Still Shaking in Christchurch
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Still Shaking in Christchurch

Still Shaking in Christchurch

As the whole country grappled with how to stand with the people of Canterbury after the quakes, VisionWest responded to those most in need:families who were homeless. After the quakes, the numbers of homeless grew from approximately 100 individuals to more than 500 individuals, families and children; single mums with two, three, four children; families of six or more living in one room, cars, caravans, and garages. Rents skyrocketed, jobs disappeared, and Landlords evicted tenants so they could move in themselves while their own home was being repaired. That’s where VisionWest’s Short Term Emergency Housing programme kicked into gear.

In partnership with the Ministry of Social Development, VisionWest has leased a 20 unit motel to house families as part of an intensive 8 week programme that helps homeless families move from homelessness to sustained tenancy. Now, more than 50 people have been through the programme. Dave* lived in a caravan with his son. Circumstances arose that meant they had to vacate the camping ground.

Dave moved to a tent in the forest while his son stayed on a friend’s couch. All that changed with VisionWest: “[The VisionWest program] is a haven where you can put behind you where you were and, with the help and support and connection with the staff feel better and start to realise hope for a better future with your loved ones.” Dave and his son have now moved into one of the properties owned by VisionWest in Christchurch as long term tenants. Dave’s dream is to be happy and have security for himself and his loved ones. He said “Thank you for helping us in our desperate time of need and thank you for getting us started in a new place to live.”

To find out more about our Emergency Housing program and VisionWest Housing in general, click
here.

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