13 July 2022

More than 3,500 people in regional and rural NSW will have greater access to housing supports and services following the launch of a new mobile outreach program to assist people sleeping rough.

Minister for Families and Communities and Minister for Disability Services Natasha Maclaren-Jones said the program would ensure regional communities, from Broken Hill to Leeton, are supported into stable accommodation.

“This funding will ensure there are dedicated staff on the ground ready to help people living in regional communities to apply for housing,” Mrs Maclaren-Jones said.

“Housing stability plays a significant role in keeping families together and these regional outreach teams will provide people with the tools to make decisions for a chance at a better future.

“By intervening early and providing people with the support they need, we can engage them with the right services to significantly reduce their risk of homelessness.”

The outreach program will be launched in the Murrumbidgee, Far West and Western NSW regions and is expected to reach 35-50 people in each town.

It will serve as a mobile office travelling through regional areas and bringing with it information on services such as Rent Choice and Bond Loans, as well as access to housing supports.

The mobile outreach will also connect with existing service providers in those areas, such as specialist homelessness services, to build stronger relationships. 

Member for Albury Justin Clancy welcomed the commitment to reducing housing waitlists and overcrowding.

“As Deputy Chair of the Legislative Assembly Committee on Community Services I have seen first-hand the positive impact of outreach services in a metropolitan setting,” Mr Clancy said.

“There is a demonstrated benefit in metro areas and this announcement is a signal the NSW Government is working to ensure the same level of services is also provided to regional communities.”