Rough sleeping support

Towards Home

Victorian Government initiatives to assist the rising numbers of people sleeping rough in Melbourne's inner city.

The $9.8 million Towards Home package was announced in January 2017 in response to the rise in the number of people sleeping rough in inner city Melbourne.

Since its launch, significant progress has been made against all of Towards Home’s key objectives, including the introduction of portable homes at five sites across inner Melbourne.

Work has been completed at the Preston site and residents have already taken up accommodation. The remaining sites are on track for completion and tenancy by February 2018.

Work on the remaining key objectives is progressing well and further announcements will be made shortly.

Homelessness and Rough Sleeping Action Plan

In January 2017, Mr Tony Nicholson, the Executive Director of the Brotherhood of St Laurence  was appointed to oversee the delivery of the Towards Home housing and support response and to develop recommendations for a long-term strategy to reduce rough sleeping in Victoria.

In October 2017, Mr Nicholson presented his advice to the Minister for Housing, together with a detailed situation appraisal setting out the evidence base for his recommendations.

In response, the Victorian Government has developed a Homelessness and Rough Sleeping Action Plan which is the first phase in the development of a long-term homelessness strategy for Victoria.

The action plan provides a framework for reducing the incidence and impacts of rough sleeping in Victoria within the context of four key themes:

  • intervening early to prevent homelessness
  • providing stable accommodation as quickly as possible
  • support to maintain stable accommodation
  • an effective and responsive homelessness service system

As part of the action plan, the government will announce $10 million in funding to expand assertive outreach and flexible support in the CBD and beyond to City of Yarra and Port Phillip with another $9 million for assertive outreach and flexible support in outer metro, regional and rural Victoria.

There will also be $4.5 million of funding dedicated to the reform of crisis support accommodation.

In addition to this, a further $22 million of initiatives have been announced, comprising: 

  • $4.8 million for 20 additional modulars
  • $9 million for six supportive housing teams
  • $8.2 million for three additional Accom for Homeless phase 2 projects

Download the Homelessness and Rough Sleeping Action Plan.

Victoria's Homelessness and Rough Sleeping Action Plan - January 2018 Victoria's Homelessness and Rough Sleeping Action Plan - January 2018PDF (2.37 MB)

Download ‘A proposed strategy to reduce rough sleeping in Victoria’.

A proposed strategy to reduce rough sleeping in Victoria A proposed strategy to reduce rough sleeping in VictoriaDOC (710.62 KB)

Download ‘Rough sleeping in Victoria – situation appraisal’.

Rough sleeping in Victoria – situation appraisal Rough sleeping in Victoria – situation appraisalDOC (1.09 MB)

Towards Home

Towards Home is an investment of $9.8 million to house vulnerable people who are sleeping rough in inner Melbourne and provide them with targeted support to maintain their housing.

It builds on:

  • $750,000 to extend the Rough Sleepers Initiative
  • an additional $850,000, to assist rough sleepers state-wide during winter
  • $109 million homelessness package

The Towards Home package will deliver the following over two years:

  • immediate, dedicated access to 40 transitional housing units across Melbourne until new additional permanent housing is in place
  • 30 new modular and relocatable homes on public land
  • a guaranteed pathway to permanent supportive housing so that rough sleepers gain stable housing as quickly as possible
  • case management and targeted supports for an immediate 40 vulnerable rough sleepers for up to two years to help them maintain their housing