportunity to fund the development of the house arose, we were excited about giving back in a tangible way,” he said. “We have been overwhelmed by the support of our suppliers, sub-contractors and partners in assisting with our cause.”

Property Industry Foundation Chief Executive Officer, Kate Mills, said the home was a crucial resource for young people leaving foster care as government support for such young people and their foster families in NSW ends when they turn 18.

“We know that young people often leave foster care without good housing options and the Property Industry Foundation is increasing that housing stock across three states including NSW,” she said.  “Our goal is to build 125 bedrooms by 2021 and PIF House Parkview KARI built by Rawson Homes will add to that total.”

Matthew Ramaley, Chief Executive Officer, Rawson Homes, said when he pitched the project to Rawson staff the response was enthusiastic.

"This project will create dreams and build hearts for years to come," he said.

KARI Chief Executive Officer Casey Ralph said this was a life-changing moment both for KARI and for the young people in the organisation's care.

"The house represents an aspirational future for our young people," she said.

Within the first year of leaving foster care, 35 per cent of young people are homeless, 29 per cent are unemployed and 46 per cent of males are involved in the juvenile justice system.*

In the house, support staff will liaise with potential employers, landlords, community organizations and support services in order to build a strong network around the residents and fully prepare them for the transition into a successful adulthood, which will include independent living for some and supportive accommodation for others.

*CREATE Foundation.

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