Pictured: Anglicare WA chairman John Barrington with Y-Shac Rockingham manager Rieki Rolle, Governor of Western Australia Kerry Sanderson and Anglicare WA chief executive Ian Carter
The new Y-Shac youth crisis accommodation facility built by Housing was officially opened by Governor Kerry Sanderson in Rockingham in May. At the launch event hosted by Anglicare WA, local elder Charlie Kickett provided a Welcome to Country and attendees heard from two young people whose lives have been turned around through their experiences with Y-shac.
The facility was built by the Housing Authority on land it purchased at a total cost of $1.73million. Ongoing funding is provided by the Department of Child Protection and Family Support, while management and support services are provided by Anglicare WA.
Director of the Authority's Housing Programs branch Simon Bell said Y-Shac provides vital crisis accommodation and support for young people aged 15-20, experiencing or at risk of homelessness and transitional housing for young people aged 16-25," he said.
"These young people may be escaping an unstable home life, family or relationship breakdown, eviction, exposure to crime, drugs and violence or dealing with complex mental health issues," Mr Bell said.
"They are greatly in need of a safe space that provides them with stability and guidance, and work in collaboration with other agencies to access a range of support services."
The new property in Rockingham replaces an older facility that has helped hundreds of young people since the 1980s. It offers six bedrooms, staff quarters and two transitional units as well as administrative offices, kitchens, bathrooms and living areas.
The facility is conveniently located in the heart of the Rockingham community, close to public transport and employment and educational opportunities.
Manager Reiki Rolle said Y-Shac was very grateful to the Housing Authority for delivering an exceptional and well-located property.
"With the facility now being located in the centre of this community, the young people have greater access to jobs and appropriate education to move forward with their lives," Ms Rolle said.
"The case coordinators work alongside each young person using a person-centred, trauma informed model to assist them to set life goals, and to support each individual to find their own positive futures."
Y-shac is the first facility of its kind in WA to offer a non-gender-specific program for young people and allow them to choose where they are housed according to where they feel more comfortable.