They say that good things come to those who wait. For HART4000 participant Shona, being handed the keys to her beautiful new Clayfield housing complex unit after enduring months of homelessness and life-threatening health conditions was well worth the wait.
Shona is among an alarmingly growing demographic now facing homelessness who have never experienced it before this recent housing crisis. A retired nurse and mother at 67 years of age, Shona had spent her life caring for others and never reaching out for help in return. In February 2023, she was living alone, privately renting an apartment in Kangaroo Point, when her landlord decided to sell the unit and allowed Shona only four weeks to vacate the property.
Shona was already facing the financial and personal burden of medical expenses related to her critical health issues. She suffers from fibromuscular dysplasia and heart failure and has already undergone two open heart surgical procedures. Shona has been advised that she is at significantly increased risk of death from her medical conditions and will soon require a third open heart surgical procedure.
When Shona first sought assistance from HART4000, the team quickly determined her to be a high-risk participant and escalated her case for urgent processing. After Shona’s community housing application was speedily processed by the Department of Housing, BRIC Housing presented her with two property options, but neither were deemed suitable for her health and wellbeing needs. During this process, Shona was forced to couch surf and rely on the generosity of friends, and compounded with her medical problems, the search to find the right home for Shona was taking a toll on her mental health.
However, hope was on the horizon, in the form of a new social housing complex for seniors in Clayfield funded by the Department of Housing. The complex was formally opened in July 2023 as a joint venture of BRIC Housing and Communify, who are working in partnership to cultivate a thriving community for senior residents of the 37 retirement housing units. And it is in this vibrant, heritage-listed complex that Shona has now found her new home as one of the first tenants to secure a unit there.
Shona and her family are thrilled in the knowledge that she now has her own warm and cosy home where she can recover from future surgery in the company of her companion cat, safe in her friendly new neighbourhood. Due to her remarkable resilience, combined with the ongoing support and perseverance of the HART4000 team, Shona has been able to move from crisis into comfort, and homelessness into hope, in just a matter of months.
If you’re experiencing instability and insecurity in your housing situation due to the current housing crisis, you’re not alone. At HART4000, we believe that housing is a basic human right for everyone. Call us on (07) 3004 0100 to speak to our team about your needs.