Cross-Sector Coordination to Tackle Homelessness
Wednesday, 24th October 2018 at 5:50 pm
An ambitious partnership between academics, the corporate sector and not-for-profit groups aims to end homelessness within a generation by tapping into new sources of capital.
Australian Red Cross, the Centre for Social Impact (CSI), Mission Australia, and PwC Australia announced on Wednesday they had joined forces as a collective called the Constellation Project.
CSI CEO, Kristy Muir, said that by engaging property developers and financiers, as well as community housing groups, new sources of capital could be tapped to address housing affordability in a way that hadn’t happened previously.
She acknowledged there were many existing partnerships and coalitions already fighting homelessness, but bringing together not for profits, academics and the corporate sector was what set this approach apart.
“Homelessness can be addressed if we look at the key levers, and we draw on not just government and the NFP sector, but also the corporate sector in how we’re going to tackle this issue going forward,” Muir told Pro Bono News.
The collective also released a report that delves into the key drivers of homelessness, such as domestic violence, and the critical need for more affordable housing in Australia.
Phil White, CEO of QBE Lenders’ Mortgage Insurance, said the report demonstrated the issue wasn’t a housing supply crisis, but an affordable housing supply crisis, with almost 80 per cent of new housing stock priced at the upper end of the housing market.
“As an active participant in the Australian housing market, I’m really proud QBE has and will continue to support this work along with other corporates, non-profits and government departments,” White said.
Rosalie Wilkie, social impact lead at PwC Australia, said that by harnessing the collective intelligence between sectors and activating their networks, the groups could turn information into action.
Muir said their first goal was to convince the federal government to develop and implement a national homelessness strategy.
“Homelessness doesn’t have geographic or state boundaries, so we really need a national housing vision and strategy that has a cross-sectional commitment with a shared purpose to create change,” she said.
The collective will run a series of “systems change events” over the coming months, bringing together groups who will work towards addressing key areas of homelessness that need to be fixed.