A Woman’s Strength Through BaptistCare HopeStreet Women’s Services, hundreds of women in some of our most vulnerable communities have found hope amidst their disadvantage and distress. Every woman who accesses HopeStreet services has her own story, her own strengths, and her own motivations to bring about change. She may be experiencing homelessness or escaping domestic violence; working in the sex industry or struggling with addiction; coping with childhood trauma or living with mental illness. Many live with a combination of all factors. HopeStreet Women’s Services provides case management and counselling, makes outreach visits and welcomes women who drop in for support in an environment that is warm, dignified and safe. hopestreet.org.au
With the consideration that each woman’s story is unique, the Women’s Services team walks alongside her to enable the transformation she seeks for herself. In doing so, women whose lives were once shaped by violence, fear and trauma can begin to find their strength and reclaim their voice. “I now feel like I’m somebody… I have a new perspective. I now have no fear. I feel important and like I have a future. I am strong, confident and happy.” Eileen* “I have a safe place now, this is my family. I feel like it’s my second home.” Trudy* “They support me. I feel like I have power to start my new life. I am much more confident and I hope I can also help people one day.” Kay*
“Sometimes I feel so alone. But you guys are my family… One day a lot of stuff had happened and I was in a panic. The only number I remembered was the HopeStreet number so I could call and get support”. Kiki* *Names changed for confidentiality.
SEX INDUSTRY WE NEED YOUR SUPPORT Of the women accessing HopeStreet Women’s Services: 98% have experienced at least one significant violent event. 50% have experienced violence in the last 12 months. 60% are experiencing homelessness or have experienced homelessness in the last 12 months. You can make a difference for women like Eileen, Trudy, Kay and Kiki. Summer 2018
‘For unto us a} child is born’ Isaiah 9:6
Christmas Greetings mercy and kindness of others.
This year we learned that over 115,000 Australians were homeless on the last Census night in 2016. Of these 8,200 were sleeping rough, with no secure shelter and 51,000 were living in severely overcrowded housing. Others may not be so visible. They are the hidden homeless, couch surfing and nomadic with no place to call their own. At Christmas time, when I think about our Lord Jesus on the night of His miracle birth, I see His earthly parents turned away from shelter and without a place to rest and safely deliver their child. They too were in urgent need of shelter, dependent on the
A long way from home, how thankful Mary and Joseph would have been for the provision of a roof over their heads as they brought our Saviour into the world. Surrounded by the uncertainty of what lay ahead, yet reassured of God’s provision, purpose and presence in that lowly stable. I am thankful that through our HopeStreet teams, our Lord’s message of hope and love continues to resonate to those who find themselves far from home, in need of shelter and food, searching for security, or seeking safety for themselves and their families. I am hopeful that their lives can be transformed through the expression of Christ’s love for them in the work we do. On behalf of our HopeStreet team, may I express my sincerest best wishes for a
blessed Christmas and a hope filled future to you and your loved ones.
Ross Low CEO BaptistCare NSW & ACT
Of the 115,000 people estimated to be homeless in Australia on Census night 2016: 42% were Female = 49,000 58% were Male = 66,000
Your donation to BaptistCare HopeStreet this Christmas will help to provide hope to individuals who are experiencing homelessness. hopestreet.org.au/donate
HopeStreet Champions Alma and Barry O’Rourke are HopeStreet Champions. A powerhouse pair, each year they organise three collections for HopeStreet Inner City through Carlingford Baptist Church. In true partnership with HopeStreet, Alma seeks to understand the community needs for each collection and ensures the church contributions meet these needs, both on time and in abundance.
“Alma is tireless, she promotes the appeals across all services at her church and arranges for a HopeStreet representative to visit at least once a year,” said Grace Franklin, former Partnerships & Fundraising Specialist at BaptistCare HopeStreet Inner City.
labelled for delivery to HopeStreet Inner City. “Alma’s servant heart and dedication bring people together with purpose… she makes a real difference,” Grace said.
Three times a year, Alma and Barry open up their home to the collections. Masters of quality control and champions of precision packing, the donations are packed, and
Through the valued partnerships with individuals like Alma and Barry as well as those in their church groups, this Christmas will be a little brighter for those they serve.
Seeing and responding to need is central to the work of BaptistCare HopeStreet.
Thanks to the careful coordination of HopeStreet Champions like Alma and Barry O’Rourke and the generosity of their church community, the HopeStreet Inner City cupboards are restocked and ready to serve. Here are some of the groceries items which are now making their way to individuals experiencing homelessness:
Long-life Milk Cartons
Boxes of Cereal
Bags of Rice
Bags of Pasta
Up & Go
(or similar ‘liquid breakfast’ drinks, e.g. Sustagen)
(e.g. muesli bars, crackers & dip, mini chip packets, mini shapes. Great for school lunch boxes!)
Domestic Violence is More Than Skin Deep Domestic Violence is a pattern of abusive behaviour through which a person acts to harm, control and intimidate another person in a domestic setting.* Everyday Australians need to be better educated about the various types of domestic violence and to recognise the signs if a woman is being abused. Bruises and black eyes may well be a tell-tale sign of domestic violence. But what if every Australian could see the various signs of abuse that run much deeper than physical violence? Research undertaken by BaptistCare HopeStreet, has measured the Australian public’s awareness of the seven types of domestic
abuse – economic, sexual, spiritual, verbal, emotional, physical and social. It found that older Australians are much more likely to recognise all forms of domestic violence than younger generations, indicating a concerning lack of awareness of the many signs of domestic abuse among young people. This generational divide highlights an urgent need to educate young Australians about healthy relationships and how to respond in situations where abuse of any kind
(not just the most common or visible) is evident. BaptistCare HopeStreet has launched its More Than Skin Deep campaign which shares insights from the research and provides resources to help Australians to recognise, respond to and refer cases of domestic violence. Their aim is to embolden and equip people with the right information to step forward and offer support in a respectful way.
morethanskindeep.org.au *‘Domestic Violence More Than Skin Deep: Knowing the signs and how to respond can save lives’ a BaptistCare HopeStreet White Paper, October 2018.
The generational gap in recognising abuse* Recognising social abuse
Recognising verbal abuse
Recognising financial abuse
Recognising spiritual abuse
Recognising physical abuse
Recognising emotional abuse
Recognising sexual abuse
The Joy Of Owning A Refrigerator Eleven months ago, the only things Lee owned were the clothes on her back and the few personal items tucked away in a suitcase she carried. She arrived in a town she knew nothing about; without work, living with depression and traumatised by violence.
The fridge furnishes Lee’s one bedroom social housing apartment. “Sometimes I have to pinch myself. I have come so far in such a short time. I don’t know what I would have done without the NILS loan. You need a fridge; you can’t survive without a fridge,” said Lee.
Now, thanks to BaptistCare’s No Interest Loan Scheme (NILS), Lee is the proud owner of a new, reliable Westinghouse fridge.
“Just knowing that this resource is there changes everything. I paid back $10 a week. I’m going to get a laptop now to help with my study.”
“I’m like, my gosh, I own things! I mean, I did own stuff but I lost them. Now this is mine, no one can take it away. It’s such a good feeling,” says Lee.
Lee began a course in the aged and disability care sector, but a work injury during training saw her in hospital and unable to continue.
Well educated and from a stable and loving family, Lee’s ‘former life’ saw her married with children and living in a Melbourne suburb. After her divorce, Lee moved state to be closer to her elderly father. In a new relationship, she found herself a victim of domestic violence. But that was then, and this is now.
“Some days are hard with both depression and the injury, but what’s important to me is having a roof over my head. I have my own place. It feels like home. I have a fridge. I’m getting there.”
“I’m staying clear of relationships at the moment. That’s empowering too! To make my own decisions, by
myself, with no one to tell me what to do or how to do it,” said Lee. “It’s been the help from everyone at BaptistCare HopeStreet that has made this change possible. Everybody has done whatever they can to help me. It’s just wonderful.” Your donation to HopeStreet keeps our doors open and ready to help all our Fair Finance customers, whoever they are: 65% Female 35% Male 1 in 10 Couples with children 4 in 10 Single parents 5 in 10 Individuals
Drought Doesn’t Discriminate
We know that the drought doesn’t discriminate. It continues to decimate livestock, destroy livelihoods, upheave childhoods, bring families to breaking point, and cause the most vulnerable in our rural communities to struggle for survival. Vulnerable people like seventy year old Gerald*, working hard as a drover and sheep shearer until his health gave out. He knows the impact of drought all too well. “I’ve lived this before. Twenty years ago, a lot of my friends went to the wall because of the drought. Now more people are talking about it, it’s so widespread. Everyone on the
land needs help – there’s no income here and won’t be for a very long time,” he said.
local stores, utility payments, rent assistance, no interest loans, and counselling.
“What really gets you down is the fact the drought is lumped on top of all of life’s other problems. I see many people who wouldn’t survive without HopeStreet services.” said Gerald.
Your generosity will help us continue to provide food relief and vital services to our farmers and rural communities this Christmas.
As one of the only services providing people with food relief in Dubbo, BaptistCare HopeStreet’s Manager Karen Windley says food support meets the immediate needs of the drought-affected community. “We are experiencing high demand due to the drought. While immediate in nature, food support often is just the first step in understanding one’s needs,” said Karen. Beyond daily breakfasts and food parcels, HopeStreet is also providing relief through food and fuel vouchers that support
HopeStreet creates a strong and caring community where people can connect, share experiences and find support. This is the case for Gerald who visits every day. “I come to HopeStreet, and Tom’s sitting next to me. He’s an ex-farmer from out of town. He’s just lost his wife, his farm. He’s got nothing,” said Gerald. “We talk about the old days…It keeps us alive. I look forward to coming to HopeStreet. It feels like home.” Your support means BaptistCare HopeStreet’s doors will remain open in Gerald’s time of need. *Name changed for confidentiality.
“What really gets you down is the fact the drought is lumped on top of all of life’s other problems.” Give hope this Christmas
$30 will provide a sit down Christmas meal $50 will provide a Christmas hamper $100 will provide one week of emergency food relief for a family of four $250 will provide emergency vouchers for families affected by the drought